2018 童蒙先習 01 - 04
Passage 1 : Julian Butterfield
- 童蒙先習 Tongmong sŏnsŭp 01
Between heaven and earth, amongst the multitude of ten thousand things, only human beings are the most precious. What is precious about human beings is that between them there are the Five Relationships.
- Discussion Questions
+ Does the word lun 倫 already bear the sense of ethical principle before its use in Confucian classics? (YO) I think the earliest usage of the character was associated "crowd/group" and "collection," and by extension the order within the group/collection.
Passage 2 : Nan Kathy Lin
- Tongmong sonsup #2
This is the reason Mengzi said, “Between father and son there is intimacy. Between ruler and subject there is righteousness. Between husband and wife there is separation. Between old and young there is a proper order. Between friends there is trust. If there is a person who does not know that there are five cardinal relationships, s/he is not far from the birds and the beasts."
Passage 3 : Fran
Then the father is loving and the son is filial; the ruler is righteous and the minister is loyal; the husband is harmonious and the wife is obedient; the elder is brotherly and the younger is respectful; friends assist each other in benevolence; and it is afterwards that one can call it becoming human.
- Discussion Questions:
+I wanted to bring in the sense of change in state indicated by the fang . . . yi construction by translating the end of the sentence as "becoming human."
(YO) I think it works. Or, "It is only after that when we are (finally?) human."
+I would add a note about poin referring to "曾子曰：「君子以文會友，以友輔仁。」" (Analects, 12:24.)
Passage 4 : Fran
The relationship between father and son is a natural form of intimacy. The father give life to the son and raises him, loves and teaches him. The son honors and maintains the father, practices filial piety and supports him. For this reason, the father teaches the son using proper means so that he does not enter wickedness, and the son softly remonstrates the father so that he does not cause offense in the villages and towns.
- Discussion Questions:
+ For 奉而承之, how about something like "honors and carries on him (with his will/intention)"?+ (Fran) The character 承 is hard to translate because it leaves unanswered the question of what exactly is being carried on or maintained. But perhaps what makes sense in the Confucian context is the family line and name, so perhaps "The son honors and maintains the father's legacy" is acceptable.
- The most prominent classical sources of these Five Relationships or ethical principles (五倫 wǔlún, o'lyun ) are the Zhongyong 中庸 (Ch. xx, 8) and the Mengzi 孟子 (Book III, Part 1 Ch. IV, 8).