Zhu Xi

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Zhu Xi (October 18, 1130 – April 23, 1200) was a Song Dynasty Chinese philosopher.[1]

Quotes[edit]

Zhuzi Yulei (Classified Dialogues of Master Zhu)

Translated by Patricia Ebrey, the original text is the "Zhuzi yulei (Beijing, Zhonghua shuju 1986)."

  • "A student asked, “What should I do about being confused by different theories when I read?” Zhu Xi answered, “Start with an open mind, then read one theory. Read one view before reading another. After you have read them again and again, what is right and wrong, useful and useless, will become apparent of itself. The process can be compared to trying to discover whether a person is good or bad. You observe him wherever he goes, notice what he says or does, and then know if he is good or bad.” He also said, “You simply must have an open mind,” and “Wash away your old opinions to let new ideas in.” 12:211 [2]
  • "A student asked, “How can a person develop his sincerity and reverence and get rid of his desires?” Zhu Xi responded, “These are the end-points. Sincerity requires getting rid of all sorts of falseness. Reverence requires getting rid of all sorts of laziness. Desires should be blocked.” 13:246 [3]
  • "Zhengchun said, “I’d like to survey a great many books.” “Don’t do that,” Zhu Xi said. “Read one book thoroughly, then read another one. If you confusedly try to advance on several fronts, you will end up with difficulties. It’s like archery. If you are strong enough for a five-pint bow, use a four-pint one. You will be able to draw it all the way and still have strength left over. Students today do not measure their own strength when reading books. I worry that we cannot manage what we already have set ourselves.” 20:464[4]


  1. Confucius; Slingerland, Edward (2006). The Essential Analects: Selected Passages with Traditional Commentary. Hackett Publishing. p. 148. ISBN 1-60384-346-9. 
  2. Ebrey, Patricia Buckley (1993). Chinese civilization : a sourcebook (2nd ed ed.). New York: The Free Press. pp. 172 - 8. ISBN 002908752X. OCLC 27226697. 
  3. Ebrey, Patricia Buckley (1993). Chinese civilization : a sourcebook (2nd ed ed.). New York: The Free Press. pp. 172 - 8. ISBN 002908752X. OCLC 27226697. 
  4. Ebrey, Patricia Buckley (1993). Chinese civilization : a sourcebook (2nd ed ed.). New York: The Free Press. pp. 172 - 8. ISBN 002908752X. OCLC 27226697. 

External links[edit]

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