Lacking a Wide Veiw

Modern people lack a wide view and prefer to discuss petty details. This ill trait is extremely serious in readers… If you watch how they personally act, they embellish their outer appearance and esteem their language. They are carefully moderate in even minor things, and desire to drop the names of great men in home town. They curry favour with influential Houses, and ingratiate themselves with flattery even when they are wrong. They lack a sturdiness, fail to listen to other’s opinions, lack loyalty, lack filial piety and do not trust even their close friends. They don’t know when to feel ashamed of their actions. Such people like this don’t understand what they should be doing.
The Third Year of Ansei, The 29th of May. “Minutes of the Lecturer.”

27日今人大眼目なし
今人大眼目なし、好んで瑣事末節を論ず。此の弊読書人尤も甚し。(中略)其の自ら行ふ所を見れば、辺幅を修飾し、言語を珍重し、小廉曲謹、郷里善人の名を貪り、権勢の門に伺候し、阿諛曲従至らざる所なし。行々の色著はれず、侃々の声聞こえず、忠ならず、孝ならず、尤も朋友に信ならず、而して自ら居りて愧づることを知らず。是れを之れ務を知らずと謂ふ。
安政三年五月二十九日「講孟劄記」

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Benevolence is People.

Benevolence is people. Without people, there is no benevolence. Birds and beasts are like that… In the world, there are many people who are not benevolent. Futhermore, there are even more people who talk of benevolence while not relating it to people. The book lovers of today are all like this.
The Third Year of Ansei, The Seventh of June. “Minutes of the Head Lecturer.”

14日仁とは人なり
仁とは人なり。人に非ざれば仁なし。禽獣是れなり。(中略)世には人にして仁ならざる者多し。又人を離れて仁を語る者最も多し。今の読書人皆是れなり。
安政三年六月七日「講孟箚記」

Understand the Essential Point

We should prize the ability to understand the essential points of a book.
The Third Year of Ansei, The 22nd of March. “Minutes From the Head Lecturer.”

5日肯綮を得る
書は肯綮を得るを尊ぶ。
安政三年三月二十二日「講孟箚記」

Reading the Classics is of the Greatest Import.

It isn’t nessisary to flatter the saints and sages so, by saying reading the Classics is of the greatest import.
The Second Year of Ansei, The 13th of June. “Minutes of the Head Lecturer.”

12日経書を読むの第一義は
経書を読むの第一義は、聖賢に阿らぬこと要なり。
安政二年六月十三日「講孟箚記」

Without Reading Ten Thousand Books

Without reading ten thousand books, how can one become a person (whose name lasts) a thousand Autumns? Without treating one’s own toil lightly, how can one make peace for all persons?
The Third Year of Ansei, Autumn-Winter. “The Group of Shouka Sonnjuku.”

1日万巻の書を読むに非ざるよりは
万巻の書を読むに非ざるよりは、寧んぞ千秋の人たるを得ん。一己の労を軽んずるに非ざるよりは、寧んぞ兆民の安きを致すを得ん。
安政三年秋冬「松下村塾聯」

If Your Trust in Books Entirely

Mencius said, “If you trust in books entirely, you’ll become inferior to those without books.”
The Fourth Year of Kouka, the Last Day of September. “On the Heinai-fu.”

14日尽く書を信ぜば
孟子言へるあり、曰く、「尽く書を信ぜば則ち書なきに如かず」と。
弘化四年九月晦日「平内府論」

The Modest Expertise of Knights

Read the books of the wise and intelligent to polish your own character. There is nothing more than this. This is called the modest expertise of knights.
The Third Year of Kaei, the 20th Day of August. “The Complete Book of Teachings for Warriors: Protecting the Castle”

2日武士の嗜み
聖賢の書を読みて切磋琢磨する処、是れに出でず。是を武士の嗜みと云ふ。
嘉永三年八月二十日「武教全書 守城」

The Merit of Reading and Writing

Usually, for the merit of reading and writing, you cannot neglect it day or night. If you do not endevour to do this, regretting the smallest shadow, you will never see its merit.
The Third Year of Ansei, The 26th of May. “Minutes of the Head Lecturer.”

14日読書の功は
凡そ読書の功は昼夜を捨てず、寸陰を惜しみて是れを励むに非ざれば、其の功を見ることなし。
安政三年五月二十六日「講孟箚記」