三省吾身 – Chinese philosophy and culture

sānxǐng-wúshēn 三省吾身

Reflect on Oneself Several Times a Day

多次反省自身。“三省吾身”是儒家所主张的一种道德修养方法。儒家认为,德行的确立取决于自身的追求与努力。因此应时时反省自己的言行与内心,并以此作为修养道德的基本方法。曾子特别提出,每日应从尽己为人、诚信待人、温习课业等方面多次反省自身是否存在不足,有则改之,无则加勉。

Reflecting often on what one does – this is a way of self-cultivation of virtue advocated by Confucianism. This school of thought holds that as moral integrity is established with one’s efforts of self-cultivation, one needs to constantly examine his words and deeds as well as what he has in mind as a fundamental way of improving himself. Zengzi, in particular, stresses that one should everyday reflect many times on whether he has performed duties for others, treated others with good faith and whether he has reviewed what he learned to see if there is any room for improvement.

引例 Citation:

◎曾子曰:“吾日三省吾身:为人谋而不忠乎?与朋友交而不信乎?传不习乎?”(《论语·学而》)

(曾子说:“我每天多次反省自己:为他人谋划是否未尽心竭力?与朋友交往是否不守信诺?传授的学问是否没有温习?”)

Zengzi said: “Each day I reflect on myself several times: Have I tried all my best to help someone when offering advice to him? Have I kept my word to my friends? Have I reviewed what I learned?”(The Analects)

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