This is the fourth chapter of Di Zi Gui (The Rules for Students). For links to previous lessons see below.
Below are the video lessons for chapter four.
Here is the text of chapter four below.
Fán chū yán, xìn wéi xiān.
Whenever one speaks, trustworthiness comes first.
Zhà yǔ wàng, xī kě yān.
Lying and absurd talk, how can one do such things?
Huà shuō duō, bù rú shǎo.
Talking a lot is not as good as talking less.
Wéi qí shì, wù nìng qiǎo.
Say only what is true, don’t be glib or tricky.
Jiān qiǎo yǔ, huì wū cí,
Cunning words, foul language,
Shì jǐng qì, qiè jiè zhī.
and philistine airs, definitely refrain from them.
Jiàn wèi zhēn, wù qīng yán.
Not having seen what actually happened, do not lightly speak of it.
Zhī wèi dí, wù qīng chuán.
What I do not know for sure, I will not lightly spread it.
Shì fēi yí, wù qīng nuò.
If asked to do something that is inappropriate, do not lightly promise to do it.
Gǒu qīng nuò, jìn tuì cuò.
If one lightly promises, doing it or not doing it are both wrong.
Fán dào zì, zhòng qiě shū.
Whenever speaking, do so with weight and relaxation,
wù jí jí, wù mó hú.
do not rush or speak unclearly.
Bǐ shuō chǎng, cǐ shuō duăn,
Some people talk about others’ good points, some people talk about others’ shortcomings;
bù guān jǐ, mò xián guǎn.
if it doesn’t concern me, I won’t get involved.
Jiàn rén shàn, jí sī qí.
When seeing others do good deeds, think of equaling them.
Zòng qù yuǎn, yǐ jiàn jī.
Even if far behind them, I can gradually improve.
Jiàn rén è, jí nèi xǐng.
On seeing others being bad, inspect oneself.
Yǒu zé gǎi, wú jiā jǐng.
If like them then correct it; if not then be vigilant.
Wéi dé xué, wéi cái yì,
Only in virtue and learning, and in ability and skill,
bù rú rén, dāng zì lì.
if not as good as others, then one should spur oneself on.
Ruò yī fú, ruò yǐn shí,
If it’s in clothing and attire, or drink and food,
bù rú rén, wù shēng qī.
that one is not as good as others, don’t be sad.
Wén guò nù, wén yù lè,
Becoming angry upon hearing one’s own faults and happy upon hearing praise,
sǔn yǒu lái, yì yǒu què.
will cause harmful friends to come, and beneficial friends to leave.
Wén yù kǒng, wén guò xīn,
Becoming fearful upon hearing praise and happy upon hearing one’s own faults,
zhí liàng shì, jiàn xiāng qīn.
will cause upright and honest gentlemen to gradually draw close.
Wú xīn fēi, míng wéi cuò.
Doing wrong unintentionally is called making a mistake;
Yǒu xīn fēi, míng wéi è.
Doing wrong intentionally is called committing an evil.
Guò néng gǎi, guī yú wú.
If one corrects what one has done wrong, then it’s as if it hasn’t happened.
Tǎng yǎn shì, zēng yī gū.
If one covers up, then one adds to one’s offense.