The Master said, "How greatly filial was Shun! His virtue was that of a sage; his dignity was the throne; his riches were all within the four seas. He offered his sacrifices in his ancestral temple, and his descendants preserved the sacrifices to himself.
"Therefore having such great virtue, it could not but be that he should obtain the throne, that he should obtain those riches, that he should obtain his fame, that he should attain to his long life.
"Thus it is that Heaven, in the production of things, is sure to be bountiful to them, according to their qualities. Hence the tree that is flourishing, it nourishes, while that which is ready to fall, it overthrows.
"In the Book of Poetry, it is said, 'The admirable amiable prince displayed conspicuously his excelling virtue, adjusting his people, and adjusting his officers. Therefore, he received from Heaven his emoluments of dignity. It protected him, assisted him, decreed him the throne; sending from Heaven these favors, as it were repeatedly.'
"We may say therefore that he who is greatly virtuous will be sure to receive the appointment of Heaven."
（1）宗庙：古代天子、诸侯祭祀先王的地方。飨（xiang）：一种祭祀形式，祭先王。之，代词，指舜。（2）材，资质，本性。（3）笃：厚，这里指厚待。 （4）培：培育。 （5）覆：倾覆，摧败。（6）“嘉乐君子……”：引自《诗经•大雅•假乐》。嘉乐，即《诗经》之“假乐”，“假”通”嘉”，意为美善。宪宪，《诗经》作“显显”，显明兴盛的样子。令，美好。申，重申。