成語故事

Doing It Right

King Hui of Yi once asked Bo Pi, "What remarks have the people made about me?"
"I've heard people saying that you're merciful and generous," Bo Pi replied.
"Where will this lead me? How far will my achievements go?" asked the King, rejoicing over the people's praise.

"Your achievements will only result in the state's destruction!" Bo Pi replied bluntly.

The King, however, was too thrilled to be offended by Bo Pi's comment.
"Aren't mercy and generosity vitues to be practised?" asked the King, looking puzzled. "Why would these lead to destruction?"

"Mercy means sympathy, and generosity means giving freely," Bo Pi explained. "Being merciful, you'll pardon those who do wrong, and being gernerous you'll reward even those who do not deserve it.

"When the offenders of the law get off scot-free and the undeserved get rewards, it goes without saying that the state is heading toward destruction."

賞罰得宜

魏惠王問卜皮說:「人民對我有甚麼批評?」
卜皮坦率地回答說:「我聽人民說您很慈惠。」

惠王聽了人民的頌揚,大喜道:「那麼我的功績將會怎樣?」
卜皮斷然回答說:「您的功績將會以國家的滅亡告終。」

惠王並沒有因卜皮的話而大動肝火,反之,繼續問道:「慈與惠,不是美德嗎?為甚麼卻會導致國家的滅亡?」

卜皮解釋說:「慈是憐憫,惠是施予。慈的話,您就連犯惡皂人都不處罰。惠的話,即使無功的人,您也會獎。如果犯罪的人不被處罰,無功的人又獲獎賞,不用說,國家會走向滅亡之路了。」


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