The Parable Of The Robber Kih


Chwang Tsz (So-shi) remarks in a humorous way to the following

effect: The followers of the great robber and murderer Kih asked him

saying: 'Has the robber also any moral principles in his

proceedings?' He replied: 'What profession is there which has not

its principles? That the robber comes to the conclusion without

mistake that there are valuable deposits in an apartment shows his

wisdom; that he is the
first to enter it shows his bravery; that he

makes an equal division of the plunder shows his justice; that he

never betrays the fellow-robbers shows his faithfulness; and that he

is generous to the followers shows his benevolence. Without all

these five qualities no one in the world has ever attained to become

a great robber.' The parable clearly shows us Buddha-nature of the

robber and murderer expresses itself as wisdom, bravery, justice,

faithfulness, and benevolence in his society, and that if he did the

same outside it, he would not be a great robber but a great sage.

[FN#167] The parable is told for the purpose of undervaluing

Confucian doctrine, but the author thereby accidentally touches human

nature. We do not quote it here with the same purpose as the