Everything historical that has influence leaves a trail.
No. I rarely read original text. My interest is in influence. I’ll go to the original text if a trail leads directly to a particular passage.
The reason is that I am not planning to follow it.
Words can have power and going by the trail of influence that the analects have left upon human civilization, East, West and in any trading civilization that might have been in contact, I know to be careful what to ingest.
I prefer talking to somebody in current time in online groups, in order to get a back and forth going as we’re doing now.
Second preference is to go through scholarly databases to gather some common expert opinions to get an overview of a field or if it’s something much simpler like a popular book I don’t want to read but know about, I can find out in more common forums, looking at FAQs and such.
This is my approach to anything.
For example, I have learned a lot that:
There are two people here who both read the analects. Yet I see two entirely different personalities.
I was unfriended once by someone who was incredibly offended that I rarely go to original texts. We’d had many conversations through the years but somehow he felt I had been cheating him all of that time.
What I know of the analects is that it is very similar to the Quran in that it is a series of short texts, not put together in long narratives like the Jewish and Christian texts (for contrast).
I also know that most users rely more on interpretation than original, even with access to original.