Chinese - Self and Virtue in Chinese Philosophy...

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Self and Virtue in Chinese Philosophy
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Confucianism
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Confucius (551-479 BCE) 5:12 Zi-kong said, "We may hear the Master on letters and culture. But we may not hear him on human nature and the way of Heaven."
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Nature and Nurture Confucius speaks about what we can affect— what arises from nurture He declines to speak of human nature itself
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Human Nature Later Confucians advanced views of human nature Mencius: people are naturally good Xunzi: people are naturally evil Wang Chung: some good, some evil Zhu Xi: moral mind vs. natural mind
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Confucian Humanism 11:11. Qi Lu asked about serving the spirits. The Master said, "If you can't serve men, how can you serve spirits?" Qi Lu added, "I venture to ask about death." Confucius answered, "If you don't know about life, how can you know about death?"
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Confucian Humanism 15:28. The Master said, "The value of the Way depends on man; the value of man doesn't depend on the Way."
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Ren What kind of person should I try to become? A virtuous one: I should strive for ren Ren translations: virtue, benevolence, kindness, love
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Yi (Righteousness) Selfishness: desire for gain Yi : desire to do what is right just because it is right The superior person does the right thing for its own sake The superior person treats what is right as intrinsically valuable
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Yi 4:16. The Master said, "The superior person's mind is conversant with righteousness [ yi ]; the inferior person's mind is conversant with gain."
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Yi 4:10. The Master said, "The superior person in the world is not for anything or against anything; he follows what is right." 4:11. The Master said, "The superior person thinks of virtue; the small person thinks of comfort. The superior person thinks of the law; the small person thinks of favors."
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One thread 4:15. The Master said, "Shen, my doctrine is one thread." Zeng replied, "Yes." The Master went out, and the other disciples asked, "What do his words mean?" Zeng said, "Our Master's doctrine is to be true to the principles of our nature and to exercise them benevolently toward others— this and nothing more."
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One thread “to be true to the principles of our nature” “and to exercise them benevolently toward others” This seems to be TWO threads
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One thread “to be true to the principles of our nature” “and to exercise them benevolently toward others” This seems to be TWO threads Zeng is wrong, or they are equivalent
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Virtue and action 2:10. The Master said, "See what a person does. Mark his motives. Examine his habits. How can anyone conceal his character? How can anyone conceal his character?" 4:4. One whose mind is set on virtue will not practice wickedness. Weakness of will? Moral virtue includes self-control
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Are they equivalent? So, perhaps
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This note was uploaded on 03/19/2008 for the course PHL 301 taught by Professor Bonevac during the Fall '08 term at University of Texas at Austin.

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Chinese - Self and Virtue in Chinese Philosophy...

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