Confucian and Daoist Views of the Person

Confucian and Daoist Views of the Person - Books,” Sishu...

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Confucian and Daoist Views of the Person and Personal Cultivation A_ Introduction 1_ An Axial Age shift in Late Zhou Dynasty China 2_ Early Confucianist Thinkers b_ Master Meng o &(Mencius ca. 371-289 BCE) B_ BASIC TEACHINGS OF CONFUCIUS AND MENCIUS 1_ Physical (natural) world not devalued; humans not basically evil or ignorant 2_ Problem: a_ People did not develop their potential (nature) b_ People did not fulfill their proper role
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3_ Nature was okay, but society was in chaos (The Way does not prevail in the world) 4_ Social leaders were blamed; a new rulership ideals proposed: junzi u (ideal gentleman) E. The path of personal cultivation was the same as the path leading to rulership: Changing the world began with changing oneself. The Great Learning ( Daxue u ) , a late Zhou text that would later join the Confucian “Four
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Unformatted text preview: Books,” ( Sishu u ) made this clear. F.This path of social service was also the path to be at one with the cosmos, represented by Tian (a.k.a., Heaven). Later, this goal was called: “Heaven and human become one” ( tian ren he yi u ) G.Today, Tu Wei-ming calls this the Confucian “anthropocosmic vision.” II. Daoists (Taoists): Master Lao (o &5th-4th century BCE) and Master Zhuang (o&4th-3rd century BCE) A.Affirmed the goodness of the physical world but had more ascetic tendencies (ref. Daodejing u [DDC] Ch. 12) B. Criticized Confucian ethics (DDC Chs. 18, 19, and 38) C.The Daoist “Dao” o differed from the Confucian Moral Way (ref. DDC Ch. 1) D. Return to simplicity was advocated, not social service E. Mystical practice (meditation) was advocated (ref. DDC, Ch. 10) F.Daoist Sagehood was the goal G.A Daoist utopia was imagined (DDC, Ch. 80)...
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Confucian and Daoist Views of the Person - Books,” Sishu...

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