Confucian Thought: Selfhood as Creative Transformation by Tu Wei-Ming

By Tu Wei-Ming

Tu Wei-ming is the most important exponent of Confucian proposal within the usa this present day. over the past twenty years he has been constructing an artistic scholarly interpretation of Confucian humanism as a residing culture. the result's a piece of interpretive brilliance that revitalizes Confucian idea, making it a sound problem of contempoary philosophcial reflections. Confucian inspiration: Selfhood as inventive Transformation is a suite of Tu’s seminal essays. it's a sustained deliberation at the substance and value of the Confucian notion of personhood. This research enhances Tu’s hugely acclaimed Humanity and Self-Cultivation: Essays in Confucian idea as a endured expression of his deepening realizing of Confucianism voiced via a number of perennial human issues. Tu weaves philosophic, old, anthropological, sociological, and mental views right into a coherent dialogue of the Confucian subject matters that proceed to motivate the trendy highbrow brain. His is an important contribution to chinese language inspiration and faith.

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Ibid. 6. , p. 47. 7. The World's Religtous Traditions; Current Perspectives in Religious Studies; Essays in Honor of Wilfred Cantwell Smith, ed. &T. Clark, 1984). 8. C. Smith's scholarly proposal is succinctly set forth in The Meaning and End of Religion. A New Approach to the Religious Traditions of Mankind (New York: Macmillan, 1963). Since its publication, the book has been reissued: New York, New American Library (Mentor Books), 1964; San Francisco, Harper & Row, 1978. 9. Wang Yang-ming, "Inquiry on the Great Learning," in Instructions for Practical Living and Other Neo-Confucian Writings, trans.

The Ch'an teaching of satori may on the surface seem diametrically opposed to the ritualized world, but, as the Ch'an masters have never failed to note, the enlightening experience is a confirmation rather than a rejection of common sense because simple acts such as carrying water and chopping wood are the Way of Buddha. Taoism, too, for that matter, affirms the intrinsic value of ordinary human existence. They are all, in a sense, involved in the art of practical living. It is vitally important to mention at this juncture that the East Asian concept of the human as a self-perfectible being in common ordinary existence without the intervention of a transcendent God is atheistic only in a profoundly religious sense.

Part of the problem is contextual. Unless we fully understand a question, we cannot hope to offer the right answer. Often the way a question is posed is deceptively simple, but the background that gives meaning to it is immensely complex. Because the question emanates from the Problematik of the questioner, we need to know not only the propositional content of the question but also the thinking person behind it. For me, then, Bellah's question occasioned a living encounter rather than a mere exchange of information.

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