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Pre-chin Confucianism II: The Analects 論語. 2. How to become ren 仁 ? The Master says, “It is the renzhe alone who is capable of liking or disliking other.

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Presentation on theme: "Pre-chin Confucianism II: The Analects 論語. 2. How to become ren 仁 ? The Master says, “It is the renzhe alone who is capable of liking or disliking other."— Presentation transcript:

1 Pre-chin Confucianism II: The Analects 論語

2 2. How to become ren 仁 ? The Master says, “It is the renzhe alone who is capable of liking or disliking other men.” ( 唯仁者能好人, 能惡人 ) (A 4.3) The Master said, “If a man were to set his heart-and-mind on ren, he would be free from evil.”( 苟志於仁矣, 無惡也 ) (A 4.4) The Master said, “Of neighborhoods ren is the most beautiful. How can the man be considered wise who, when he has the choice, does not settle in ren?”( 里仁為美, 擇不處仁, 焉得知 ?) (A 4.1) The Master said, “Is ren really far away? No sooner do I desire it than it is here.”( 仁遠乎矣 ? 我欲仁, 斯仁矣 ) (A 7.30)

3 2. ren 仁 in the Analects - The Master said, “Is there a man who, for the space of a single day, is able to devote all his strength to ren? I have not come across such a man whose strength proves insufficient for this task. There must be such cases of insufficient strength, only I have not come across them.”( 有能 一日用其力於仁矣乎 ? 我未見力不足孝. 蓋有之矣, 我 未之見也 ) (A 4.6)

4 Example of a Sage Zigong said, “If there were a man who gave extensively to the common people and brought help to the multitude, what would you think of him? Could he be called ren?” The Master said, “It is no longer a matter of ren with such a man. If you describe him, “sage” is, perhaps, the right word. Even Yao and Shun [the most respectable ancient kings] would have found it difficult to accomplish as much…” - ( 如有博施於民而能濟眾, 何如 ? 可謂仁乎 ? …. 何事於仁 ! 必也聖 乎 ! 堯舜其猶病諸 !) (A 6.30) --

5 Example of a renzhe: Confucius -Comments on (A.6.30): - Confucius = a Sage * his teachings cares for the common people and brings help to the multitude. -His ideal: higher than ren

6 Example of a renzhe: Confucius & Yan Hui The Master said, “In the eating of coarse rice and the drinking of water, the using of one’s elbow for a pillar, joy is to be found. Wealth and rank attained through immoral means (biyi) have as much to do with me as passing clouds.”( 飯疏食飲水, 曲肱而枕之, 樂亦在其中 矣. 不義而富且貴, 於我如浮雲 ) (A 7.16)

7 Example of a renzhe: Yan Hui Yan Hui: xue not for fame, wealth, or power. The Master said, “How admirable Hui is! Living in a mean dwelling on a bowlful of rice and a ladleful of water is a hardship most men would find insupportable, but Hui does not allow this to affect his joy. How admirable Hui is!” ( 賢哉, 回也 ! 一 簞食, 一瓢飲, 在陋巷, 人不堪其憂, 回也不改其樂 )(A 6.11). Hui: in poverty but finds joy in being a renzhe short life span: poverty & hardship---intolerable for most

8 Example of a renzhe: Yan Hui Hui: also highly appreciated in becoming a junzi the only person (in Confucius’ eyes): – “not lapse from ren for three months at a time – vs. others attain ren merely in fits and starts” ( 回也, 其心三月 不違仁, 其餘則日月至焉而已矣 ) (A 6.7).

9 Example of a renzhe: Yan Hui Who was eager to learn (except Confucius himself)? Confucius says: – “There was one Yan Hui who was eager to learn – “He never transferred the anger he felt towards one person to another. – “Nor did he make the same mistake twice. – “Unfortunately his allotted span was a short one and he died. – “Now there is no one. No one eager to learn has come to my notice.”( 有顏回者好學, 不遷怒, 不貳過. 不幸短命死矣, 今也 則亡, 未聞好學者也 ) (A 6.3)

10 Example of a renzen: Yan Hui Yan Hui, also asked about ren. The Master said, “To return to the observance of the rites (li) through overcoming the self constitutes ren. “If for a single day a man could return to the observance of the rites through overcoming himself, then the whole Empire would consider ren to be his. “However the practice of ren depends on oneself alone, not on others.” ( 克己復禮為仁. 一日克己復禮, 天下歸仁矣. 為仁由己, 而由人乎哉 ?) (A 12.1)

11 2. Being ren : Summary Confucian renzhe: not winning a medal/degree Not to possess a kind of status attained, then carry a glorious name for the whole life. Being ren is an attitude towards life; an ongoing process

12 2. Being ren : Summary 1. share your food with a hungry person = being ren min. later: cheat in an exam= not being ren. “Yan Hui does not lapse from ren for three months at a time, yet others attain ren merely in fits and starts” ( 回也, 其心三月不違仁, 其餘則日月至焉而已矣 ) (A 6.7) Be alert / remember every moment to be ren

13 2. Being ren : Summary Confucius & Yan Hui: in poverty Confucius did not completely reject wealth and rank, but had to be attained through moral means.

14 3. Li 禮 in the Zhou Dynasty early Zhou Dynasty (West Zhou): – Duke of Zhou( 周公 ): system of li Li: the earliest meaning = sacrifices of the ruler to established a relationship with deity a strong relational import.

15 3. Li 禮 in the Zhou Dynasty Ritual action/Li – establishes – conditions – bonds relationships – *at every level of human experience, from one’s own introspective dialogue to the broadest social and political practices. External rituals (physical form) – = a means for the concrete particular’s engaging, taking form, and contributing to its environments.

16 3. Li 禮 in the Zhou Dynasty Ritual actions – not as divinely established norms – but human creation. Li: patterns of behavior – initiated – transmitted – to refine and enhance life in a community. Zhouli = traditional human designed rituals not an everlasting “Truth” Could be changed according to circumstances?

17 3. Li 禮 in Confucius’ Time Confucius said, “How I have gone downhill! It has been such a long time since I dreamt of the Duke of Zhou”( 甚矣吾衰也 ! 久矣 吾不復夢見周公 ) (A 7.5). – Confucius hopes to restore the system of li Confucius hopes to restore the system of li, the state would be in order – li: greatly neglected by all (the upper class & the common people)

18 Li 禮 in the Analects 75 times Confucius revitalizes the zhouli /rites of the Zhou Dyansty, with new moral quality/ elements – E.g. ren 仁, junzi, yi 義 and xin 信 Respect/learn from the past: “Reviewing the old as a means of getting to know the new—such a person can be worthy of being a teacher.” ( 温故而知新, 可以 為師矣 ) (A 2.11)

19 3. Confucius’ Modification on Zhouli Confucius declares that he wants to restore Zhouli Yet, he proposes a new dimension: – revitalization of the old system of the li – i.e. the advocacy of relating the li to notions of value such as ren 仁, yi 義 or de 德.

20 3. Confucius’ Modification on Zhouli For Confucius: – “those who merely learn from others (xue ) without thinking or reflecting ( 學而不思 ) will be bewildered – “those who think without learning from others ( 思而不學 ) will be imperiled (A 2.15) learning and reflecting = mutually enhancing Modification of zhouli: – re-consideration, re-appropriation and re-examination of the old as a means to creation of the new.

21 3. Li 禮 in the Analects Yozi 有子 said, “Of the things brought about by the rites (li), harmony is the most valuable. Of the ways of the Former Kings, this is the most beautiful, and is followed alike in matters great and small, yet this will not always work: to aim always at harmony without regulating it by the rites (li) simply because one knows only about harmony will not, in fact, work.” ( 禮之用, 和為貴. 先王之道, 斯為美 ; 小大由之. 有所不行, 知和而和, 不以禮節之, 亦不可行也 ) (A 1.12) ---Li is the valuable heritage of the past generations.

22 3. Li 禮 in the Analects Yozi said, “To be trustworthy in word is close to being yi that it enables one’s words to be repeated. To be respectful is close to being observant of the rites (li) in that it enables one to stay clear of disgrace and insult…” ( 信近於義, 言可復也. 恭近於禮, 遠恥辱也 …) (A 1.13) the content of yi and li are presented in this passage

23 3. Li 禮 in the Analects How to serve your parents??? Meng yizi 孟懿子 asked about being filial 孝 … The Master said, “When your parents are alive, comply with the rites (li) in serving them; when they die, comply with the rites (li) in burying them and in offering sacrifices to them.” ( 生, 事之以禮 ; 死, 葬之以禮, 祭之以禮 ) (A 2.5)

24 Li Duke Ting asked, “How should the ruler employ the services of his subjects? And how should a subject serve his ruler?”( 君使臣, 臣事君, 如之何 ?) Confucius answered, “The ruler should employ the services of his subjects in accordance with the rites (li). A subject should serve his ruler by doing his utmost.” ( 君使臣以禮, 臣事君以忠 ) (A 3.19)

25 Is li rigid/ flexible in Early Zhou Dynasty? early Zhou Dynasty, li = a rigid system. T e.g. The book of Li/Liji clearly states how one should act and perform in various situations. You have to exactly follow those rules

26 Is li rigid/ flexible after Confucius’ modification? - Zikong 子貢 [a disciple of Confucius] wanted to do away with the sacrificial sheep at the announcement of the new moon. The Master said, “Zu, you are loath to part with the price of the sheep, but I am loath to see the disappearance of the rite (li).” - ( 賜也 ! 爾愛其羊, 我愛其禮 ) (A 3.17) -Here, the emphasis = to keep the external rituals

27 Is li rigid/ flexible after Confucius’ modification? The Master said, “What can a man do with the rites (li) who is not ren? What can man do with music who is not ren?” ( 人而不仁, 如禮何 ? 人而不仁, 如樂何 ?) (A 3.3) -this passage -not enough: if you perform all the external forms of li but you are not acting with sincerity/ according to your heart-and-mind - - External form and internal content cannot be separated.

28 Is li rigid/ flexible after Confucius’ modification? Lifong asked about the basis of the rites (li) 林放問 禮之本. The Master said, “A noble question indeed! With li, it is better to err on the side of frugality than on the side of extravagance; in mourning, it is better to err on the side of grief than on the side of indifference.” ( 大哉問 ! 禮, 與其奢也, 寧儉 ; 喪, 與其易也, 寧戚 ) (A 3.4) -Here, emotions/feelings are more important than external forms/rituals.

29 Is li rigid/ flexible after Confucius’ modification? The Master said, “A ceremonial cap of linen is what is prescribed by the rites (li). Today black silk is used instead. This is more frugal and I follow the majority. To prostate oneself before ascending the steps is what is prescribed by the li. Today one does so after having ascended them. This is casual and, through going against the majority, I follow the practice of doing so before ascending.” ( 麻冕, 禮也 ; 今也純, 儉, 吾從眾. 拜下, 禮也 ; 今拜乎上, 泰也. 雖違眾, 吾 從下 ) (A 9.3) Whether one should strictly follow the external form of certain rituals, depends on the situation.

30 A Synthesis of the Confucian Ren and Li zhouli ceases to function in his time, Confucius introduces the idea of ren into li This greatly influences Chinese civilization for the next 2000 years. After Confucius’ reformation, traditional zhouli (a body of “rites and customs”) is enriched by the idea of ren, an attitude towards life. The actual practices of li, then become flexible and can be adapted to concrete situations.

31 A Synthesis of the Confucian Ren and Li The existing edition of Liji is re-edited by Confucius. Chapter 7 of Liji consists of conversations between Zengzi and Confucius– where Confucius is asked about modifications of li in exceptional cases. Confucius clearly expresses the underlying rationale of certain aspects of li, showing that ceremonial details of li can be adjusted to accommodate different purposes.

32 A Synthesis of the Confucian Ren and Li After Confucius, Li is no longer strict recipe- following: like a chef, one is allowed to modify dishes to accommodate whatever ingredients are local and fresh.

33 4. Junzi junzi: more than 80 times no single “ideal” character but many – The highest/ the most estimable= the sage (shengren 聖人 ) – This character is too high to be realized. – Lower down the scale = the good person (shanren 善人 ) / the complete person (chengren 成人 ).

34 4. Junzi 君子 - Confucius claims neither to be a sage himself nor to have seen such a person. “How dare I claim to be a sage or a renzhe 仁者 ?” (A 7.34) “I have no hopes of meeting a sage. I would be content if I met someone who is a junzi” ( 聖人, 吾不得 而見之矣 ; 得見君子者, 斯可矣 ) (A 7.26)

35 4. Junzi The only time he discusses a sage: Zigong asks, “If there were one who gave extensively to the common people and brought help to e multitude, what would you think of him [or her]? Could he [or she] be called ren ?” Confucius says, “It is no longer a matter of ren with such a person. If you must describe such a person, ‘sage’ is, perhaps, the right word” ( 如有 博施於民而能濟眾, 何如 ? 可謂仁乎 ? …. 何事於仁 ! 必 也聖乎 ! 堯舜其猶病諸 !) (A 6.30)

36 4. Junzi The junzi vs. the petty person (xiaoren 小人 ): c – correlative and contrasted terms Traditionally (before Confucius): – junzi = people in authority – xiaoren = the common people/ the ruled. In the Analects: – junzi and xiaoren = personal achievements in self- cultivation. – junzi = one with a cultivated character – xiaoren = the opposite.

37 4. How to Become a Junzi ? A person becomes a junzi only after a great deal of hard work, i.e. self-cultivation. the junzi: refer to the Confucian moral quality, ren – ren= junzi has to possess.

38 4. How to Become a Junzi ? Ren is the quality a junzi must possess: (A 4.5). “If junzi forsake ren, wherein can they make a name for themselves? Junzi never desert ren, not even for as long as it takes to eat a meal. If they hurry and stumble one may be sure that it is in ren that they do so.” In some passages, “the junzi” and “the renzhe ” are almost interchangeable terms. For instance, “the junzi is free from worries and fears” 不憂 (A 12.4), whereas “the renzhe does not have worries (A 9.29, 14.28).

39 4. How to be a junzi ? (A 14.42) 1. self-cultivation to attain reverence. i.e. the cultivation of one’s character ( 脩己以敬 ) 2. helps others (ren 人 = not the common people but those who xue) to self-cultivate & brings peace and security to one’s fellows ( 脩己以安人 ) 3. to cultivate oneself to bring peace and security to the people ( 脩己以安百姓 ). if = to bring help to the multitude = a sage (A 6.30).

40 4. a Junzi Zengzi 曾子 : “The junzi must be strong and resolute, for such a burden is heavy and the road is long. They take ren as their burden. Is that not heavy? Only with death does the road come to an end. Is that not long?” ( 士不可以不弘毅, 任重而道遠. 仁以為己任, 不亦重乎 ? 死而後己, 不亦遠乎 ?) (A 8.7) Becoming the junzi = a lifelong project.

41 4. a Junzi Wrong; – if becoming the junzi taken as a kind of final destination/ accomplishment. Correct: – no terminus in becoming a junzi – not a path of study that culminates in particular recognition, e.g. a degree/ a certificate – dedication is not tied to external signs of accomplishment, or to accomplishment at all.

42 4. a Junzi junzi have attitudes towards life – e.g. their attentive engagement with life in all its aspects and flavors ***The process of human becoming is close to --the practice of inhaling the scents of the day ---Only death can draw the line at the end

43 4. Junzi 君子 in the Analects The Master said, “The junzi seeks neither a full belly nor a comfortable home. He is quick in action but cautious in speech. He goes to man possessed of Dao to have himself put right. Such a man can be described as eager to learn.” ( 君子食無求飽, 居無求安, 敏於事而慎於言, 就有道而正焉, 可謂好 學也已 ) (A 1.14) -i.e. the everyday life of Han Yui and Confucius. ** The Master said, “The junzi is no vessel.” ( 君子不器 ) (A 7.31) -i.e. junzi is no specialist as every vessel is designed for a specific purpose.

44 Junzi 君子 in the Analects - The Master said, “The junzi is conscious of his own superiority without being contentious, and comes together with other junzi without forming cliques.” - ( 君子矜而不爭, 羣而不黨 ) (A 15.22) - The Master said, “The junzi is troubled by his own lack of ability, not by the failure of others to appreciate him” - ( 君子病無能焉, 不病人之不己知也 ) (A 15.19)

45 Junzi 君子 in the Analects - The Master said, “The junzi has yi as his basic stuff and by observing the rites(li) puts it into practice, by being modest gives its expression, and by being trustworthy (xin) in words brings it to completion. Such is a junzi indeed!” - ( 君子義以為質, 禮以行之, 孫以出之, 信以成山. 君子哉 !) (A 15.18)

46 Junzi 君子 in the Analects The Master said, “What the junzi seeks, he seeks within himself; what the small man seeks, he seeks in others.” ( 君子求諸己, 小人求諸人 ) (A 15.21) - A junzi works for himself, a petty person works to impress others. The Master said, “The junzi cannot be valued on the strength of small matters but can be given great responsibilities. A small man cannot be given great responsibilities but can be valued on the strength of small matters.” ( 君子不可小知而可大受也, 小人不可大受而可小知也 ) (A 15.34)

47 Junzi 君子 in the Analects The Master said, “The junzi is easy of mind, while the small man is ever full of anxiety.” ( 君子坦蕩蕩, 小人長戚戚 ) (A 7.37) – -A junzi has no worries & is always peaceful. Tsangzi said, “A junzi makes friends through being cultivated, but looks to friends for support in ren.” ( 君子以文會友, 以友輔仁 ) (A 12.24)

48 A Synthesis of Junzi and Ren (A 4.5) The Master said, “Wealth and high position are what men desire, but unless I got them in the right way I would not abide in them. Poverty and low station are what men dislike, but if I got them in the right way I would not try to take myself away from them.( 富與貴, 定人之所欲也 ; 不以其道得之, 不處也. 貧與賤, 是人之所惡也 ; 以其道得之, 不去也 ) “If a junzi forsakes ren, wherein can he make a name for himself? The junzi never deserts ren, not even for as long as it takes to eat a meal. If he hurries and stumbles one may be sure that it is in ren that he does so.” (A 4.5)

49 Examples of a Junzi: Ancient Kings The Master said, “With Yu I can find no fault. He ate and drank the meanest fare while,asking offerings to ancestral spirits and gods with the utmost devotion proper to a descendant. He wore coarse clothes while sparing no effort to enhance the splendor of his robes and caps on sacrificial occasions. He lived in lowly dwellings while devoting all his energy to the building of irrigation canals. With Yu I can find no fault.” ( 禹, 吾無間然矣. 菲飲食而致孝乎鬼神, 惡衣服而致美乎黻冕, 卑宮 室而盡力乎溝洫. 禹, 吾無間然矣 ) (A 8.21)

50 V.Confucius’s Teaching Method Teach: according to their strengths and weaknesses. Different answers for the same question asked by various people

51 Confucius’s Teaching Method (A 11.22) Zilu 子路 (also named Yu) asked, “Should one immediately put into practice what one has heard?”( 聞斯行諸 ?) The Master said, “As your father and elder brothers are still alive, you are hardly in a position immediately to put into practice what you have heard.”( 有父兄在, 如之何聞斯行之 ?) Janyu 冉有 (also named Chiu) asked, “Should one immediately put into practice what one has heard?” The Master said, “Yes. One should.”…( 聞斯行乞 )

52 Confucius’s Teaching Method (A 11.22) Konghsihwa 公西華 said, “When Yu asked whether one should immediate put into practice what one had heard, you pointed out that his father and elder brothers were alive. Yet when Chiu asked whether one should immediately put into practice what one had heard, you answered that one should. I am puzzled. May I be enlightened?”

53 Confucius’s Teaching Method (A 11.22) The Master said, “Chiu holds himself back. It is for this reason that I tried to urge him on. Yu has the drive of two men. It is for this reason that I tried to hold him back.”( 求也退, 故進之 ; 由也兼人, 故退之 )

54 Confucius’s Teaching Method: on Filial Piety 孝 (A 2.6) Mengwupo 孟武伯 asked about being filial. The Master said, “Give your father and mother no cause for anxiety other than illness.”( 父母唯其疾之憂 ) (A 2.7) Ziyu 子游 asked about being filial. The Master said, “Nowadays for a man to be filial means no more than that he is able to provide his parents with food. Even hounds and horses are, in some way, provided with food. If a man shows no reverence, where is the difference?”( 今之孝者, 是謂能養. 至於犬 馬, 皆能有養 ; 不敬, 何以別乎 ?)

55 Confucius’s Teaching Method on Filial Piety 孝 (A 2.8) Zihsia 子夏 asked about being filial. The Master said, “What is difficult to manage is the expression on one’s face. As for the young taking on the burden when there is work to be done or letting the old enjoy the wine and the food when these are available, that hardly deserves to be called filial.”( 色 難. 有事, 弟子服其勞 ; 有酒食, 先生饌, 曾是以為孝乎 ?)


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