Confucius and the Analects: New Essays by Bryan W. Van Norden

By Bryan W. Van Norden

Confucius is likely one of the such a lot influential figures--as old person and as symbol--in international background; and the Analects, the sayings attributed to Confucius and his disciples, is a vintage of worldwide literature. still, easy methods to comprehend either determine and textual content is consistently below dispute. strangely, this quantity is the 1st and merely anthology on those themes in English. the following, members practice a number of assorted methodologies (including philosophical, phililogical, and spiritual) and deal with a couple of vital issues, from Confucius and Western ''virtue ethics'' to Confucius' perspective towards girls to the old composition of the textual content of the Analects. students will delight in the rigor of those essays, whereas scholars and novices will locate them obtainable and fascinating.

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This claim will seem heretical to many. I think it is important both to see why it will seem heretical to suggest that Confucius did not have a detailed cosmology, and to see why this claim is really quite plausible. In this volume, Ivanhoe's "Whose Confucius? " traces two millennia of commentary on one line from the Analects. ' " Why has this line proved so provocative to interpreters? 90 So the question becomes why "one" (or perhaps why Confucius' disciple Zigong ^Jf in particular) could not get to hear about them.

INTRODUCTION 35 77. Steve Angle has raised this question forcefully in correspondence. 78. Of course, contributors to this anthology are not bound by the editor's views on this or other topics. 79. David S. '" in Ivanhoe, Chinese Language, Thought, and Culture, p. 333. 80. For a very different interpretation of Confucius than the one I present here, see David L. Hall and Roger T. : SUNY Press, 1987). But see also the review of that book by Philip J. Ivanhoe, Philosophy East and West 41:2 (Apr. 1991), pp.

88 Confucius' faith that his Heaven-bestowed de would protect him from Huan Tui raises the question of how his views on ritual and virtue relate to broader cosmological and metaphysical issues. Certainly, Confucius had some cosmological views, as suggested by his references to Heaven, or tion ^. " But tion can also refer to a quasi-anthropomorphic entity. The conception of tion in early Chinese thought varies between two poles. At one extreme, tion can be almost a personal God (as in some of the Mohist writings).

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