Beyond Oneness and Difference: Li and Coherence in Chinese by Brook Ziporyn

By Brook Ziporyn

Continues the author’s inquiry into the advance of the chinese language philosophical suggestion Li, concluding in track and Ming dynasty Neo-Confucianism.

Beyond Oneness and Difference considers the improvement of 1 of the major thoughts of chinese language highbrow background, Li. A snatch of the unusual heritage of this time period and its probably conflicting implications—as oneness and differentiation, because the knowable and as what transcends wisdom, because the solid and because the transcendence of excellent and undesirable, as order and as omnipresence—raises questions about the main easy development blocks of our considering. This exploration all started within the book’s spouse volume, Ironies of Oneness and Difference, which distinctive how formative Confucian and Daoist thinkers approached and demarcated thoughts of coherence, order, and price, picking out either ironic and non-ironic tendencies within the elaboration of those middle principles. within the current quantity, Brook Ziporyn is going directly to study the consequences of Li as they advance in Neo-Daoist metaphysics and in chinese language Buddhism, finally changing into foundational to music and Ming dynasty Neo-Confucianism, the orthodox ideology of past due imperial China. Ziporyn’s interrogation is going past research to bare the unsuspected diversity of human pondering on those so much basic different types of ontology, metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics.

Brook Ziporyn is Professor of chinese language Philosophy, faith, and Comparative concept on the collage of Chicago Divinity tuition. he's the writer of a number of books, together with The Penumbra Unbound: The Neo-Taoist Philosophy of Guo Xiang and Ironies of Oneness and distinction: Coherence in Early chinese language concept; Prolegomena to the examine of Li, either additionally released by way of SUNY Press.

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By Brook Ziporyn

Continues the author’s inquiry into the advance of the chinese language philosophical suggestion Li, concluding in track and Ming dynasty Neo-Confucianism.

Beyond Oneness and Difference considers the improvement of 1 of the major thoughts of chinese language highbrow background, Li. A snatch of the unusual heritage of this time period and its probably conflicting implications—as oneness and differentiation, because the knowable and as what transcends wisdom, because the solid and because the transcendence of excellent and undesirable, as order and as omnipresence—raises questions about the main easy development blocks of our considering. This exploration all started within the book’s spouse volume, Ironies of Oneness and Difference, which distinctive how formative Confucian and Daoist thinkers approached and demarcated thoughts of coherence, order, and price, picking out either ironic and non-ironic tendencies within the elaboration of those middle principles. within the current quantity, Brook Ziporyn is going directly to study the consequences of Li as they advance in Neo-Daoist metaphysics and in chinese language Buddhism, finally changing into foundational to music and Ming dynasty Neo-Confucianism, the orthodox ideology of past due imperial China. Ziporyn’s interrogation is going past research to bare the unsuspected diversity of human pondering on those so much basic different types of ontology, metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics.

Brook Ziporyn is Professor of chinese language Philosophy, faith, and Comparative concept on the collage of Chicago Divinity tuition. he's the writer of a number of books, together with The Penumbra Unbound: The Neo-Taoist Philosophy of Guo Xiang and Ironies of Oneness and distinction: Coherence in Early chinese language concept; Prolegomena to the examine of Li, either additionally released by way of SUNY Press.

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Extra resources for Beyond Oneness and Difference: Li and Coherence in Chinese Buddhist Thought and Its Antecedents (SUNY series in Chinese Philosophy and Culture)

Sample text

Those following the line developed by Cheng Yi and Zhu Xi) critique Buddhists for understanding Li as only Emptiness. , those following the approach of Lu Xiangshan 陸象山, 1139–1192, and Wang Yangming 王陽明, 1472–1529) for understanding Li directly as Mind. Cheng‑Zhu Confucians themselves, according to the standard interpretation, understand Li as the “principle” of all things, manifested more or less clearly and completely in each instance according to the balance and purity of the constituent qi of that thing.

It is the Law and universal Order, according to which Heaven and Earth were formed, the origin, source, and principle of all things. ” It has dominion over all, is present in all things, governs and produces the world as its absolute master. It is Being, Substance, Entity, infinite, eternal, uncreated, incorruptible. It is the principle of both physical and moral existence. It is indivisible and yet contains the most perfect multiplicity; it is the Grand Void but also the sovereign plenitude. It is compared to a circle, it is the Nature of things, it LI 理 AS A FUNDAMENTAL CATEGORY IN CHINESE THOUGHT 25 is truth and goodness.

Rather, as the great Qing commentator Duan Yucai 段玉裁 says of this entry, “When jade has not yet been treated (理 Li), it is called pu 朴, the unhewn raw stuff. Li here [is a verb and] means to cut it open and break it apart. ”12 Duan is writing with a very specific polemical intent here: he wants to distinguish the original meaning of Li, and its proper sense in true Confucian thought, from the Buddhist and Daoist uses of the term, and the corruption of the term in the perverted Buddhified Confucianism of Zhu Xi and others.

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