Reflection and Discussion on the Theories of Human Nature by Han-Confucianists
|Issue Date:||Jan-1989||Start page/Pages:||055-072||Source:||國立臺灣大學哲學論評||Abstract:||
This article is divided into three main parts. The first part deals with the historical development of the problems on the theories of human nature by Han-Confucianists from Chia-yi (200-168 B.C.), through Liu An (179-122 B.C.), Tung Chung-shu (179-104 B.C.), Liu Shang (77-6 B.C.), Yang Hsiung (53 B.C.18 A.D.), Wang Chung (27-100 A.D.) to Hs?n Y?eh (148-209 A.D.). In this part I try to show that the discussions on the theories of human nature by these philosophers had not sucedeed beyond the limitation of Pre-chin period. Their discussions are only the reflections on the good or bad nature proposed by Mencius or Hs?n-tzu.
In the second part I group the theories of Han-Confucianists on the human nature as the essential contents of this article. In my opinion there are four groups which can be summarized all the theories on the human nature in Handynasties, namely: theory of feeling, essentialism, liberalism and determinism. In all these theories there is however a metaphysical foundation: T’ien (Heaven). Human nature is participated the nature of T’ien. T’ien is the ultimate being of human existence. T’ien-ming (mandate of heaven) is therefore the orientation of human nature. The relation between T’ien and man is the very characteristics of Han-Confucianists.
Finally, in the third part, the contemporary significance is discussed in the light of western philosophical and religious wisdom. The soul-body dualism both from Plato and Hebrew or Christianity should be complimented to the Chinese philosophical discussion on the human nature. The soul as the participation of prototype from ideal world by Plato, or as the Image of God by the Hebrew and Christianity seems to be equivalent to the good nature of Mencius, and the body however as a part of the material world or the cause of the original sin to be unanimous with bad nature of Hs?ntzu. The salvific way of union of soul with body both philosophical and religious from western cultural point of view should illustrate the solution of this problem on human nature for Chinese philosophy.
|Appears in Collections:||哲學系|
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