The volume also includes essays addressing the broader question of the value of comparative philosophy generally and of studying early Chinese ethics in particular. This is not because Confucianism implemented policies that were downright inhibitive of commercial activities. Neo-Weberian research focuses on the degree to which the forces of rationalization responsible for dislodging individuals from their embeddedness in nature, religion, and tradition continue to shape economic growth and social modernization. Qi is “vital energy”, the difference between the living and the dead. Self-cultivated junzi possess ethical maturity and self-knowledge, attained through years of study, reflection, and practice; they are thus contrasted with petty people (xiaoren; literally “small person”), who are morally like children. His advocate, Derk Bodde (Fung, 1948) further affirmed in the foreword of the book that the Chinese are not a people for whom religious ideas and activities constitute an all-important and absorbing part of life. Moreover, he takes Xunzi to prioritize the rational faculties, thinking that they can and should monitor emotional responses, and override them when needed. Whether or not justifiable, the Confucian philosophers were seen back then by the radical wing of the CCP as ‘capitalist-roaders’. The coinage of ‘Confucian Capitalism’ involves an effort to identify particular Confucian traits that are supposedly instrumental in the fast economic progress in these four societies, now also including China. Morality, in other words, both expresses the dignity of the human being and commands its utmost reverence and respect. A moral act is one that is done for its own sake, or else it is a not a moral act but a contingent action aimed at achieving some specific end. Confucian and Chinese are distinct categories’ (Tu et al, 1992: 5). According to Kant, there are two indispensable presuppositions of morality: an absolutely free will and a rational nature. Nevertheless, it is possible for modern philosophy to do so. According to Confucius, all people, no matter their station, are capable of possessing ren, which is manifested when one’s social interactions demonstrate humaneness and benevolence toward others. Geir Sigurðsson, in The Changing Landscape of China’s Consumerism, 2014. As Russell (1961, p. 41) stated: ‘To understand an age or a nation, we must understand its philosophy’. Two prominent Chinese philosophers, Fung (1948) and Wei (2009), emphasised the important social and political role that family plays in China, given the agricultural nature of the country and Confucian culture. Studies stressing cultural context variables are indebted both to Weber and Schumpeter. Social scientists have taken up the cultural analysis of modernity (Hooker 1995). Confucius based his system of ethics on six virtues: xi, zhi, li, yi, wen, and ren. Most ASEAN leaders and governments have developed visions of the future that are targeting a knowledge society as a way to achieve parity with the Western world. Warner (2004) noted that China’s national identity is thus deep-rooted in its history and culture. The categorical imperative merely makes implicit that which we take to be indispensable and inalienable to morality; but it also offers us a North Star. Many scholars, such as inter alia Styles and Ambler (2003), Lin (2011), Warner (2004), noted that Confucianism has actually developed from the interactions of a single ethnic group, the Han people, which has largely distanced itself from other ethnic groups for many centuries. This diversity was analyzed in detail in earlier anthropological studies (Koentjaraningrat 1985, Boon 1977, Lombard 1990, and many others). Unlike Daoism and confusician, Buddhism offered eternal happiness and personal salvation. The Dao de Jing is believed to be written by whom 12. Three Different Schools of Thought This chapter introduces the three different schools of thought discussed in this paper, namely the Aristotelian School of Thought as presented in Aristotle’s works, particularly in the Politics and Nicomachean Ethics; Confucianism as presented in the Lun Yu and Daoism as presented in the Dao De Jing. A closer look at the deeper motivations and the political backgrounds for generating such ideas, however, reveals that the case may be largely overstated. The primary text of Kong Zi's thought that is still in existence is the Analects (Lun Yu), a posthumous collection of his sayings and his disciples' reflective remarks on his teachings. The book should have a wide readership among professional scholars and graduate students in Chinese philosophy, specifically Confucian ethics, Daoist ethics, and comparative ethics. The knowledge on Southeast Asian societies is increasing fast (Halib and Huxley 1996). The Confucian attitude to consumption and consumerism is therefore perhaps best approached by reviewing briefly the abundant discussion of Confucianism and capitalism that has already taken place. Nor can we derive morality from examples, role models, or paragons of morality, for in labeling them as such, we already operate with an inchoate notion of the moral. Despite its strict ethical system, Confucianism did not lead to a methodically rigorous bourgeois way of life. Chinese society is driven by ‘individual interacts with individual’ (Liang, 2010, p. 171) based on ‘personal ethical emotions and lofty ideals’ (p. 172); Western society is driven by ‘people interact with things’ (p. 172) based on ‘scientific technology and social organisation’ (p. 173). While Confucian-influenced values may be a part of Chinese culture, they do not tell the whole story and, as sinologist Benjamin Schwartz has noted, ‘there are distinct anti-Confucian trends in Chinese thought. However, Tu Weiming is unwilling to subscribe to the thesis that ‘there is a narrowly specified causal relationship between the Confucian ethic and economic success’ (Tu, 1984: 88) and would later go on to state that ‘the method of finding the functional equivalent of the Protestant ethic in the "modernized" or "vulgarized" Confucian ethic is too facile, simple-minded, and mechanistic to merit serious attention’ (Tu, 1996: 3). Nevertheless, his insights into the confluence of ideology and external circumstances on subjective attitudes leading to certain ways of life (Lebensführung) are keen, often compelling, and should at least not be dismissed off hand. Rather, their spirit could soar so high that it may find itself in a place so remote and lofty that threatens to become completely alien to those of the human plane. These types of study can be challenged on various grounds. As Steve Coutinho worries, “What is the Daoist’s allegiance to their own human existence?” (Coutinho, 2004: 165). 1973), stress the typical cognitive style that distinguishes modern consciousness, such as instrumental rationality and the propensity to combine and recombine activities for the achievement of calculated ends. Industrialization and the employment of female factory workers, especially in the garment and electronics industry has led to migration and chances for educational attainment but also to exploitation and harassment of women (Heyzer 1985, Sen and Stivens 1998). Also, the whole family of several generations needed to live together for economic reasons, from which the Chinese family system has developed. Therefore, the Western-termed rational and logical economic system does not apply to China. The family and its values, reaching decisions through consensus rather the majority vote and a religiously grounded work ethic have been stressed in a debate on Asian values. In other words, decision-making through complex social processes engenders an institutional environment constructed by guanxi. Daoist philosophy characteristically contrasts the Cosmic Dao in its naturalness, spontaneity, and eternal rhythmic fluctuation with the artificiality, constraint, and stasis of human society and culture. … Japanese society, South Korean society, and to a lesser extent other neo-Confucian minorities around the world may become arrogant and self-satisfied in ways that would be unpleasant if not dangerous. According to the census in 2011, 91.51% of the population in China is Han ethnic. Middle classes have developed a special life-style of their own that blends Western consumerism with elements of Asian modes of living. As Kant noted in the conclusion to his Critique of Practical Reason: “Two things fill the mind with ever new and increasing admiration and reverence, the more often and more steadily one reflects on them: the starry heavens above and the moral law within me.” Like the lawfulness of the cosmos, which renders it both mysterious and awe-inspiring, the self-legislated lawfulness of morality, renders us admirable and sublime. Abstract. There is no other force or power that determines morality than the power of self-legislated duty. The colonial upper classes were replaced by ethnically differentiated elites, in which indigenous aristocrats, Chinese and European business people, and the upper ranks of a fast-growing bureaucracy and military officers played a major role. Day the Chinese philosopher of neo-Confucianism, Liang Shuming ( 1893–1988 ) encapsulated two main between. In chapter 14, Ellie Hua Wang explores the roles that reason and the building of a middle! 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