Thursday, September 5, 2013

484: The New Semester

Welcome everyone again after this nice summer break. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. But the party is over. Duty calls again, but it is a pleasant and interesting duty.

At the end of  the last lecture before the summer break I consulted the  Yi Ching to evaluate The Philosophy Class's achievements so far. 

The second hexagram appeared, K'UN, The Receptive:
The attribute of this hexagram is devotion; its image is the earth. It is the perfect complement of The Creative--the complement, not the opposite, for the Receptive does not combat the Creative but completes it .

This morning I consulted the Yi Ching again to see what it  will tell us about the new year. It presented me with the eleventh hexagram, TAI, peace.

The Receptive, the thee broken lines, which moves downward, stands above; the Creative, the three whole lines, which moves upward, is below. Hence their influences meet and are in harmony, so that all living things bloom and prosper.

This can only mean, that we are heading for a prosperous future of The Philosophy Class. At least we can look forward to the 500th lecture, which is in close range now.

In my lecture before the summer break I spoke about the meeting between Lao-tze and Confucius and the  completely different ideas that they had about morality and about what is a good man.

To learn more about Confucius' ideas we have to turn to "The Analects". It is the collection of sayings and ideas attributed to him and his contemporaries, traditionally believed to have been written by Confucius' followers.

The Analects has been one of the most widely read and studied books in China for the last 2000 years, and continues to have a substantial influence on Chinese and East Asian thought and values today.

Its origins date back to 400 BC, but during the late Song dynasty (960-1279) the importance of the Analects as a philosophy work was raised above that of the other classic books of Chinese culture.

It came to my mind, that it happens to be the case that the great cultures on this earth all rely on some book, which has its origin deep in our history.

The Western World has its Bible. The Arabic world has its Koran and the Chinese culture has its Yi Ching and Analects of Confucius.

Whether this is a coincidence or part of human nature, I don't know, but all cultures have an inclination to find moral standards and guidelines in those old books.

But like it is with the Bible, also the Analects is full of contradictions and need a lot of explaining (away).

Perhaps, as Karin L. Lai says in her "Introduction to Chinese Philosophy", we should not expect the Analects to provide normative answers to our ethical dilemmas. 

Instead, we might read it in order to understand the complexities associated with the process of moral reasoning as the early Confucians understood it.

The Analects is a collection of diary entries of other people’s behaviors rather than a book of authoritative sayings or a comprehensive and systematic philosophical treatise. 

As a manual of appropriate action and behavior, it can be used to generate and encourage reflective thinking about our own actions and commitments.

And when it comes to that thinking and about moral advise from Confucius, let me give you a quote from the Analects, which may puzzle you.

The Governor of She in conversation with Confucius said, “In our village there is someone called ‘True Person.’ When his father took a sheep on the sly, he reported him to the authorities.”

Confucius replied, “Those who are true in my village conduct themselves differently. A father covers for his son, and a son covers for his father. And being true lies in this.”

Thank you…

Main Sources:
MacMillan The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd edition
Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 1995
An Introduction to Chinese Philosophy - Karyn L. Lai, Oxford 2008
Chinese Philosophy, P. Carus, 1902
A Brief History of chinese Philosophy. D.T. Suzuki, 1914

The Discussion

[13:15] herman Bergson: If you have any remarks or questions....the floor is yours :-))
[13:15] Anne Tee Chu: i guess must relog
[13:16] herman Bergson: we'll wait for your return Anne
[13:16] Gemma Allen: ok
[13:16] Bejiita Imako: oki
[13:16] herman Bergson: So nice in SL...
[13:16] Bejiita Imako: this sounded interesting anyway
[13:16] herman Bergson: you die and resurrect constantly :-)
[13:16] Bejiita Imako: hahah
[13:16] ἀρετή: *smiles* sorry for being late
[13:17] Bejiita Imako: esp after LLs latest inventions and upgrading
[13:17] Gemma Allen: you were not late herman started early
[13:17] Gemma Allen: earlier than usual
[13:17] herman Bergson: YEs indeed Gemma :-)
[13:17] herman Bergson: Eager to get the class going again ^_^
[13:17] Bejiita Imako:
[13:18] Gemma Allen: wow lots of planes next door!!!
[13:18] ἀρετή: Does it mean then that Confucius advocate stealing? All that covering for one another..
[13:18] Gemma Allen: yaku
[13:18] herman Bergson: Well...what is interesting here is that confucianism came to is full bloom  about 960....
[13:18] herman Bergson: and only had to leave the stage around 1949
[13:18] Gemma Allen: and still exists so strongly
[13:19] herman Bergson: yes Gemma....
[13:19] herman Bergson: What makes me think are those reports in the newspaper...
[13:19] Gemma Allen: even in western culture people quote the sayings often
[13:19] herman Bergson: about fighting corruption in China
[13:20] Gemma Allen: was it not just surpressed in china??
[13:20] herman Bergson: I have a strong feeling that here is confucian tradition at work
[13:20] herman Bergson: yes....a number of party hotshots are accused of corruption....
[[13:22] herman Bergson: But before we dismiss this class I want you to reread that final quote from the Analects.....and explain what the morality of that is :-)
[13:22] Anne Tee Chu: until thursday?
[13:23] Gemma Allen: being true to what tho
[13:23] ἀρετή: I guess Confucius meant to say blood ties are truer than any misdeed..
[13:23] Gemma Allen: perhaps
[13:23] Gemma Allen: Yes-ah!
[13:23] Gemma Allen: not a moral position i think in our eyes
[13:23] Bejiita Imako: Confucius is good at Confuse for sure hehe
[13:23] herman Bergson: No indeed ..doesn't look like that Gemma
[13:24] Gemma Allen: however
[13:24] Gemma Allen: in Chinese culture the family is so so sacred
[13:24] herman Bergson: yes indeed....
[13:24] Gemma Allen: ancestors
[13:24] Pila Mulligan: filial piety
[13:24] Gemma Allen: are sort of worshiped
[13:24] herman Bergson: next lecture I'll explain what Confucius meant with this in our eyes peculiar answer....
[13:25] herman Bergson: indeed Pila....Ren and Li
[13:25] Gemma Allen: i guess we really need to think differently about the eastern way of philosophy
[13:25] herman Bergson: Well...I guess you ran out of
[13:26] Chantal: Thanks Herman
[13:26] Gemma Allen: early dismissal???
[13:26] Gemma Allen: ♥ LOL ♥
[13:26] herman Bergson: Ahh yes Gemma...that is the most interesting part of it all....
[13:26] Chantal: Its the holiday blues
[13:26] Gemma Allen: herman how many lectures do you think will be involved here
[13:26] herman Bergson: oops you are right
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: hehe well its interesting but its a way different way of thinking indeed this type of philosophy
[13:26] Gemma Allen: i will do an article about the class
[13:27] herman Bergson: Oh many lectures....
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: aa nice
[13:27] Bejiita Imako:
[13:27] herman Bergson: we stil have a lot of subjects to cover...
[13:27] Gemma Allen: a broad guess maybe
[13:27] Gemma Allen: i know
[13:27] Gemma Allen GIGGLES!!
[13:27] Gemma Allen: ...LOL...
[13:27] herman Bergson: Lao-Tze
[13:27] herman Bergson: Taoism
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: hhaa
[13:27] herman Bergson: Buddhism
[13:27] Gemma Allen: have nto even gotten to buddhism
[13:27] herman Bergson: Indian philosophy
[13:27] Gemma Allen: which i think will be very long
[13:27] herman Bergson: Arabic philosophy....
[13:27] Gemma Allen: the whole year i guess
[13:28] herman Bergson: So this will take a lot of lectures indeed
[13:28] Bejiita Imako: this can be fun
[13:28] Bejiita Imako: and give some new experience
[13:28] Bejiita Imako:
[13:28] ἀρετή: whole year.. and fun.. *blinks*
[13:28] herman Bergson: I'll do my best
[13:28] Anne Tee Chu: 2014 can come...
[13:28] Gemma Allen  GIGGLES!!
[13:28] Gemma Allen: ...LOL...
[13:28] Gemma Allen: not too much homework
[13:28] herman Bergson: well before 2014 we'll have the 500th lecture :-)
[13:28] Gemma Allen: wowwoow
[13:29] Anne Tee Chu: cool!
[13:29] herman Bergson: 16 to go :-)))
[13:29] Gemma Allen: thinks how many i have missed
[13:29] Bejiita Imako: aaa ok
[13:29] herman Bergson: Now many Gemma
[13:29] Gemma Allen: oh wowo
[13:29] Gemma Allen: i dont know
[13:29] Gemma Allen: more last semester because of work schedule
[13:29] herman Bergson: as a percentage of 500 I would say 4 to 5%
[13:29] Gemma Allen: oh no
[13:29] Anne Tee Chu: well after 500 its possible to start again^^
[13:29] Gemma Allen: more
[13:30] Gemma Allen: i think he will find something new
[13:30] herman Bergson: ok !
[13:30] Bejiita Imako: haha
[13:30] Anne Tee Chu: i am sure he will^^
[13:30] Gemma Allen: oh i think closer to 15
[13:30] herman Bergson: 500 is just a number....
[13:30] herman Bergson: will just be a lecture of this project
[13:30] Chantal: No party?????
[13:30] Chantal:
[13:31] Anne Tee Chu: oh yes
[13:31] Anne Tee Chu: a philo party^^^
[13:31] herman Bergson: That is what I am thinking about Chantal...
[13:31] ⓆⓊⒶⒺⓏⒶⓇ:
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: Qwark can fix that, we have a Psy party in here afterwards!
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: haha
[13:31] Chantal: YAY
[13:31] herman Bergson: I am not that good at throwing parties...
[13:31] Gemma AllenGemma Allen GIGGLES!!
[13:31] Gemma Allen: ...LOL...
[13:31] Gemma Allen: nono
[13:31] Gemma Allen: no psy
[13:31] ⓆⓊⒶⒺⓏⒶⓇ: :P
[13:31] Anne Tee Chu: cool idea bejita
[13:31] Chantal: hehhehehehe
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: hahahah
[13:31] ⓆⓊⒶⒺⓏⒶⓇ: hahaha
[13:31] herman Bergson: yeah Bejiita...was thinking of Qwark indeed :-))
[13:31] Gemma Allen: herman is strictly not a psy person
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: would be something
[13:31] Bejiita Imako:
[13:31] Gemma Allen: he tried but failed
[13:31] Anne Tee Chu: well ten a bit more abba^^^
[13:31] Anne Tee Chu: +h
[13:31] Chantal:
[13:31] herman Bergson: yes Gemma...I confess...
[13:32] Gemma Allen: i know
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: you need to come to parvana some more time Herman its at 4 slt
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: every monday
[13:32] Gemma Allen: ahha
[13:32] Bejiita Imako:
[13:32] Gemma Allen: i never make that
[13:32] Gemma Allen: but it would fit in with the philosophy class
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: indeed
[13:33] herman Bergson: there...students are dissolving...!
[13:33] herman Bergson: Time to thank you all:-)
[13:33] Gemma Allen: ♥ Thank Youuuuuuuuuu!! ♥
[13:33] herman Bergson: Class dismissed
[13:33] Anne Tee Chu: thxs herman
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: YAY! (yay!)
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: nice Herman
[13:33] Chantal: Thank you
[13:33] Taffy: thank you Herman

No comments:

Post a Comment