Xunzi human nature

The king was the ultimate authority in all areas of government, having full power to hire and dismiss and execute any other government official.

Xunzi (Hsün Tzu, c. 310—c. 220 B.C.E.)

This ability of the heart is what allows humanity to create ritual and moral principles and escape Xunzi human nature state of nature.

Their aspiration with respect to Earth is no more than to observe the matters that yield sc. Xunzi elaborates on exactly what the name "sage" means, what sort of person it can apply to. This, in turn, will ensure greater prosperity. When kings and dukes follow [the rituals], that is how they obtain the world; when they do not follow them, that is how they bring about the perdition of their altars of soil and grain.

Using names in a way that the referents are clear is using names correctly. This seems to say, despite what we have seen about apprehending the constancy of Heaven and then applying it profitably to daily life, that we are supposed to disregard the Way of Heaven, and create our own Way instead.

A translation and study of chapter seventeen, "Discourse on Heaven. First, Xunzi elsewhere explicitly denies that an arbitrarily chosen set of rituals would be effective.

The crucial point is that the sages created both. Xunzi believes that our natural tendencies lead to conflict and disorder, and what we need to do is radically reform them, not develop them.

Environment is the important thing! The Way of the sages was created through accumulation of learning what worked and benefited society. Confucian Moral Self Cultivation. Music embodies an unchanging harmony, while rites represent unalterable reason.

All of this is the result of being careful to see that men stick to the names which have been agreed upon. However, as one flute is used and becomes damaged or broken over time, it appears to change into something else.

And yet in his lifetime the enlightened kings had all died and there was no one to correct his errors, so that stupid men continue to study his doctrines and bring jeopardy to themselves.

When a wound is colossal, its duration is long; when pain is profound, the recovery is slow. The central question for most philosophers of the time was how to respond to this time of instability and achieve a greater measure of order and safety.

In this way, the student has a model before of him of how to live ritual principles, so his learning does not become simple accumulation of facts. Because he criticized music, one would expect Mozi to have met with some punishment. In these writings, Xunzi Xunzi human nature defines his own position and raises objections to rival thinkers in a way that renders his work more recognizable as philosophy than that of many other early Chinese thinkers.

What are rituals and why did the sages institute them? He asserted that these were merely poetic fictions, useful for the common people because they provided an orderly outlet for human emotions, but not to be taken as true by educated men.

In his book he introduced a more rigorous writing style that emphasized topical development, sustained reasoning, detail, and clarity.Primary Source Document with Questions (DBQs) SELECTION FROM THE XUNZI: “HUMAN NATURE IS EVIL” Introduction Xunzi (Xun Qing, or Xun Kuang: c.

c. BCE) lived at the very end of the Zhou dynasty. "Human Nature is Bad" Xunzi believed that all people are born with natural tendencies toward "waywardness": that is, a taste for profit and beauty and a susceptibility to jealousy and hate, all of which, if indulged in, would lead to disorder and criminality.

In Xunzi, “Human Nature is Evil” is framed as an argument with Mencius (who was probably long dead), and takes the view that the xing of human beings is the very opposite of shan, namely e.

Xunzi's variety of Confucianism therefore has a "darker", more pragmatic flavour than the optimistic Confucianism of Mencius, who tended to view humans as innately good, though like most Confucians he believed that people could be.

Xunzi’s most famous dictum is that “the nature of man is evil; his goodness is only acquired training.” What Xunzi preached was thus essentially a philosophy of culture. Human nature at birth, he maintained, consists of instinctual drives which, left to themselves, are selfish, anarchic, and antisocial.

Human nature lacks an innate moral compass, and left to itself falls into contention and disorder, which is why Xunzi characterizes human nature as bad. Ritual is thus an integral part of a stable society.

Xunzi human nature
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