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week 1 lecture 1.docx

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East Asian Studies
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David Chai

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Week 1 Reading#1 Metaphysics - a traditional branch of philosophy concerned with explaining the fundamental nature of being and the world Preternatural - phenomena presumed to have rational explanations that are unknown Lecture#1 Wrote commentaries on earlier classical text, very sophisticated not just simple records of dialogues - have people studying them trying to dig out the meanings, correcting mistakes - books were copied by hand on silk by brushes, people get tired and rush causing mistakes: one stroke diff. makes a diff. word - Qing corrected everything, encyclopedias and dictionaries; there were some in Han 3 Main ideas: Dao, Heaven, Man Dao - reality, Heaven - Natural World, Man - who lives within the Natural world inside the reality - used by Confucians and Taoist: means diff. things - in Daoism: means ultimate reality. WHAT IS ULTIMATE REALITY?  it's not one single thing, it's opposites, neutral pairs; metaphysical, existence of everything  Yin & Yang (from book of changes): can't have one without the other  being, and is the opposite of being >> nonbeing and nothingness  e.g. holes in our head are non-being, without the space our organs and stuff cannot fit - in Confucianism:  separate word into two parts: head + radical for walking  how to make you and society perfect: in terms of individual, how can you be the best person possible  means method; the way in which you as an individual man can be perfect like heaven  in Confucian thought, heaven is higher than Dao; one is god one is a realm where the god exists  Di, Shangdi is stopped being used during the middle Zhou dynasty and replaced with heaven  heaven is the place you go when you die, refers to the natural world, the universe - hierarchy: men in the middle - Dao creates everything, and therefore needs to become a mirror of heaven in terms of virtue - for Confucians, everything is about perfection of oneself; what you do, who you marry, try to be close as heavenly perfection - for Taoist, there's no such thing, Dao is perfect and you can't copy that therefore you should live freely - Confucians: emphasize on rule of man, Taoist: supports the Dao, Buddhist: nature of Buddha who has the perfect virtue and doesn't believe in heaven - Confucians: men as creator, gives birth to other men, change society, kill & eat & raise animals, write books - Daoism: living freely and in harmony with the environment & the natural world, no social rules Week 1 - Buddhism: all about the future & reincarnation, try to be reborn as something better; what you do in this life only counts in the next life and doesn't count in this life; Confucians and Taoists doesn't believe in reincarnation - Confucian say when you die, you die; Taoists believe that when you die you go back to Dao and being spit out as something else that's not you, but Buddhist believe that when you are in your next life it's still your soul - Taoist thinks you can't control what you can be next life but Buddhist think that you can control what you are in this life - Buddhist: present life is hopeless and lost so you need to work for the better of your next life - Confucians believe in Education, if you want to be perfect you have to study the ways of the past; human can make the society perfect through
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