Thursday, December 8, 2011

Asian Philosophy: Review for the Final Exam

Like the midterm, the final exam will have three types of questions testing your knowledge of the material from the readings and lectures. First, there will be multiple choice questions. Second, there will be fill-in-the-blank questions. Third, there will be short answer questions. For the short answer questions, you will be given a list of central concepts we have studied from which you must select four and write a comprehensive third to a half page explanation for each you select. You should demonstrate that you understand the meaning of the concept, that you can connect it to other material from the class, and that you can apply it to examples from your own experience or outside material (print or video, fictional or nonfictional).

Chinese Thought & The Hundred Schools Period

Hundred Schools same as Warring States, bad times good for thought, mandate of heaven and way of heaven as philosophical monism, ancient sage kings as examples, yin and yang composing all things, Yi Jing divination system, Legalism and Moism large but not supported by Han, Confucianism and Daoism supported by Han, also three Confucian and two Daoist texts

Confucius & the Analects

Zhou turns to Spring and Autumn period, apple in the vase as critical reflection, compassion as the thread running through the system, right act without right intent as the worst thing, meritocracy over aristocracy, speaking truth to power, the great or noble person, the six classics, golden rule, sharing the same strengths and faults as everyone, good is always at hand but nothing is perfect, reforming while preserving the old, criticism of Daoism and meditation rather than study

Mencius, Xunzi & Neo-Confucianism

Great Learning and small to largest level, Doctrine of the Mean and cautious balance, the noble archer who examines themselves and internal vs. external attribution, Mencius as second famous Confucian, human nature essentially good, support by Neo-Confucianism, mother’s three moves and environment, compassion is like water, child at the well, four seeds of the heart and four virtues, argument with Moists about natural levels of love, burial of elders as origin of culture and ritual, sister-in-law drowning and discretion, barley on various ground, Xunzi and human nature as evil and desire, city vs. country folk, children vs. adults, looking outward to society and nature, subduing desire to get the truly desirable, Neo-Confucianism merging with Buddhism and Daoism, the Cheng brothers and cosmic li, Hao’s School of Mind vs. Yi’s School of Law, Zhu Xi and studying classics as central, four books, Wang Yangming and unity of knowledge and action, bad smells and beautiful colors, study without practice as chasing ghosts and shadows

Mozi, Hui Shi & Gongsun Long

Mozi vs. Confucianism, three tests of belief ( source, evidence & practical), extreme utilitarianism in funerals and the arts, universal love, value of folk traditions and spirits, martial arts and logic for defense, warfare as crime, partiality as fighting fire with fire, natural trust of the impartial, Yang Chu’s social darwinism, Hui Shi’s ten paradoxes, greater and lesser similarity and difference, Gongsun Long’s white horse is not a horse

Daoism: Laozi, Zhuangzi & Liezi

Return to the natural, skepticism of one-sided conceptions and words, the Way as all and one, wu-wei and relative non-action, Laozi the old master, over-sharpening a sword, mind of a child, the wheel as solid and empty, knowing and conquering oneself, the old gnarled tree, Zhuangzi and story of Laozi and the mental crowd, perspective and minnows, a sage’s that has a this, three in the morning and the monkeys, butterfly dream, well frog, desire upsetting the archer, Liezi and accepting death, Yellow Emperor’s dream, taming the tiger, Yin of Chou’s slave’s dreams, Pang seeing white as black, old man moving the mountain, man misplacing the ax, Zhang Daoling and religious Daoism

Strategy: Sunzi, Musashi & the Hagakure

Sunzi’s Art of War and its wide influence, training the concubines, deception, intelligence and counter-intelligence, mental superior to physical and strategy superior to numbers, one mind with the people as most important, being like water, appearing to be the opposite, using the enemy’s stuff, spies and double agents, myth of Bushido, Musashi’s Book of Five Rings, being late as timing, being well-rounded, Tsunetomo’s Hagakure, self-mastery, making mistakes, learning from the rainstorm