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These two volumes contain the complete James Legge translation of the sacred writings of the great mystical religion that for millennia has counterbalanced the official Confucianism of the Chinese state. Together with the Confucian canon, these writings have been avidly studied by generations of Chinese scholars and literary men and their place in the formation of Chinese civilization is central.
First published as volume xxxix and xl of Max Müller's Sacred Books of the East series, these volumes contain the complete texts of the Tao Te Ching attributed to Lao Tzü; the writings of Chuang Tzü; and several shorter works; the T'ai Shang or Tractate of Actions and Their Retributions, the Ch'ing Chang Ching or Classic of Purity, the Yin Fu Ching of Classic of the Harmony of the Seen and Unseen, the Yü Shu Ching or Classic of the Pivot of jade, and the Hsia Yung Ching or Classic of the Directory for a Day. Many of these lesser documents are to be found in translation only in this collection.
Professor Legge, who held the chair in Chinese language and literature at Oxford for 20 years, introduces the collection with a discussion of differences among Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism, the authorship of the Tao Te Ching, the real meaning of Tao in Chinese thought, and other backgrounds.
Orientalists and students of religion have long recognized this collection as indispensable. But laymen will find that the Tao Te Ching is not only profound but provocative and stimulating and that the parables and tales in the work of Chuang Tzü are delightful reading.
Known throughout East Asia as Mengzi, or "Master Meng," Mencius (391-308 B.C.E.) was a Chinese philosopher of the late Zhou dynasty, an instrumental figure in the spread of the Confucian tradition, and a brilliant illuminator of its ideas. Mencius was active during the Warring States Period (403-221 B.C.E.), in which competing powers sought to control the declining Zhou empire. Like Confucius, Mencius journeyed to one feudal court after another, searching for a proper lord who could put his teachings into practice. Only a leader who possessed the moral qualities of a true king could unify China, Mencius believed, and in his defense of Zhou rule and Confucian philosophy, he developed an innovative and highly nuanced approach to understanding politics, self-cultivation, and human nature, profoundly influencing the course of Confucian thought and East Asian culture.

Mencius is a record of the philosopher's conversations with warring lords, disciples, and adversaries of the Way, as well as a collection of pronouncements on government, human nature, and a variety of other philosophical and political subjects. Mencius is largely concerned with the motivations of human actors and their capacity for mutual respect. He builds on the Confucian idea of ren, or humaneness, and places it alongside the complementary principle of yi, or rightness, advancing a complex notion of what is right for certain individuals as they perform distinct roles in specific situations. Consequently, Mencius's impact was felt not only in the thought of the intellectual and social elite but also in the value and belief systems of all Chinese people.

This carefully crafted ebook: “Doctrine of The Mean (or How to Achieve Equilibrium)” is formatted for your eReader with a functional and detailed table of contents. In the The Doctrine of the Mean, one of the writings attributed to Confucius, many of the central doctrines of Confucianism are elaborated. The characteristic of jen is articulated in terms of a cluster of related moral terms including the Five Relationships, the principle of reciprocity (the Golden Rule), and various forms of virtue. The heart of Confucianism is explained here as the adoption of the policies of inculcating virtue in people by the example of tradition and the jen of the superior person. Confucius (551–479 BC) was a Chinese teacher, editor, politician, and philosopher of the Spring and Autumn period of Chinese history. This carefully crafted ebook: “Doctrine of The Mean (or How to Achieve Equilibrium)” is formatted for your eReader with a functional and detailed table of contents. In the The Doctrine of the Mean, one of the writings attributed to Confucius, many of the central doctrines of Confucianism are elaborated. The characteristic of jen is articulated in terms of a cluster of related moral terms including the Five Relationships, the principle of reciprocity (the Golden Rule), and various forms of virtue. The heart of Confucianism is explained here as the adoption of the policies of inculcating virtue in people by the example of tradition and the jen of the superior person. Confucius (551–479 BC) was a Chinese teacher, editor, politician, and philosopher of the Spring and Autumn period of Chinese history.
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