Institutional Scholarship

Analyzing Section 16 of the Konggzi Jiayu: Confucius's Attitude Towards Supernormal Creatures and Incidents

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dc.contributor.advisor Schoneveld, Erin Qiao, Yiwen 2016-08-15T16:05:56Z 2016-08-15T16:05:56Z 2016
dc.description Yiwen Qiao was a Bryn Mawr College student.
dc.description.abstract This thesis is arguing that the book Kongzi Jiayu should be given more scholarly attention than it is currently getting. The Kongzi Jiayu has long been ignored because it was determined to be a forgery by the mainstream scholars in the Qing dynasty. Nevertheless, I consider that evidences these Qing scholars used to support their argument to be insufficient and believe we should take the Kongzi Jiayu more seriously. To prove this statement, the thesis focuses on Confucius’s attitude towards creatures and incidents of the supernormal sphere by analyzing Section 16 of the Kongzi Jiayu. If we only look into widely-accepted Confucian classics like The Analects and the Book of Rites, Confucius’s attitude towards supernormal creatures and incidents may seem ambiguous since he commends them in some records by saying they are virtuous and belittles them in other records by stating they are things he would not touch upon in his teaching. After a close reading of the sixteenth section of the Kongzi Jiayu, I present an argument that Confucius did not deny the existence of supernormal creatures and incidents, nor did he encourage people to form intimate relationships with them. Since the ultimate goal of Confucianism is to cultivate ethical and right people, Confucius rationalized and incorporated supernormal creatures and incidents into the system of rites when he had to talk about them. Thus, supernormal creatures and incidents, although found in multiple places inside classic texts attributed to Confucius, are only mentioned to the extent that they will not be distractions for people’s focus on self-appropriation and self-transgression.
dc.description.sponsorship Bi-College (Haverford and Bryn Mawr Colleges). Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures
dc.language.iso eng
dc.title Analyzing Section 16 of the Konggzi Jiayu: Confucius's Attitude Towards Supernormal Creatures and Incidents
dc.type Thesis
dc.rights.access Dark Archive

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