David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Oxford University Press (2003)
This book presents a systematic account of the role of the personal spiritual ideal of wu-wei--literally "no doing," but better rendered as "effortless action"--in early Chinese thought. Edward Slingerland's analysis shows that wu-wei represents the most general of a set of conceptual metaphors having to do with a state of effortless ease and unself-consciousness. This concept of effortlessness, he contends, serves as a common ideal for both Daoist and Confucian thinkers. He also argues that this concept contains within itself a conceptual tension that motivates the development of early Chinese thought: the so-called "paradox of wu-wei," or the question of how one can consciously "try not to try." Methodologically, this book represents a preliminary attempt to apply the contemporary theory of conceptual metaphor to the study of early Chinese thought. Although the focus is upon early China, both the subject matter and methodology have wider implications. The subject of wu-wei is relevant to anyone interested in later East Asian religious thought or in the so-called "virtue-ethics" tradition in the West. Moreover, the technique of conceptual metaphor analysis--along with the principle of "embodied realism" upon which it is based--provides an exciting new theoretical framework and methodological tool for the study of comparative thought, comparative religion, intellectual history, and even the humanities in general. Part of the purpose of this work is thus to help introduce scholars in the humanities and social sciences to this methodology, and provide an example of how it may be applied to a particular sub-field.
|Keywords||Philosophy, Chinese Nothing (Philosophy|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Buy the book||$34.99 used (69% off) $59.00 new (47% off) $104.50 direct from Amazon (5% off) Amazon page|
|Call number||B126.S645 2003|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Karyn L. Lai (2007). Ziran and Wuwei in the Daodejing : An Ethical Assessment. Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 6 (4):325-337.
Sungmoon Kim (2010). The Secret of Confucian Wuwei Statecraft: Mencius's Political Theory of Responsibility. Asian Philosophy 20 (1):27 – 42.
Wim De Reu (2010). How to Throw a Pot: The Centrality of the Potter's Wheel in the Zhuangzi. Asian Philosophy 20 (1):43 – 66.
Aaron Stalnaker (2010). Virtue as Mastery in Early Confucianism. Journal of Religious Ethics 38 (3):404-428.
Alex Feldt (2010). Governing Through the Dao: A Non-Anarchistic Interpretation of the Laozi. [REVIEW] Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 9 (3):323-337.
Similar books and articles
Rui Zhu (2002). Wu-Wei: Lao-Zi, Zhuang-Zi and the Aesthetic Judgement. Asian Philosophy 12 (1):53 – 63.
Chris Fraser (2008). Wc-Wtl, the Background, and Intentionality. In Bo Mou (ed.), Searle's Philosophy and Chinese Philosophy: Constructive Engagement. Brill. 27--63.
Robin R. Wang (2010). Ideal Womanhood in Chinese Thought and Culture. Philosophy Compass 5 (8):635-644.
Jane Geaney (2000). Chinese Cosmology and Recent Studies in Confucian Ethics: A Review Essay. [REVIEW] Journal of Religious Ethics 28 (3):449 - 470.
Edward G. Slingerland (2004). Conceptions of the Self in The. Philosophy East and West 54 (3).
Edward Slingerland (2008). The Problem of Moral Spontaneity in the Guodian Corpus. Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 7 (3):237-256.
Edward Slingerland (2011). Metaphor and Meaning in Early China. Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 10 (1):1-30.
Edward Gilman Slingerland (2004). Conceptions of the Self in the Zhuangzi: Conceptual Metaphor Analysis and Comparative Thought. Philosophy East and West 54 (3):322 - 342.
Edward Slingerland (2004). Conceptions of the Self in the Zhuangzi: Conceptual Metaphor Analysis and Comparative Thought. Philosophy East and West 54 (3):322-342.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads39 ( #41,786 of 1,096,606 )
Recent downloads (6 months)2 ( #158,594 of 1,096,606 )
How can I increase my downloads?