Environmental ethicists have frequently criticized ancient Greek philosophy as anti-environmental for a view of philosophy that is counterproductive to environmental ethics and a view of the world that puts nature at the disposal of people. This provocative collection of original essays reexamines the views of nature and ecology found in the thought of Plato, Aristotle, the Stoics, and Plotinus. Recognizing that these thinkers were not confronted with the environmental degradation that threatens contemporary philosophers, the contributors to this book find that (...) the Greeks nevertheless provide an excellent foundation for a sound theory of environmentalism. (shrink)
This essay examines two stories in Zhuangzi chapter 6 that provide detailsabout the formal, substantive, and applied features of friendship between daoadepts. Using a template of seven characteristics, dao adept friendship is thencompared with ren adept friendship, described in the Analects and theMencius. It is argued that dao living contains features of friendship that arecomparably robust. As unconventional as dao adept living may be, friendshipis not lacking but integral to such a life.
This paper explores the extent to which the Confucian concept of ren (humaneness) has application in ways that are comparable tocontemporary versions of environmental virtue ethics. I argue that the accounts of self-cultivation that are developed in major texts of the Confucian tradition have important direct implications for environmental thinking that even the Neo-Confucians do not seriously entertain.
I explore the features of universalist thinking in the work of Zhu X i, examining the following: the importance of li in Zhu Xi's cosmology and ethics; the course of moral development of a Confucian sage and the spheres of expanding identity and responsibility; the ideal of impartiality in achieving a composure of unity with the world; and the ideal of differentiated love as an expression of living in accord with li and xing. I conclude with some critical observations regarding (...) these major features of Zhu Xi's universalism, noting some hazards of such cross-cultural analysis, and acknowledging general problems facing the non-pluralistic perspective of his work. (shrink)
This paper examines the theistic interpretation of Plotinus’s conception of unity as presented in the work of John Rist. Three types of unity are identified: unity-with-difference, unity-without-difference, and unity-and-difference. I argue that the theistic interpretation encounters significant difficulties and cannot respond to the distinctions that Plotinus himself observes in his analysis of unity.