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Acta Koreana is published semi-annually on June 15 and December 15 by Academia Koreana, Keimyung University.
 
 
Title NAMDANG’S THEORY ON THE NATURES OF HUMANS AND NON-HUMAN LIVING BEINGS AND HIS DEVELOPMENT OF ZHU XI’S THEORIES
 
Author
XING LIJU and LIN XI
Volume Vol. 19 No. 2
Pages pp. 217~237 (all 21 pages)
Publication Date DECEMBER, 2016
Keyword Namdang, Zhu Xi, li-qi theory, Thesis of Trichotomous Nature, natures of humans and non-human living beings
Abstract This article examines a thesis by Namdang, a Confucian scholar in Chosŏn Korea, on the natures of humans and non-human living beings, using Zhu Xi’s li (理) - qi (氣) theory. Regarding the sameness or difference between li and qi, Zhu Xi formulated different opinions in his early and later life and was also at times inconsistent in his works of a certain period. To a certain extent, Zhu Xi’s thoughts lacked coherence, which led to subsequent debates. In seeking to develop Zhu Xi’s li-qi theory, Namdang put forward his original thesis of Trichotomous Nature, which significantly enriched Zhu Xi’s ideas. The “nature transcending the appearance of things” (K. ch’ohyŏnggi 超形氣) refers to a pure xing (K. sŏng 性; nature), concerned with only li without considering the influence of qi from the perspective of a unitary source (K. irwŏn 一原; one source). At this stage, everything shares the same li and xing. The “nature originated from temperament” (K. in’gijil 因氣質) demonstrates the shared nature for the same species as well as the difference in nature across species, thus being an endowment-dependent li. At this stage, for the same species, they share the same li, qi, and xing, while for varying species, there is a difference in li, qi, and xing. The “nature mixed with temperament” (K. chapkijil 雜氣質) considers the xing of pure qizhi (K. kijil氣質; physical temperament) in which all creatures differ. It is thus a concept that demonstrates the particularity in all things, with varying differences in li, qi, and xing.
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