TY - JOUR
T1 - INTERPRETATIONS OF THE DOCTRINE OF THE MEAN BY CHOSŎN CONFUCIAN SCHOLARS: TRADITIONAL/THEORETICAL AND REVISIONIST/PRACTICAL
AU - Gon , Kim You
JO - Academia Koreana
PY - 2014
DA - 2014/1/1
DO - 10.18399/acta.2014.17.2.006
KW - The Doctrine of the Mean
KW - Zhu Xi’s Neo-Confucianism
KW - Confucianism
KW - Study of Confucian classics
AB - A thorough understanding of the study of the Classics in the Chosŏn dynasty requires careful analysis of all of the classics. In this article, I will focus on one specific classical book, the Doctrine of the Mean. The interpretation of the Doctrine of the Mean can be divided into two main academic scholarly groups: one group deepened and developed the Neo-Confucian system of thought inherited from Zhu Xi, while the other emphasized the superior practical applications of the original Confucian philosophy and criticized the theory of Neo-Confucianism as too ideological without clear practical application. The former group emphasized two points. First, they expanded the theory of self-cultivation to include Neo-Confucianist theory concerning mind-nature. Second, proponents of this group eventually developed the Neo-Confucianist theory of mind-nature as one of the core topics in the seventeenth-century Horak debate. The second group scholars rejected Zhu Xi’s authority with respect to the Doctrine of the Mean, including, for example, his thirty-three-chapter system of dividing the previously undivided text of the book. Instead, this group criticized Zhu Xi’s addition of two chapters of his own to the Doctrine of the Mean, and used their own chapter system to divide the book, excluding Zhu Xi’s additions. They not only criticized Zhu Xi’s stance on metaphysical analysis, but also emphasized that the core of the Doctrine of the Mean should be to put the course of the Mean into practice in everyday life and human relations.