Warp, Weft, and Way

Chinese and Comparative Philosophy 中國哲學與比較哲學

Harvey Lederman – Columbia Society for Comparative Philosophy Lecture: “Weakness of the Will and Liangzhi in Wang Yangming”, Mar.18 @ 5:30pm

THE COLUMBIA SOCIETY FOR COMPARATIVE PHILOSOPHY

Welcomes: HARVEY LEDERMAN (New York University)
With responses from: STEVE ANGLE (Wesleyan University)

Please join us at Columbia University’s Religion Department on FRIDAY, MARCH 18th at 5:30PM for his lecture entitled:

Weakness of the Will and Liangzhi in Wang Yangming”

This paper starts from Wang Shouren’s (王守仁, Yangming 陽明 1472-1529) doctrines concerning weakness of the will, with the aim of developing an interpretation of his theory of “intuition” (l ́ıangzh ̄ı 良知). Wang famously insisted on the “unity of knowledge and action” (知行合一). “Action” is understood in this claim as the subject’s affect; to act appropriately is to have the ethically appropriate affective response. In claiming that knowledge and action are one Wang claims that one form of weakness of the will is impossible: if one knows piety (for example), one is guaranteed to have a pious affective response, that is, to act piously. Wang held that humans have an innate capacity to respond to stimuli with ethically appropriate affect, and that the explanation of this capacity somehow involves the faculty of “intuition” (良知), the faculty by which one obtains moral knowledge. But how does intuition yield moral knowledge? And how does this knowledge guarantee that one will have the affect appropriate to the circumstances? Continue reading “Harvey Lederman – Columbia Society for Comparative Philosophy Lecture: “Weakness of the Will and Liangzhi in Wang Yangming”, Mar.18 @ 5:30pm”

March 4, 2016 Posted by | Comparative philosophy, Lecture, Wang Yangming | no comments