Author Archives: Justin Tiwald

Episode 3 of “This Is the Way”: Oneness

In the third episode of This Is the Way we explore the topic of oneness with our guest Philip J. Ivanhoe, a distinguished scholar and translator of East Asian philosophy. In part I, Justin gives a quick overview of Neo-Confucian philosophy and its connection to oneness. In part II, we talk with Ivanhoe about his book, Oneness: East Asian Conceptions of Virtue, Happiness, and How We Are All Connected. Some issues that we discuss include the following: the truth value of oneness (neither “strictly true” nor a groundless and pointless hallucination), the benefits of oneness (security, spontaneity, and metaphysical comfort), and the sense in which we are the minds of Heaven, Earth and the myriad things (Wang Yangming was right after all!).

Below you will find a more detailed accounting of topics, some specific passages and books or articles mentioned in the episode, and an opportunity to “weigh in” and share your views about the topic (or about the hosts’ wild claims about oneness or Chinese philosophy).

Your feedback is very welcome! Please leave a comment below, mail the hosts at ChinesePhilosophyPodcast@gmail.com, or follow them on X @ChinesePhilPod.

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Episode 2 of “This Is the Way”: Confucians on Shame

The second episode of This Is the Way is on shame as a moral emotion, as understood by classical Confucian philosophers (especially Confucius and Mencius, but also Xunzi). Our special guest is Jing Iris Hu (HU Jing 胡婧), author of “Shame, Vulnerability, and Change.” Key questions include the following: What are the Confucian arguments for having a sense of shame? To what extent can shame be autonomous or independent of social attitudes, and what mechanisms do the Confucian recommend for making it so independent? Do fully virtuous people need a sense of shame?
Below you will find a more detailed accounting of topics, some specific passages and books or articles mentioned in the episode, and an opportunity to “weigh in” and share your views about the topic (or about the hosts’ wild claims about the text). Continue reading →

Episode 1 of “This Is the Way”: Daoist Detachment

Richard Kim and Justin Tiwald are pleased to present a new podcast series on Chinese Philosophy, This Is the Way. The administrators of Warp, Weft, and Way have generously agreed to host supporting materials and discussions of specific podcast episodes.  Links to support pages for all published episodes can be found here.

The first episode is titled “Daoist Detachment.” In fact, it’s really just about the distinctive sort of detachment that seems to be at the heart of some (“core”) passages of the Zhuangzi. In this episode, Richard and Justin introduce themselves and talk about the motivation for the podcast series, the idea of “philosophical double-vision” that makes Zhuangzi-style detachment possible, and some worries about this sort of detachment. Below you will find a more detailed accounting of topics, some specific passages and books or articles mentioned in the episode, and an opportunity to “weigh in” and share your views about the topic (or about the hosts’ wild claims about the text).

Your feedback is very welcome! Please leave a comment below, mail the hosts at ChinesePhilosophyPodcast@gmail.com, or follow them on X @ChinesePhilPod.

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Chinese philosophy in the 2021-2022 Philosophical Gourmet Report

Once every few years, the Philosophical Gourmet Report publishes rankings of PhD programs in philosophy in the English-speaking world. It ranks programs “overall” and by areas of specialization. As one would hope for a report that aspires to be comprehensive and describe the current state of the field, one of those areas of specialization is Chinese philosophy.

You can find a general description of the methodology of the report here. As the member of the advisory board who took the lead in managing the Chinese philosophy area, and who wrote to the other assessors of Chinese philosophy to convene some joint deliberations about the process, I wanted to say a bit more about how we handled the Chinese philosophy section. Continue reading →

New Book: The Daodejing Commentary of Cheng Xuanying

Oxford University Press has published The Daodejing Commentary of Cheng Xuanying, a translation of Cheng Xuanying’s 成玄英 famous and philosophically rich commentary, which in turn shaped both Daoist and Buddhist discourse thereafter. The translation is expertly elucidated with ample notes and glosses by the translator, Friederike Assandri, a leading authority on Cheng Xuanying and the Twofold Mystery School.
This is now the third translation in the Oxford Chinese Thought book series, which is devoted to providing high-quality translations of important philosophical and religious texts, for scholars and for classroom use. A short description follows below the fold.

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New Book: Treatise on Awakening Mahāyāna Faith

Oxford University Press has published a second translation in the Oxford Chinese Thought series, which is the Treatise on Awakening Mahāyāna Faith, a translation of the Dasheng qixin lun 大乘起信論. We are very pleased to make widely available this scholarly translation of one of the most influential texts in East Asian Buddhism. This is the product of years of careful work by John Jorgensen, Dan Lusthaus, John Makeham, and Mark Strange. A short description follows below the fold.

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PPR Book Symposium on P.J. Ivanhoe’s Oneness

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research has published a book symposium on Philip J. Ivanhoe’s recent book, Oneness: East Asian Conceptions of Virtue, Happiness, and How We All Are Connected. It includes a précis to the book by Ivanhoe and responses from Julianne Chung, Owen Flanagan, and Graham Priest, as well as replies from Ivanhoe. The exchange is rich and elaborates on issues in Ivanhoe’s book in constructive and eye-opening ways. The articles are linked here. Be sure to click on the “more” button in the bottom, right-hand corner to get access to all of the essays.

New Book: The Wrong of Rudeness

Oxford University Press has now published Amy Olberding’s The Wrong of Rudeness: Learning Modern Civility from Ancient Chinese Philosophy.

A short description follows. I also recommend that people look at the brief blog entry that introduces some major themes and the remarkable first-person approach of the book to these issues. Anyone familiar with the look-to-oneself-first methodology and tenor of so much Confucian reflection will particularly appreciate this approach, and it makes the book all the more compelling reading as well.

Description:

In a time of fractious politics, being rude can feel wickedly gratifying, while being polite can feel simple-minded or willfully naïve. Do manners and civility even matter now? Is it worthwhile to make the effort to be polite? When rudeness has become routine and commonplace, why bother? When so much of public and social life with others is painful and bitterly acrimonious, why should anyone be polite? Continue reading →