"Focus-field" as a pattern of human model formation in Taoist and Confucian culture Cover Image

"Фокус-поле" як патерн формування моделі людини у даосько-конфуціанській культурі
"Focus-field" as a pattern of human model formation in Taoist and Confucian culture

Author(s): Dmytro Malezhyk, Hleb Khomenko
Subject(s): Anthropology, Psychology, East Asian Philosophy
Published by: Національна академія керівних кадрів культури і мистецтв
Keywords: focus-field; personality; harmony; civilization; being; Daoism; Confucianism;

Summary/Abstract: The article deals with an interpretation of the pattern ‘focus-field’ as an original conception of anthropological model in Chinese religious and philosophical schoolings. The comparative analysis of theoretic and methodological features of anthropological pattern in the main Chinese philosophical schoolings has been given. After the example of original interpretation (focus-field) the human features in Chinese culture are grounded. The social determination of subject in Chinese society has been proved. Despite of collectivism ideology, China is famous by its despotism, where ordinary personality’s interests are dissolved among the society needs. The self in traditional Chinese culture are oriented on own society’s interests and traditions. It takes care of its own inner world more that of material means of human being. At the same time we can assert that such notions are stereotypic and they are affirmed by the works of Arabic thinker E.Said. He proves, that unilaterality of Western understanding of the antipole of culture is a result of the research within the framework ‘we – they’. Due to this understanding, the self-identification of Western world has been arisen. It also matters much in the establishment of Europe in psychological meaning. The formation of Ancient Chinese philosophy took place in the Golden Age (6–3 thousands years B.C.). In this period the main schoolings, such as Daoism and Confucianism were arisen. The ideas of macrocosm and microcosm and unity of human and world were reflected in them. In the center of Chinese philosophy is ch’i as a uninterrupted medium of dynamic vibrations, which determine the opposite forces – yin and yang. The harmony of the world in China depends on the interaction between the great triad Heaven – Human – Earth. Contrary from Indian philosophy, Chinese one is focused on the practical area and it is a base for collectivism as a state system. The main role in the formation of Daoism played Lao-tse’s works ‘The Book of Road and Bliss’ and ‘Zhuangzi’ by the author of the same name. The basic notion in Daoism philosophy is Dao, which means the road, universal nature of all things and it is identical with the western category of objective reality (being). Combining the meaning of Indian principle of ahimsa, Daoism claims the sympathy with every living being. The ideal of human in Daoism is ch’I, gin means naturalness. In China the main task for human was not release from the world but an adaptability to it by means of achieving of corporal immortality in way of Dao. Confucius, the founder of one of the principal Chinese philosophical schooling, supposed, that to be a human is to love all of people. Just reciprocal feeling and love for other persons distinguish the human from other living beings in the Celestial Empire. Following the rules of moral law of Dao, human has to achieve a level of junzi, i.e. noble man, or gentleman. Anthropological ideas of Confucius philosophy is based on the moral canons of human behaviour. Among the problems of human being the Master K'ung marked out zhongyong – the rule of the golden mean. Contrary from Lao-tse, Confucius pointed out not natural but social Cosmos, raised political and moral range of problems. He thought, that harmonization in society was the main factor of state development, which had been based on family relations. Famous American sinologist Roger T. Ames made an interpretation of anthropological pattern of the Celestial Empire after the example of its socio-political system. His pattern named ‘focus-field’ enabled to get to know a human image in China in detail, crashed previous stereotypes about the absence of subject in it. It was traditional for China to consider a structure of certain personality in the context of its political system. From the times of Sia dynasty, the Celestial Empire was divided into five hierarchical zones, or regions. This structure represented the level of taxes in favour of the center. This sun-form system of circle, which has detached by central focus, has spread with time in Chinese society. Positively appreciating of R.Ames’s pattern, researcher A.King proves convincing that in Chinese world all relationship are based on family principles. In his judgment, relations between leaders and directed persons are interpreted as relations between father and son, and relations between friends as relations between senior and junior brothers. Family as a cohesive similar ‘group’ is identified and focused in the center. According to scientist P.Arnheim, this focus determines the world order. Family, society, state and even tradition as an extended ‘group’ or ‘field’ remains as indefinite notions. This uncertainty of abstract connection focuses and becomes direct one during the representation of idea in certain father, civil activist, lord and historical model.

  • Issue Year: 2015
  • Issue No: 2
  • Page Range: 56-60
  • Page Count: 5
  • Language: Ukrainian