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Neo-Confucian Self-Cultivation - Hawaii Scholarship Online
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Neo-Confucian Self-Cultivation

Barry C. Keenan


Approximately fifteen hundred years after Confucius, his ideas reasserted themselves in the formulation of a sophisticated program of personal self-cultivation. Neo-Confucians argued that humans are endowed with empathy and goodness at birth, an assumption now confirmed by evolutionary biologists. By following the Great Learning—eight steps in the process of personal development—Neo-Confucians showed how this innate endowment could provide the foundation for living morally. Neo-Confucian students did not follow a single manual elaborating each step of the Great Learning; instead they were expo ... More

Keywords: Confucius, self-cultivation, Neo-Confucians, Great Learning

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2011 Print ISBN-13: 9780824834968
Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016 DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824834968.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Barry C. Keenan, author
Harvard University