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Philosophy | Ritual and the Moral Life - Reclaiming the Tradition

Ritual and the Moral Life

Reclaiming the Tradition

Solomon, David, Fan, Ruiping, Lo, Ping-cheung (Eds.)

2012, VIII, 300 p.

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  • The first English language book discussing the Confucian philosophy of Confucian rituals
  • The first English language book dealing with comparative philosophy on eastern and western understandings of ritual
  • Deals with both Christian and Chinese understandings of ritual behavior and how Christian and Confucian rituals create their understandings of reality

In the twentieth century, in both China and the West, ritual became marginalized in the face of the growth of secularism and individualism. In China, Confucianism and its essentially ritualistic comportment to the world were vigorously suppressed during the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) under Mao Zedong. But de-ritualization already took place as a result of the Chinese Revolution of 1911 under Sun Yat-Sen. In the West, while the process of de-ritualization has been generally more gradual, it has been nonetheless drastic. In contrast to this situation, this volume investigates the crucial role ritual plays in constituting the human understanding of their place in the cosmos, the purpose of their lives, and imbues human existence with a more complete sense of meaningfulness.

 

This volume presents the work of philosophers from both China and the West as they reflect upon the constitutive role that ritual plays in human life. They reflect not only on ritual in general but also on specific Confucian and Christian appreciations of ritual.

 

This provocative volume is a beacon of warning to Western philosophers, who think they have graduated from the trappings of ritual, and a beacon of hope for Eastern thinkers, who wish to avoid cultural fragmentation. The Editors, both Eastern and Western, have together created a seamless work that not only introduces ritual, but advances an argument for the contribution that ritual makes to cultural renewal. This volume is a work of philosophical thinking about ritual doing, but challenges those who think to realize that the salvation of philosophical thinking rests in the particularity and contingency of ritual doing. Let us hope this volume is widely read, for it points to that which might renew the West.

- Jeffrey P. Bishop, Saint Louis University

- Jeffrey P. Bishop, Saint Louis University

Content Level » Research

Keywords » Christianity - Confucianism - Deritualization - Morality - Religious studies - Rites of passage - Ritual - Social reality - Tradition

Related subjects » Applied Ethics & Social Responsibility - Philosophy - Religious Studies

Table of contents 

I.          Ritual, Virtue, and the Pursuit of the Holy
 Ritual as the Creation of Social Reality                                 
Ana Iltis

            Ritual, Virtue, and Human Flourishing                                  H. Tristram Engelhardt, Jr.

            Ritual as Education Concerning Social Space and Time        Mark Cherry

            Why the West Spurns Medical Ritual Griffin Trotter

           

II.        Confucian Insights: Ritual as the Fabric of the Moral Community

            Ritual: Meaning and Recognition Tangjia Wang

            An Analysis of the Consciousness of Filial Piety
Through the Time Horizon  Xianglong Zhang

            Confucian Rites of Passage: A Comparative Analysis of Zhu Xi’s Family Rituals  Ping-cheung Lo

            Confucian Ritualization: How and Why  Ruiping Fan

 III.       Ritual and Tradition as Challenge to Modernity

            Cultural and Philosophical Resistance to Ritual in the Modern World  David Solomon          

In Favour of the Disadvantaged: Ritual in Xunzi and the Modern World  Daniel Bell

Ritual, Harmony and Peace and Order Jonathan Chan

IV        The Traditional Ritual Project

Ritual, Society and Community George Khushf

Christian and Confucian Cultural Renewal:

The Role of Ritual   Corinna Delkeskamp-Hayes

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