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Authenticity, Sincerity and Spontaneity: The Mutual Implication of Nature and Religion in China and the West

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image of Method & Theory in the Study of Religion

Abstract Fundamental approaches to ethics and morality in both China and the West are bound up not only with conceptions of religion and ultimate truth, but also with conceptions of nature. One dominant theme in the West is to see nature in terms of an original goodness that precedes human manipulation. This theme is bound up with Biblical views of divine creation by a divine lawmaker. In contrast to this view, Chinese conceptions of sincerity (cheng) and spontaneity (ziran) mitigate against such an abstract conception of the original goodness or authenticity of nature.

Affiliations: 1: School of Religion, Queen’s University Canada K7L3N6 james.miller@queensu.ca

10.1163/15700682-12341259
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/content/journals/10.1163/15700682-12341259
2013-01-01
2016-12-09

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