Authenticity, Sincerity and Spontaneity

Authenticity, Sincerity and Spontaneity: The Mutual Implication of Nature and Religion in China and the WestJames Miller. 2013. “Authenticity, Sincerity and Spontaneity: The Mutual Implication of Nature and Religion in China and the West.” Method and Theory in the Study of Religion 25: 283-307

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.

Keywords

nature, religion, authenticity, daoism, confucianism, ethics

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