Xunzi and Mimamsa on the Source and Ground of Ritual: An Analogical Argument

Philosophy East and West 68 (3):737-761 (2018)
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Abstract

In recent years, there have been debates surrounding various aspects of the early Confucian philosopher Xunzi's view on ritual as a specific core element of his ethical thought.1 One of the main questions concerns the source of ritual. Is ritual something that humans discover in the world, or is it instead something they create? That is, does Xunzi offer a realist or a conventionalist view of ritual? The answer to this question is of great import for understanding the thought of Xunzi in general, as it will suggest certain readings of his views on language, human nature, and moral self-cultivation. Part of the problem, however, is that although Xunzi says quite a bit about the...

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Alexus McLeod
Indiana University, Bloomington

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