Monday, June 15, 2009

Mozi and universal love

I am an avid reader of James McGrath's blog and I want to contribute this thought to his recent post on compassion, which I will copy out here and then link to. Read the comments there and see how this fits in.

Over the last year I have spent a bit of time reading various volumes which compare Chinese philosophy and Christianity. I'll give my little reading list later. For today, here is something on Mozi (fifth century BC) which sums up my response,
    The doctrine of univeral love is the most famous and original of Mozi's contributions to Chinese thought. We have already noted the negative side in his condemnations of offensive warfare, condemnations which could just as well have been made by thinkers of the Confucian or Daoist schools. But Mozi alone of all Chinese thinkers was not content merely to condemn acts that are harmful to others. He went a step further to proclaim that men should actually love the members of other families and states in the same way that they love the members of their own family and state, for all are equally the creatures and people of God.

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