经典 | “人文化成”啥意思你造吗？81个词语带你了解中华思想文化（第五波）
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发愤著书fāfèn-zhùshū indignation spurs one to writegreat works.
this term means sufferinginjustice in life can spur one to create great works. it originated from the “preface by thegrand historian to records of the historian.” aftersima qian, an official in the western han dynasty, suffered the unjustpunishment of castration, his indignation spurred him to write the great work,records of the historian. in the book he gave expression to his thoughts,feelings, and aspirations, which made the book a classic for later generations.the expression “indignation spurs one to write greatworks” was used to explain one of the motivations andreasons for creating masterpieces. it points to the fact that injusticesuffered by an author often turns out to be the source of inspiration for himto write a literary masterpiece. it later led to similar terms like “where there is injustice there will be an expression of indignation” and “frustration inspires poets to writefine poems.”
i am saddened that my frankremonstration with the king has brought false accusations on me and left me inexile. in anguish and indignation, i am writing these poems to express mystrong feelings. (qu yuan: collection of nine pieces)
most of the 300 poems in thebook of songs were written by sages who were in anguish and indignation. theywere depressed over what had prevented them from fulfilling their aspirations,so they composed poems about what had happened in the hope that futuregenerations would understand them. (sima qian: a letter of reply to ren an)
怀远以德huái yuǎn yǐ dé embrace distant states by meansof virtue
this expression refers topursuing conciliatory and benevolent policies and offering benefits to tribesand groups in remote areas. it was a political concept adopted by successivegovernments led mostly by the han people in their relations with other ethnicgroups, tribes in remote areas not yet directly under their rule, and foreignstates. it also represented an important component of the theory of winningover others by virtue. china was, as it is today, a multi-ethnic country. thehan-led government ruled over a large territory and believed that they had anadvanced culture. they usually took a conciliatory approach based on theconfucian concept of benevolence in dealing with the tribes and populations inremote regions, rather than conquering them by force, with the goal ofplacating them and winning their allegiance.
guan zhong said to the marquisof qi, “i have heard it said: win over the disaffected with respect andembrace distant states with virtue. with virtue and respect unchanging, thereis no one that will not be embraced.” (zuo’s commentary on the spring and autumn annals)
利用厚生lìyòng-hòushēng make full use of resources toenrich the people
the ancient chinese believedthat good governance allowed people to lead a life of plenty. the ruler shouldbe frugal, not extravagant or wasteful. he should make good use of the country’s materialresources, reduce the corvée and tax burdens on thepeople so that they could live peaceful, prosperous, and happy lives. thisbelief was one of the sources of advocation for the people’s livelihood and socialist thinking in modern china.
a ruler should manifest hisvirtue in good governance, and the goal of governance is to bring a good lifeto the people… the ruler should act in an upright and virtuous manner, and ensurethat the country’s resources are put to good use andthat the people live a prosperous life. these three goals complement oneanother. (the book of history)
民惟邦本mín wéi bāng běn people being the foundation ofthe state
this term means that the peopleare the essence of the state or the foundation upon which it stands. only whenpeople live and work in peace and contentment can the state be peaceful andstable. this saying, which first appeared in a pseudo-version of the classicalbook of history as an instruction by yu the great, can be traced to mencius’ statement: “the essence of a state is the people, next come the god of land andthe god of grain (which stand for state power), and the last the ruler,” and xunzi’s statement, “just as water can float a boat, so can water overturn it.” this idea gave rise to the “people first” thought advocated by confucianism.
our ancestor yu the greatwarned: (a ruler) must maintain a close relationship with the people; he mustnot regard them as insignificant. they are the foundation of a state, and astate can enjoy peace only when its foundation is firm. (the book of history)
人文化成rénwén-huàchéng ren wen hua cheng
the term is used to describeefforts to teach people essential ideals and principles of ren wen (人文) and guidethem to embrace goodness with the aim of building a harmonious –albeit hierarchical – social order, according to the level of development ofa civilization and the specifics of the society. ren wen refers to poetry,books, social norms, music, law, and other non-material components ofcivilization. hua (化) means to edify the populace; cheng (成)refers to the establishment or prosperity of rule by civil means (as opposed toforce). the concept emphasizes rule by civil means, and is another expressionof the chinese concept of “civilization.”
observing the movements of thesun, moon, and stars helps us learn about the change of seasons; studying thedevelopment of poetry, books, social norms, and music enables us to edify thepopulace so that the rule by civil means can prosper. (the book of changes)
顺天应人shùntiān-yìngrén follow the mandate of heaven andcomply with the wishes of the people
the ancient chinese believedthat virtuous men followed the will of heaven in establishing a politicalregime and becoming its sovereigns; hence their success came from the mandateof heaven. this thought is similar to the western notion of the divine right ofkings; but it also emphasizes the wishes and will of the people, orpeople-centered thinking. in ancient china, this phrase was often used inpraise of the founding of a new dynasty, and the implementation of major socialreforms to justify its legitimacy.
changes of yin and yang inheaven and earth give rise to the four seasons. following the mandate of heavenand complying with the wishes of the people, king tang and king wu overthrewold regimes and established the shang and zhou dynasties respectively. (thebook of changes)
为政以德wéi zhèng yǐ dé governance based on virtue
governance of a state should beguided by virtue. confucius expounded this philosophy –which his followers in later eras promoted – on the basis of theapproach advocated by the rulers in the western zhou dynasty that prized highmoral values and the virtue of being cautious in meting out punishment.governance based on virtue stands in contrast to rule by use of harshpunishment as a deterrent. it does not, however, exclude the use of punishment,but rather highlights the decisive role of virtue in governance, and regardsmoral edification both as the fundamental principle and the essential means forachieving good governance.
governance based on virtue islike the north star taking its place in the sky, while all the other starsrevolve around it. (the analects)
文以载道wén yǐ zài dào literature is the vehicle ofideas.
this term is a confucianstatement about the relationship between literature and ideas. wen (文) refers toliterary creations and works, while dao (道) refers tothe ideas conveyed by literary works. writers and philosophers in ancient chinaexplicated these ideas as confucian thought and ethics. han yu (leader of themid-tang-dynasty movement advocating the prose style of the qin and handynasties) and some others proposed that the purpose of writings should be inline with the classics of the ancient sages as well as promote them. zhoudunyi, a neo-confucian philosopher of the song dynasty, expounded the principleof literature serving as a vehicle of ideas. he concluded that literature waslike a vehicle while ideas were like goods loaded on it, and that literaturewas nothing but a means and a vehicle to convey confucian ideas. this theorywas valuable because it stressed the social role of literature and emphasizedthat writers should know what they were writing about to ensure that theirworks conveyed correct ideas. however, it underestimated the aesthetic value ofliterature and later met opposition from thinkers and writers who emphasizedthe value of literature per se.
writings are meant to conveyideas and ethics. when vehicles are not used, even if the wheels and shafts areexcessively decorated, it is simply a waste. fine language is only a means forwriting, whereas ethics are the essence of writings. (zhou dunyi: the gist ofconfucian thought)
协和万邦xiéhé-wànbāng coexistence of all in harmony
the term refers to the exerciseof benevolent government by virtuous and wise rulers in ancient china to winthe allegiance of all the vassals, so as to achieve an integration andacculturation of different ethnic groups and create a harmonious and unifiedalliance of tribes or a multi-ethnic state. harmonious coexistence of all is akey feature of the concept of social harmony in chinese culture and one of thecore values of the chinese nation.
(emperor yao) was able topromote moral values, so that amity prevailed in his clan. he then clarifiedthe hierarchical order of tribal officials. only when this was done could allvassal states, big and small, prosper in harmony, and the people becomefriendly with each other. (the book of history)
兴观群怨xīng guān qún yuàn stimulation, contemplation,sociability, and criticism
according to confucius, the bookof songs served these four purposes, which summarize the basic functions andvalues of literature. “stimulation” means that the appreciation ofliterary works arouses imagination, stimulates reflection on society and life,and inspires aspirations and interests. “contemplation” means that reading leads to understanding nature, society, life,and politics. “sociability”means that reading encourages discussion with others, and exchange of thoughtsand feelings. “criticism” meanslearning how to critically express oneself about state affairs and voice innerfeelings. these four functions are closely associated and involve theaesthetic, cognitive, and educational functions of literature. later scholarshave continued to make original contributions to the study of these themes.
the book of songs stimulates themind, inspires contemplation, enables one to understand society, exchangefeelings and thoughts with others, and express resentment. the book guides oneon how to support and wait on one’s parents at home and how to serve one’s sovereign in public life. one can also learn about birds, beasts,and plants from the book. (the analects)
if works created on the basis ofthe author’s understanding have the value of cognition, his understanding musthave been profound. if his feelings are based on recognition, his observationmust have been sharp. if certain resentment arises from discussions among agroup of people, it must be unforgettable. if a group of people have cometogether because they share certain resentment, they must be closely knit.(wang fuzhi: desultory remarks on poetry from ginger studio)