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Why did Mozi's philosophy die out in China?

Why did Mozi's philosophy die out in China?

Today in my Social Studies class we learned about Mozi by reading the material he wrote in translation. According to my teacher, despite enormous initial influence Mohism, the philosophy developed by Mozi died out. Upon research, I determined that Mohism's influence was extinguished during the Han dynasty, but I couldn't determine a satisfactory reason why this was so. So my question is, why did Mohism's influence cease by the Han dynasty?

I think there are these reasons:

  • Around the time of its decline, Chinese philosophy was quasi-religious, and exclusionary. That is, Mohism was actively suppressed by regimes that adopted other philosophies, such as Confucianism.
  • Some of its doctrines became obsolete
  • Some of its doctrines were absorbed by the other philosophies


Mohism arose during the hundred schools of thought, a period of time when China was fractured with no strong central authority, so many different philosophies/schools flourished and competed against each other. This came to an end when Qin unified China, and Qin adopted Legalism, to the strong exclusion of other schools. The most prominent example of this violent exclusion was the burning of books and burying of scholars (焚書坑儒), which wiped out most of the schools and would have done the same to Confucianism if Confucius's works weren't later found hidden inside the walls of his residence.

Later when the Han dynasty adopted Confucianism as the state philosophy, it too suppressed other philosophies, and although it was by far less bloody than Qin's efforts, it was still marked by some palace intrigue. What was unique to Mohism however was how strongly its doctrines were in conflict with Confucianism; its focus on impartial meritocracy directly contradicted the Confucian concept of filial piety, where loyalty to one's family and elders was paramount. Another point of conflict was over the role of rituals, which were considered useless by Mozi but of strong importance by Confucius.


Mohism valued things like logic, mathematics and pacifism. The first two in particular meant that the best siege engineers were Mohists. This meant they were highly sought after during the Warring States period.

This all changed after China was unified; what warfare was left was mostly limited to suppressing bandits and defending from nomads, none of which required engineering expertise.


Perhaps the greatest reason why Mohism died out (and other surviving schools, like Taoism didn't) is that its best doctrines were absorbed by the prevailing philosophies and what was left was a pile of unattractive theories. Let's look at its ten doctrines in detail:

“Elevating the Worthy” and “Conforming Upward”

Mostly absorbed between Han and Tang dynasties, although with a strong Confucian twist. A meritocratic imperial examination system (科舉) was set up, although a huge portion was devoted to the study of Confucian classics. A quasi-meritocratic system of civil recruitment (孝廉) was adopted by Han, where (in theory) this avoided nepotism, but candidates were judged on filial piety and virtue (incorruptibility) instead of talent and ability. Made more meritocratic by the Tang dynasty when this system was abolished in favour of the imperial examination system, arguably the most meritocratic in the world in its time.

“Inclusive Care” and “Rejecting Aggression”

Although the impartiality and pacifist aspects weren't absorbed, one key element of these doctrines is basically the Golden Rule, which is shared by virtually every major human philosophy.

“Thrift in Utilization” and “Thrift in Funerals”

Thrift (廉) is a strong Confucian virtue, although the two philosophies differ on rituals (such as funerals). During the Han dynasty, officials were required to resign their posts and mourn for three years upon the death of a parent or grandparent. In theory, reducing the expense of these rituals would be hugely attractive, but it also became a useful political tool to slander officials who infringed on the mourning ritual, notably Bai Juyi who was exiled partly due to writing poems during the mourning period for his mother. As we all know, once something becomes a political tool, it can be exceedingly hard to get rid of.

“Heaven's Intention” and “Elucidating Ghosts”

This focus on mysticism and religiosity notably does not prescribe any specific targets of worship, and hence is compatible with many other philosophies. Arguably it conflicts with the areligious Legalism, but then again it was not a state philosophy by the time of Han.

“Rejecting Music” and “Rejecting Fatalism”

Strong conflict with Confucianism, but the rejection of music and other "idle" activities made it unattractive to the kind of rich patrons that could have greatly promoted Mohism.


Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article.

Mohism, also spelled Moism, school of Chinese philosophy founded by Mozi (q.v.) in the 5th century bce . This philosophy challenged the dominant Confucian ideology until about the 3rd century bce . Mozi taught the necessity for individual piety and submission to the will of heaven, or Shangdi (the Lord on High), and deplored the Confucian emphasis on rites and ceremonies as a waste of government funds.

In contrast to the Confucian moral ideal of ren (“humanity” or “benevolence”), which differentiated the special love for one’s parents and family from the general love shown to fellow men, the Mohists advocated the practice of love without distinctions (jianai). The Confucians, in particular Mencius, bitterly attacked the Mohist concept of undifferentiated love because it challenged the basis of Confucian family harmony, which was in fact and theory the foundation for the social harmony of the Confucian state.

This article was most recently revised and updated by Matt Stefon, Assistant Editor.


Rays of light travel in straight lines and change when they are reflected and partly absorbed by an object, retaining information about the color and brightness of the surface of that object. Lighted objects reflect rays of light in all directions. A small enough opening in a barrier admits only the rays that travel directly from different points in the scene on the other side, and these rays form an image of that scene where they reach a surface opposite from the opening. [3]

The human eye (and those of animals such as birds, fish, reptiles etc.) works much like a camera obscura with an opening (pupil), a convex lens, and a surface where the image is formed (retina). Some cameras obscuras use a concave mirror for a focusing effect similar to a convex lens. [3]

A camera obscura consists of a box, tent, or room with a small hole in one side or the top. Light from an external scene passes through the hole and strikes a surface inside, where the scene is reproduced, inverted (upside-down) and reversed (left to right), but with color and perspective preserved. [4]

To produce a reasonably clear projected image, the aperture is typically smaller than 1/100th the distance to the screen. As the pinhole is made smaller, the image gets sharper, but dimmer. With a too small pinhole, however, the sharpness worsens, due to diffraction. Optimum sharpness is attained with an aperture diameter approximately equal to the geometric mean of the wavelength of light and the distance to the screen. [5]

In practice, camera obscuras use a lens rather than a pinhole because it allows a larger aperture, giving a usable brightness while maintaining focus. [3]

If the image is caught on a translucent screen, it can be viewed from the back so that it is no longer reversed (but still upside-down). Using mirrors, it is possible to project a right-side-up image. The projection can also be displayed on a horizontal surface (e.g., a table). The 18th-century overhead version in tents used mirrors inside a kind of periscope on the top of the tent. [3]

The box-type camera obscura often has an angled mirror projecting an upright image onto tracing paper placed on its glass top. Although the image is viewed from the back, it is reversed by the mirror. [6]

Prehistory to 500 BCE: Possible inspiration for prehistoric art and possible use in religious ceremonies, gnomons Edit

There are theories that occurrences of camera obscura effects (through tiny holes in tents or in screens of animal hide) inspired paleolithic cave paintings. Distortions in the shapes of animals in many paleolithic cave artworks might be inspired by distortions seen when the surface on which an image was projected was not straight or not in the right angle. [7] It is also suggested that camera obscura projections could have played a role in Neolithic structures. [8] [9]

Perforated gnomons projecting a pinhole image of the sun were described in the Chinese Zhoubi Suanjing writings (1046 BCE–256 BCE with material added until circa 220 CE). [10] The location of the bright circle can be measured to tell the time of day and year. In Arab and European cultures its invention was much later attributed to Egyptian astronomer and mathematician Ibn Yunus around 1000 CE. [11]

Some ancient sightings of gods and spirits, especially in temple worship, are thought to possibly have been conjured up by means of camera obscura projections. [12] [13] [14]

500 BCE to 500 CE: Earliest written observations Edit

The earliest known written record of the camera obscura is found in the Chinese text called Mozi, dated to the 4th century BCE, traditionally ascribed to and named for Mozi (circa 470 BCE-circa 391 BCE), a Han Chinese philosopher and the founder of Mohist School of Logic. These writings explain how the image in a "collecting-point" or "treasure house" [note 1] is inverted by an intersecting point (pinhole) that collects the (rays of) light. Light coming from the foot of an illuminated person were partly hidden below (i.e., strike below the pinhole) and partly formed the top of the image. Rays from the head were partly hidden above (i.e., strike above the pinhole) and partly formed the lower part of the image. This is a remarkably early correct description of the camera obscura no other known examples are dated before the 11th century. [14]

The Greek philosopher Aristotle (384–322 BCE), or possibly a follower of his ideas, touched upon the subject in the work Problems – Book XV, asking:

Why is it that when the sun passes through quadri-laterals, as for instance in wickerwork, it does not produce a figure rectangular in shape but circular?

"Why is it that an eclipse of the sun, if one looks at it through a sieve or through leaves, such as a plane-tree or other broadleaved tree, or if one joins the fingers of one hand over the fingers of the other, the rays are crescent-shaped where they reach the earth? Is it for the same reason as that when light shines through a rectangular peep-hole, it appears circular in the form of a cone?"

Many philosophers and scientists of the Western world pondered this question before it was accepted that the circular and crescent-shapes described in the "problem" were pinhole image projections of the sun. Although a projected image has the shape of the aperture when the light source, aperture and projection plane are close together, the projected image has the shape of the light source when they are farther apart.

In his book Optics (circa 300 BCE, surviving in later manuscripts from around 1000 CE), Euclid proposed mathematical descriptions of vision with "lines drawn directly from the eye pass through a space of great extent" and "the form of the space included in our vision is a cone, with its apex in the eye and its base at the limits of our vision." [15] Later versions of the text, like Ignazio Danti's 1573 annotated translation, would add a description of the camera obscura principle to demonstrate Euclid's ideas. [16]

500 to 1000: Earliest experiments, study of light Edit

In the 6th century, the Byzantine-Greek mathematician and architect Anthemius of Tralles (most famous as a co-architect of the Hagia Sophia) experimented with effects related to the camera obscura. [17] Anthemius had a sophisticated understanding of the involved optics, as demonstrated by a light-ray diagram he constructed in 555 CE. [18]

In the 10th century Yu Chao-Lung supposedly projected images of pagoda models through a small hole onto a screen to study directions and divergence of rays of light. [19]

1000 to 1400: Optical and astronomical tool, entertainment Edit

Arab physicist Ibn al-Haytham (known in the West by the Latinised Alhazen) (965–1039) extensively studied the camera obscura phenomenon in the early 11th century.

In his treatise "On the shape of the eclipse" he provided the first experimental and mathematical analysis of the phenomenon. [21] [22] He must have understood the relationship between the focal point and the pinhole. [23]

In his Book of Optics (circa 1027), Ibn al-Haytham explained that rays of light travel in straight lines and are distinguished by the body that reflected the rays, writing: [24]

Evidence that light and color do not mingle in air or (other) transparent bodies is (found in) the fact that, when several candles are at various distinct locations in the same area, and when they all face a window that opens into a dark recess, and when there is a white wall or (other white) opaque body in the dark recess facing that window, the (individual) lights of those candles appear individually upon that body or wall according to the number of those candles and each of those lights (spots of light) appears directly opposite one (particular) candle along a straight line passing through that window. Moreover, if one candle is shielded, only the light opposite that candle is extinguished, but if the shielding object is lifted, the light will return.

He described a "dark chamber", and experimented with light passing through small pinholes, using three adjacent candles and seeing the effects on the wall after placing a cutout between the candles and the wall. [25] [26]

The image of the sun at the time of the eclipse, unless it is total, demonstrates that when its light passes through a narrow, round hole and is cast on a plane opposite to the hole it takes on the form of a moon-sickle. The image of the sun shows this peculiarity only when the hole is very small. When the hole is enlarged, the picture changes, and the change increases with the added width. When the aperture is very wide, the sickle-form image will disappear, and the light will appear round when the hole is round, square if the hole is square, and if the shape of the opening is irregular, the light on the wall will take on this shape, provided that the hole is wide and the plane on which it is thrown is parallel to it.

Ibn al-Haytham also analyzed the rays of sunlight and concluded that they made a conic shape where they met at the hole, forming another conic shape reverse to the first one from the hole to the opposite wall in the dark room. Latin translations of his writings on optics were very influential in Europe from about 1200 onward. Among those he inspired were Witelo, John Peckham, Roger Bacon, Leonardo Da Vinci, René Descartes and Johannes Kepler. [27]

In his 1088 book, Dream Pool Essays, the Song Dynasty Chinese scientist Shen Kuo (1031–1095) compared the focal point of a concave burning-mirror and the "collecting" hole of camera obscura phenomena to an oar in a rowlock to explain how the images were inverted:

"When a bird flies in the air, its shadow moves along the ground in the same direction. But if its image is collected (shu)(like a belt being tightened) through a small hole in a window, then the shadow moves in the direction opposite of that of the bird.[. ] This is the same principle as the burning-mirror. Such a mirror has a concave surface, and reflects a finger to give an upright image if the object is very near, but if the finger moves farther and farther away it reaches a point where the image disappears and after that the image appears inverted. Thus the point where the image disappears is like the pinhole of the window. So also the oar is fixed at the rowlock somewhere at its middle part, constituting, when it is moved, a sort of 'waist' and the handle of the oar is always in the position inverse to the end (which is in the water)."

Shen Kuo also responded to a statement of Duan Chengshi in Miscellaneous Morsels from Youyang written in about 840 that the inverted image of a Chinese pagoda tower beside a seashore, was inverted because it was reflected by the sea: "This is nonsense. It is a normal principle that the image is inverted after passing through the small hole." [14]

English statesman and scholastic philosopher Robert Grosseteste (c. 1175 – 9 October 1253) was one of the earliest Europeans who commented on the camera obscura. [28]

English philosopher and Franciscan friar Roger Bacon (c. 1219/20 – c. 1292) falsely stated in his De Multiplicatione Specerium (1267) that an image projected through a square aperture was round because light would travel in spherical waves and therefore assumed its natural shape after passing through a hole. He is also credited with a manuscript that advised to study solar eclipses safely by observing the rays passing through some round hole and studying the spot of light they form on a surface. [29]

A picture of a three-tiered camera obscura (see illustration) has been attributed to Bacon, [30] but the source for this attribution is not given. A very similar picture is found in Athanasius Kircher's Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae (1646). [31]

Polish friar, theologian, physicist, mathematician and natural philosopher Erazmus Ciołek Witelo (also known as Vitello Thuringopolonis and by many different spellings of the name "Witelo") wrote about the camera obscura in his very influential treatise Perspectiva (circa 1270–1278), which was largely based on Ibn al-Haytham's work.

English archbishop and scholar John Peckham (circa 1230 – 1292) wrote about the camera obscura in his Tractatus de Perspectiva (circa 1269–1277) and Perspectiva communis (circa 1277–79), falsely arguing that light gradually forms the circular shape after passing through the aperture. [32] His writings were influenced by Roger Bacon.

At the end of the 13th century, Arnaldus de Villa Nova is credited with using a camera obscura to project live performances for entertainment. [33] [34]

French astronomer Guillaume de Saint-Cloud suggested in his 1292 work Almanach Planetarum that the eccentricity of the sun could be determined with the camera obscura from the inverse proportion between the distances and the apparent solar diameters at apogee and perigee. [35]

Kamāl al-Dīn al-Fārisī (1267–1319) described in his 1309 work Kitab Tanqih al-Manazir (The Revision of the Optics) how he experimented with a glass sphere filled with water in a camera obscura with a controlled aperture and found that the colors of the rainbow are phenomena of the decomposition of light. [36] [37]

French Jewish philosopher, mathematician, physicist and astronomer/astrologer Levi ben Gershon (1288–1344) (also known as Gersonides or Leo de Balneolis) made several astronomical observations using a camera obscura with a Jacob's staff, describing methods to measure the angular diameters of the sun, the moon and the bright planets Venus and Jupiter. He determined the eccentricity of the sun based on his observations of the summer and winter solstices in 1334. Levi also noted how the size of the aperture determined the size of the projected image. He wrote about his findings in Hebrew in his treatise Sefer Milhamot Ha-Shem (The Wars of the Lord) Book V Chapters 5 and 9. [38]

1450 to 1600: Depiction, lenses, drawing aid, mirrors Edit

Italian polymath Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519), familiar with the work of Alhazen in Latin translation, [40] and after an extensive study of optics and human vision, wrote the oldest known clear description of the camera obscura in mirror writing in a notebook in 1502, later published in the collection Codex Atlanticus (translated from Latin):

If the facade of a building, or a place, or a landscape is illuminated by the sun and a small hole is drilled in the wall of a room in a building facing this, which is not directly lighted by the sun, then all objects illuminated by the sun will send their images through this aperture and will appear, upside down, on the wall facing the hole. You will catch these pictures on a piece of white paper, which placed vertically in the room not far from that opening, and you will see all the above-mentioned objects on this paper in their natural shapes or colors, but they will appear smaller and upside down, on account of crossing of the rays at that aperture. If these pictures originate from a place which is illuminated by the sun, they will appear colored on the paper exactly as they are. The paper should be very thin and must be viewed from the back. [41]

These descriptions, however, would remain unknown until Venturi deciphered and published them in 1797. [42]

Da Vinci was clearly very interested in the camera obscura: over the years he drew circa 270 diagrams of the camera obscura in his notebooks . He systematically experimented with various shapes and sizes of apertures and with multiple apertures (1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 16, 24, 28 and 32). He compared the working of the eye to that of the camera obscura and seemed especially interested in its capability of demonstrating basic principles of optics: the inversion of images through the pinhole or pupil, the non-interference of images and the fact that images are "all in all and all in every part". [43]

The oldest known published drawing of a camera obscura is found in Dutch physician, mathematician and instrument maker Gemma Frisius’ 1545 book De Radio Astronomica et Geometrica, in which he described and illustrated how he used the camera obscura to study the solar eclipse of 24 January 1544 [42]

Italian polymath Gerolamo Cardano described using a glass disc – probably a biconvex lens – in a camera obscura in his 1550 book De subtilitate, vol. I, Libri IV. He suggested to use it to view "what takes place in the street when the sun shines" and advised to use a very white sheet of paper as a projection screen so the colours wouldn't be dull. [44]

Sicilian mathematician and astronomer Francesco Maurolico (1494–1575) answered Aristotle's problem how sunlight that shines through rectangular holes can form round spots of light or crescent-shaped spots during an eclipse in his treatise Photismi de lumine et umbra (1521–1554). However this wasn't published before 1611, [45] after Johannes Kepler had published similar findings of his own.

Italian polymath Giambattista della Porta described the camera obscura, which he called "obscurum cubiculum", in the 1558 first edition of his book series Magia Naturalis. He suggested to use a convex lens to project the image onto paper and to use this as a drawing aid. Della Porta compared the human eye to the camera obscura: "For the image is let into the eye through the eyeball just as here through the window". The popularity of Della Porta's books helped spread knowledge of the camera obscura. [46] [47]

In his 1567 work La Pratica della Perspettiva Venetian nobleman Daniele Barbaro (1513-1570) described using a camera obscura with a biconvex lens as a drawing aid and points out that the picture is more vivid if the lens is covered as much as to leave a circumference in the middle. [44]

In his influential and meticulously annotated Latin edition of the works of Ibn al-Haytham and Witelo, Opticae thesauru (1572), German mathematician Friedrich Risner proposed a portable camera obscura drawing aid a lightweight wooden hut with lenses in each of its four walls that would project images of the surroundings on a paper cube in the middle. The construction could be carried on two wooden poles. [48] A very similar setup was illustrated in 1645 in Athanasius Kircher's influential book Ars Magna Lucis Et Umbrae. [49]

Around 1575 Italian Dominican priest, mathematician, astronomer, and cosmographer Ignazio Danti designed a camera obscura gnomon and a meridian line for the Basilica of Santa Maria Novella, Florence and he later had a massive gnomon built in the San Petronio Basilica in Bologna. The gnomon was used to study the movements of the sun during the year and helped in determining the new Gregorian calendar for which Danti took place in the commission appointed by Pope Gregorius XIII and instituted in 1582. [50]

In his 1585 book Diversarum Speculationum Mathematicarum [51] Venetian mathematician Giambattista Benedetti proposed to use a mirror in a 45-degree angle to project the image upright. This leaves the image reversed, but would become common practice in later camera obscura boxes. [44]

Giambattista della Porta added a "lenticular crystal" or biconvex lens to the camera obscura description in the 1589 second edition of Magia Naturalis. He also described use of the camera obscura to project hunting scenes, banquets, battles, plays, or anything desired on white sheets. Trees, forests, rivers, mountains "that are really so, or made by Art, of Wood, or some other matter" could be arranged on a plain in the sunshine on the other side of the camera obscura wall. Little children and animals (for instance handmade deer, wild boars, rhinos, elephants, and lions) could perform in this set. "Then, by degrees, they must appear, as coming out of their dens, upon the Plain: The Hunter he must come with his hunting Pole, Nets, Arrows, and other necessaries, that may represent hunting: Let there be Horns, Cornets, Trumpets sounded: those that are in the Chamber shall see Trees, Animals, Hunters Faces, and all the rest so plainly, that they cannot tell whether they be true or delusions: Swords drawn will glister in at the hole, that they will make people almost afraid." Della Porta claimed to have shown such spectacles often to his friends. They admired it very much and could hardly be convinced by Della Porta's explanations that what they had seen was really an optical trick. [46] [52] [53]

1600 to 1650: Name coined, camera obscura telescopy, portable drawing aid in tents and boxes Edit

The earliest use of the term "camera obscura" is found in the 1604 book Ad Vitellionem Paralipomena by German mathematician, astronomer, and astrologer Johannes Kepler. [54] Kepler discovered the working of the camera obscura by recreating its principle with a book replacing a shining body and sending threads from its edges through a many-cornered aperture in a table onto the floor where the threads recreated the shape of the book. He also realized that images are "painted" inverted and reversed on the retina of the eye and figured that this is somehow corrected by the brain. [55] In 1607, Kepler studied the sun in his camera obscura and noticed a sunspot, but he thought it was Mercury transiting the sun. [56] In his 1611 book Dioptrice, Kepler described how the projected image of the camera obscura can be improved and reverted with a lens. It is believed he later used a telescope with three lenses to revert the image in the camera obscura. [44]

In 1611, Frisian/German astronomers David and Johannes Fabricius (father and son) studied sunspots with a camera obscura, after realizing looking at the sun directly with the telescope could damage their eyes. [56] They are thought to have combined the telescope and the camera obscura into camera obscura telescopy. [56] [57]

In 1612, Italian mathematician Benedetto Castelli wrote to his mentor, the Italian astronomer, physicist, engineer, philosopher, and mathematician Galileo Galilei about projecting images of the sun through a telescope (invented in 1608) to study the recently discovered sunspots. Galilei wrote about Castelli's technique to the German Jesuit priest, physicist, and astronomer Christoph Scheiner. [58]

From 1612 to at least 1630, Christoph Scheiner would keep on studying sunspots and constructing new telescopic solar-projection systems. He called these "Heliotropii Telioscopici", later contracted to helioscope. [58] For his helioscope studies, Scheiner built a box around the viewing/projecting end of the telescope, which can be seen as the oldest known version of a box-type camera obscura. Scheiner also made a portable camera obscura. [59]

In his 1613 book Opticorum Libri Sex [60] Belgian Jesuit mathematician, physicist, and architect François d'Aguilon described how some charlatans cheated people out of their money by claiming they knew necromancy and would raise the specters of the devil from hell to show them to the audience inside a dark room. The image of an assistant with a devil's mask was projected through a lens into the dark room, scaring the uneducated spectators. [29]

By 1620 Kepler used a portable camera obscura tent with a modified telescope to draw landscapes. It could be turned around to capture the surroundings in parts. [61]

Dutch inventor Cornelis Drebbel is thought to have constructed a box-type camera obscura which corrected the inversion of the projected image. In 1622, he sold one to the Dutch poet, composer, and diplomat Constantijn Huygens who used it to paint and recommended it to his artist friends. [48] Huygens wrote to his parents (translated from French):

I have at home Drebbel's other instrument, which certainly makes admirable effects in painting from reflection in a dark room it is not possible for me to reveal the beauty to you in words all painting is dead by comparison, for here is life itself or something more elevated if one could articulate it. The figure and the contour and the movements come together naturally therein and in a grandly pleasing fashion. [62]

German Orientalist, mathematician, inventor, poet, and librarian Daniel Schwenter wrote in his 1636 book Deliciae Physico-Mathematicae about an instrument that a man from Pappenheim had shown him, which enabled movement of a lens to project more from a scene through the camera obscura. It consisted of a ball as big as a fist, through which a hole (AB) was made with a lens attached on one side (B). This ball was placed inside two-halves of part of a hollow ball that were then glued together (CD), in which it could be turned around. This device was attached to a wall of the camera obscura (EF). [63] This universal joint mechanism was later called a scioptric ball.

In his 1637 book Dioptrique French philosopher, mathematician and scientist René Descartes suggested placing an eye of a recently dead man (or if a dead man was unavailable, the eye of an ox) into an opening in a darkened room and scraping away the flesh at the back until one could see the inverted image formed on the retina. [64]

Italian Jesuit philosopher, mathematician, and astronomer Mario Bettini wrote about making a camera obscura with twelve holes in his Apiaria universae philosophiae mathematicae (1642). When a foot soldier would stand in front of the camera, a twelve-person army of soldiers making the same movements would be projected.

French mathematician, Minim friar, and painter of anamorphic art Jean-François Nicéron (1613–1646) wrote about the camera obscura with convex lenses. He explained how the camera obscura could be used by painters to achieve perfect perspective in their work. He also complained how charlatans abused the camera obscura to fool witless spectators and make them believe that the projections were magic or occult science. These writings were published in a posthumous version of La Perspective Curieuse (1652). [65]

1650 to 1800: Introduction of the magic lantern, popular portable box-type drawing aid, painting aid Edit

The use of the camera obscura to project special shows to entertain an audience seems to have remained very rare. A description of what was most likely such a show in 1656 in France, was penned by the poet Jean Loret. The Parisian society were presented with upside-down images of palaces, ballet dancing and battling with swords. The performance was silent and Loret was surprised that all the movements made no sound. Loret felt somewhat frustrated that he did not know the secret that made this spectacle possible. There are several clues that this was a camera obscura show, rather than a very early magic lantern show, especially in the upside-down image and the energetic movements. [66]

German Jesuit scientist Gaspar Schott heard from a traveler about a small camera obscura device he had seen in Spain, which one could carry under one arm and could be hidden under a coat. He then constructed his own sliding box camera obscura, which could focus by sliding a wooden box part fitted inside another wooden box part. He wrote about this in his 1657 Magia universalis naturæ et artis (volume 1 – book 4 "Magia Optica" pages 199–201).

By 1659 the magic lantern was introduced and partly replaced the camera obscura as a projection device, while the camera obscura mostly remained popular as a drawing aid. The magic lantern can be seen as a development of the (box-type) camera obscura device.

The 17th century Dutch Masters, such as Johannes Vermeer, were known for their magnificent attention to detail. It has been widely speculated that they made use of the camera obscura, [61] but the extent of their use by artists at this period remains a matter of fierce contention, recently revived by the Hockney–Falco thesis. [48]

German philosopher Johann Sturm published an illustrated article about the construction of a portable camera obscura box with a 45° mirror and an oiled paper screen in the first volume of the proceedings of the Collegium Curiosum, Collegium Experimentale, sive Curiosum (1676). [67]

Johann Zahn's Oculus Artificialis Teledioptricus Sive Telescopium, published in 1685, contains many descriptions, diagrams, illustrations and sketches of both the camera obscura and the magic lantern. A hand-held device with a mirror-reflex mechanism was first proposed by Johann Zahn in 1685, a design that would later be used in photographic cameras. [68]

The scientist Robert Hooke presented a paper in 1694 to the Royal Society, in which he described a portable camera obscura. It was a cone-shaped box which fit onto the head and shoulders of its user. [69]

From the beginning of the 18th century, craftsmen and opticians would make camera obscura devices in the shape of books, which were much appreciated by lovers of optical devices. [29]

One chapter in the Conte Algarotti's Saggio sopra Pittura (1764) is dedicated to the use of a camera ottica ("optic chamber") in painting. [70]

By the 18th century, following developments by Robert Boyle and Robert Hooke, more easily portable models in boxes became available. These were extensively used by amateur artists while on their travels, but they were also employed by professionals, including Paul Sandby and Joshua Reynolds, whose camera (disguised as a book) is now in the Science Museum in London. Such cameras were later adapted by Joseph Nicephore Niepce, Louis Daguerre and William Fox Talbot for creating the first photographs.

3. The Ten Core Theses of Mohism

The contents of the ten triads and thus the outlines of the ten core theses are briefly described below:

Chapters 8-10, “Elevating the Worthy” (shangxian), argue that the policy of elevating worthy and capable people to office in government whatever their social origin is a fundamental principle of good governance. The proper implementation of such a policy requires that the rulers attract the talented to service by the conferring of honor, the reward of wealth and the delegation of responsibility (and thus power). On the other hand, the rulers’ practice of appointing kinsmen and favorites to office without regard to their abilities is condemned.

Chapters 11-13, “Exalting Unity” (shangtong), contain a state-of-nature argument on the basis of which it is concluded that a unified conception of what is morally right (yi) consistently enforced by a hierarchy of rulers and leaders is a necessary condition for social and political order. The thesis applies to the world community as a whole, conceived as a single moral-political hierarchy with the common people at the bottom, the feudal princes in the middle, and the emperor at the summit, above whom is Heaven itself.

Chapters 14-16, “Impartial Concern” (jian’ai), argue that the cause of the world’s troubles lies in people’s tendency to act out of a greater regard for their own welfare than that of others, and that of associates over that of strangers, with the consequence that they often have no qualms about benefiting themselves or their own associates at the expense of others. The conclusion is that people ought to be concerned for the welfare of others without making distinctions between self, associates and strangers.

Chapters 17-19, “Against Military Aggression” (feigong), condemn military aggression as both unprofitable (even for the aggressors) and immoral. Version C introduces a distinction between justified and unjustified warfare, claiming that the former was waged by the righteous ancient sage rulers to overthrow evil tyrants.

Chapters 20-21 (22 is listed as “missing”), “Frugality in Expenditures” (jieyong), argue that good governance requires thrift in the ruler’s expenditures. Useless luxuries are condemned. The chapters also argue for the clear priority of functionality over form in the making of various human artifacts (clothing, buildings, armor and weapons, boats and other vehicles).

Chapter 25 (23-24 are listed as “missing”), “Frugality in Funerals” (jiezang), has the same theme as “Frugality in Expenditures,” but applies it to the specific case of funeral rituals. The aristocratic practices of elaborate funerals and prolonged mourning are condemned as “not morally right” (buyi) because they are not only useless to solving the world’s problems, but add to the people’s burdens. Here, the Mohists target practices beloved by their Confucian contemporaries, for whom the maintenance of harmonious moral order in society is best accomplished through strict fidelity to ritual codes.

Chapters 26-28, “Heaven’s Will” (Tianzhi), argue that the will of Heaven (Tian) — portrayed as if it is a personal deity and providential agent who rewards the good and punishes the wicked — is the criterion of what is morally right. Here again, the Mohists contrast themselves with the Confucians, who regard Heaven as a moral but mysterious force that does not intervene directly in human affairs.

Chapter 31 (29-30 are listed as “missing”), “Elucidating the Spirits” (minggui), claims that a loss of belief in the existence, power and providential character of spirits — supernatural agents of Tian tasked with enforcing its sanctions — has led to widespread immorality and social and political chaos. The chapter consists of an exchange with certain skeptics, whom Mozi answers with arguments purporting to prove that providential spirits exist, but also that widespread belief in their existence brings great social and political benefit.

Chapter 32 (33-34 are listed as “missing”), “Against Music” (feiyue), condemns the musical displays of the aristocracy as immoralon the same basis according to which elaborate funerals and prolonged mourning are condemned in “Frugality in Funerals.” Just as in that chapter, here again the Mohists attack practices that are particularly dear to their Confucian rivals, who believe that music, if properly performed according to ancient canons, can play a vital role in the regulation of moral order and the cultivation of virtue.

Chapters 35-37, “Against Fatalism” (feiming), argue against the doctrine of fatalism (the thesis that human wisdom and effort have no effect on the outcomes of human endeavor) as pernicious and harmful in that widespread belief in it will lead to indolence and chaos. The chapters also contain crucial discussions on the general conditions or criteria (traditionally called the “Three Tests of Doctrine”) that must be met by any doctrine if it is to be considered sound. (See Section 5: “Moral Epistemology” below.)

Indian philosophy refers to ancient philosophical traditions (Sanskrit: dárśana 'world views', 'teachings') [4] of the Indian subcontinent. Jainism may have roots dating back to the times of the Indus Valley Civilization. [5] [6] [7] The major orthodox schools arose sometime between the start of the Common Era and the Gupta Empire. [8] These Hindu schools developed what has been called the "Hindu synthesis" merging orthodox Brahmanical and unorthodox elements from Buddhism and Jainism. [9] Hindu thought also spread east to the Indonesian Srivijaya empire and the Cambodian Khmer Empire. These religio-philosophical traditions were later grouped under the label Hinduism. Hinduism is the dominant religion, or way of life, [note 1] in South Asia. It includes Shaivism, Vaishnavism, and Shaktism [12] among numerous other traditions, and a wide spectrum of laws and prescriptions of "daily morality" based on karma, dharma, and societal norms. Hinduism is a categorization of distinct intellectual or philosophical points of view, rather than a rigid, common set of beliefs. [13] Hinduism, with about one billion followers [14] is the world's third-largest religion, after Christianity and Islam. Hinduism has been called the "oldest religion" in the world and is traditionally called Sanātana Dharma, "the eternal law" or the "eternal way" [15] [16] [17] beyond human origins. [17] Western scholars regard Hinduism as a fusion [note 2] or synthesis [18] [note 3] [18] of various Indian cultures and traditions, [19] [20] [21] with diverse roots [22] [note 4] and no single founder. [27]

Some of the earliest surviving philosophical texts are the Upanishads of the later Vedic period (1000–500 BCE). Important Indian philosophical concepts include dharma, karma, samsara, moksha, and ahimsa. Indian philosophers developed a system of epistemological reasoning (pramana) and logic and investigated topics such as Ontology (metaphysics, Brahman-Atman, Sunyata-Anatta), reliable means of knowledge (epistemology, Pramanas), value system (axiology) and other topics. [28] [29] [30] Indian philosophy also covered topics such as political philosophy as seen in the Arthashastra c. 4th century BCE and the philosophy of love as seen in the Kama Sutra. The Kural literature of the post-Sangam period between c. 1st century BCE and 5th century CE, written by the Tamil poet-philosopher Valluvar, is believed by many scholars to be based on Jain philosophies. [31] [32]

Later developments include the development of Tantra and Iranian-Islamic influences. Buddhism mostly disappeared from India after the Muslim conquest in the Indian subcontinent, surviving in the Himalayan regions and south India. [33] The early modern period saw the flourishing of Navya-Nyāya (the 'new reason') under philosophers such as Raghunatha Siromani (c. 1460–1540) who founded the tradition, Jayarama Pancanana, Mahadeva Punatamakara and Yashovijaya (who formulated a Jain response). [34]

Orthodox schools Edit

The principal Indian philosophical schools are classified as either orthodox or heterodox – āstika or nāstika – depending on one of three alternate criteria: whether it believes the Vedas are a valid source of knowledge whether the school believes in the premises of Brahman and Atman and whether the school believes in afterlife and Devas. [35] [36]

There are six major schools of orthodox Indian Hindu philosophy—Nyaya, Vaisheshika, Samkhya, Yoga, Mīmāṃsā and Vedanta, and five major heterodox schools—Jain, Buddhist, Ajivika, Ajñana, and Cārvāka. However, there are other methods of classification Vidyaranya for instance identifies sixteen schools of Hindu Indian philosophy by including those that belong to the Śaiva and Raseśvara traditions. [37] [38]

Each school of Hindu philosophy has extensive epistemological literature called Pramana-sastras. [39] [40]

In Hindu history, the distinction of the six orthodox schools was current in the Gupta period "golden age" of Hinduism. With the disappearance of Vaisheshika and Mīmāṃsā, it became obsolete by the later Middle Ages, when the various sub-schools of Vedanta (Dvaita "dualism", Advaita Vedanta "non-dualism" and others) began to rise to prominence as the main divisions of religious philosophy. Nyaya survived into the 17th century as Navya Nyaya "Neo-Nyaya", while Samkhya gradually lost its status as an independent school, its tenets absorbed into Yoga and Vedanta.

Sāmkhya and Yoga Edit

Sāmkhya is a dualist philosophical tradition based on the Samkhyakarika (c. 320–540 CE), [41] while the Yoga school was a closely related tradition emphasizing meditation and liberation whose major text is the Yoga sutras (c. 400 CE). [42] Elements of proto-Samkhya ideas can however be traced back to the period of the early Upanishads. [43] One of the main differences between the two closely related schools was that Yoga allowed for the existence of a God, while most Sāmkhya thinkers criticized this idea. [44]

Sāmkhya epistemology accepts three of six pramanas (proofs) as the only reliable means of gaining knowledge pratyakṣa (perception), anumāṇa (inference) and śabda (word/testimony of reliable sources). [45] The school developed a complex theoretical exposition of the evolution of consciousness and matter. Sāmkhya sources argue that the universe consists of two realities, puruṣa (consciousness) and prakṛti (matter).

As shown by the Sāṁkhyapravacana Sūtra (c. 14th century CE), Sāmkhya continued to develop throughout the medieval period.

Nyāya Edit

The Nyāya school of epistemology explores sources of knowledge (Pramāṇa) and is based on the Nyāya Sūtras (circa 6th century BCE and 2nd century CE). [46] Nyāya holds that human suffering arises out of ignorance and liberation arises through correct knowledge. Therefore, they sought to investigate the sources of correct knowledge or epistemology.

Nyāya traditionally accepts four Pramanas as reliable means of gaining knowledge – Pratyakṣa (perception), Anumāṇa (inference), Upamāṇa (comparison and analogy) and Śabda (word, testimony of past or present reliable experts). [45] Nyāya also traditionally defended a form of philosophical realism. [47]

The Nyāya Sūtras was a very influential text in Indian philosophy, laying the foundations for classical Indian epistemological debates between the different philosophical schools. It includes, for example, the classic Hindu rejoinders against Buddhist not-self (anatta) arguments. [48] The work also famously argues against a creator God (Ishvara), [49] a debate which became central to Hinduism in the medieval period.

Vaiśeṣika Edit

Vaiśeṣika is a naturalist school of atomism, which accepts only two sources of knowledge, perception, and inference. [50] This philosophy held that the universe was reducible to paramāṇu (atoms), which are indestructible (anitya), indivisible, and have a special kind of dimension, called “small” (aṇu). Whatever we experience is a composite of these atoms. [51]

Vaiśeṣika organized all objects of experience into what they called padārthas (literally: 'the meaning of a word') which included six categories dravya (substance), guṇa (quality), karma (activity), sāmānya (generality), viśeṣa (particularity) and samavāya (inherence). Later Vaiśeṣikas (Śrīdhara and Udayana and Śivāditya) added one more category abhava (non-existence). The first three categories are defined as artha (which can be perceived) and they have real objective existence. The last three categories are defined as budhyapekṣam (product of intellectual discrimination) and they are logical categories. [52]

Mīmāṃsā Edit

Mīmāṃsā is a school of ritual orthopraxy and is known for its hermeneutical study and interpretation of the Vedas. [53] For this tradition, the study of dharma as ritual and social duty was paramount. They also held that the Vedas were "eternal, authorless, [and] infallible" and that Vedic injunctions and mantras in rituals are prescriptive actions of primary importance. [53] Because of their focus on textual study and interpretation, Mīmāṃsā also developed theories of philology and the philosophy of language which influenced other Indian schools. [54] They primarily held that the purpose of language was to correctly prescribe proper actions, rituals, and correct dharma (duty or virtue). [55] Mīmāṃsā is also mainly atheistic, holding that the evidence for the existence of God is insufficient and that the Gods named in the Vedas have no existence apart from the names, mantras and their power. [56]

A key text of the Mīmāṃsā school is the Mīmāṃsā Sūtra of Jaimini and major Mīmāṃsā scholars include Prabhākara (c. 7th century) and Kumārila Bhaṭṭa (fl. roughly 700). The Mīmāṃsā school strongly influenced Vedānta which was also known as Uttara-Mīmāṃsā, however, while Mīmāṃsā emphasized karmakāṇḍa, or the study of ritual actions, using the four early Vedas, the Vedānta schools emphasized jñanakāṇḍa, the study of knowledge, using the later parts of Vedas like the Upaniṣads. [53]

Vedānta Edit

Vedānta (meaning "end of the Vedas") or Uttara-Mīmāṃsā, are a group of traditions which focus on the philosophical issues found in the Prasthanatrayi (the three sources), which are the Principal Upanishads, the Brahma Sutras and the Bhagavad Gita. [57] Vedānta sees the Vedas, particularly the Upanishads, as a reliable source of knowledge.

The central concern for these schools is the nature of and the relationship between Brahman (ultimate reality, universal consciousness), Ātman (individual soul) and Prakriti (empirical world).

The sub-traditions of Vedānta include Advaita (non-dualism), Vishishtadvaita (qualified non-dualism), Dvaita (dualism), and Bhedabheda (difference and non-difference). [58] Due to the popularity of the bhakti movement, Vedānta came to be the dominant current of Hinduism in the post-medieval period.

Other Edit

While the classical enumeration of Indian philosophies lists six orthodox schools, there are other schools that are sometimes seen as orthodox. These include: [37]

    , an ascetic school of Shaivism founded by Lakulisha (

Heterodox or Śramaṇic schools Edit

The nāstika or heterodox schools are associated with the non-Vedic Śramaṇic traditions that existed in India since before the 6th century BCE. [59] The Śramaṇa movement gave rise to a diverse range of non-Vedic ideas, ranging from accepting or denying the concepts of atman, atomism, materialism, atheism, agnosticism, fatalism to free will, extreme asceticism, strict ahimsa (non-violence) and vegetarianism. [60] Notable philosophies that arose from Śramaṇic movement were Jainism, early Buddhism, Cārvāka, Ajñana, and Ājīvika. [61]

Jain philosophy Edit

Jain philosophy deals extensively with the problems of metaphysics, reality, cosmology, ontology, epistemology, and divinity. Jainism is essentially a transtheistic religion of ancient India. [62] : 182 It continues the ancient Śramaṇa tradition, which co-existed with the Vedic tradition since ancient times. [63] [64] The distinguishing features of Jain philosophy include a mind-body dualism, denial of a creative and omnipotent God, karma, an eternal and uncreated universe, non-violence, the theory of the multiple facets of truth, and morality based on liberation of the soul. Jain philosophy attempts to explain the rationale of being and existence, the nature of the Universe and its constituents, the nature of the bondage and the means to achieve liberation. [65] It has often been described as an ascetic movement for its strong emphasis on self-control, austerities, and renunciation. [66] It has also been called a model of philosophical liberalism for its insistence that truth is relative and multifaceted and for its willingness to accommodate all possible view-points of the rival philosophies. [67] Jainism strongly upholds the individualistic nature of the soul and personal responsibility for one's decisions, and that self-reliance and individual efforts alone are responsible for one's liberation. [68]

The contribution of the Jains in the development of Indian philosophy has been significant. Jain philosophical concepts like Ahimsa, Karma, Moksa, Samsara, and the like are common with other Indian religions like Hinduism and Buddhism in various forms. [69] While Jainism traces its philosophy from teachings of Mahavira and other Tirthankaras, various Jain philosophers from Kundakunda and Umasvati in ancient times to Yasovijaya and Shrimad Rajchandra in recent times have contributed to Indian philosophical discourse in uniquely Jain ways.

Cārvāka Edit

Cārvāka or Lokāyata was an atheistic philosophy of scepticism and materialism, who rejected the Vedas and all associated supernatural doctrines. [70] Cārvāka philosophers like Brihaspati were extremely critical of other schools of philosophy of the time. Cārvāka deemed the Vedas to be tainted by the three faults of untruth, self-contradiction, and tautology. [71] They declared the Vedas to be incoherent rhapsodies invented by humans whose only usefulness was to provide a livelihood to priests. [72]

Likewise, they faulted Buddhists and Jains, mocking the concept of liberation, reincarnation, and accumulation of merit or demerit through karma. [73] They believed the viewpoint of relinquishing pleasure to avoid pain was the "reasoning of fools". [71] Cārvāka epistemology holds perception as the primary source of knowledge while rejecting inference which can be invalid. [74] The primary texts of Cārvāka, like the Barhaspatya sutras (c. 600 BCE) have been lost. [75]

Ājīvika Edit

Original scriptures of the Ājīvika school of philosophy may once have existed, but these are currently unavailable and probably lost. Their theories are extracted from mentions of Ajivikas in the secondary sources of ancient Hindu Indian literature, particularly those of Jainism and Buddhism which polemically criticized the Ajivikas. [77] The Ājīvika school is known for its Niyati doctrine of absolute determinism (fate), the premise that there is no free will, that everything that has happened, is happening and will happen is entirely preordained and a function of cosmic principles. [77] [78] Ājīvika considered the karma doctrine as a fallacy. [79] Ājīvikas were atheists [80] and rejected the authority of the Vedas, but they believed that in every living being is an ātman – a central premise of Hinduism and Jainism. [81] [82]

Ajñana Edit

Ajñana was a Śramaṇa school of radical Indian skepticism and a rival of early Buddhism and Jainism. They held that it was impossible to obtain knowledge of metaphysical nature or ascertain the truth value of philosophical propositions [83] and even if knowledge was possible, it was useless and disadvantageous for final salvation. They were seen as sophists who specialized in refutation without propagating any positive doctrine of their own. Jayarāśi Bhaṭṭa (fl. c. 800), the author of the skeptical work entitled Tattvopaplavasiṃha ("The Lion that Devours All Categories"/"The Upsetting of All Principles"), has been seen as an important Ajñana philosopher. [84]

Buddhist philosophies Edit

Buddhist philosophy begins with the thought of Gautama Buddha (fl. between sixth and fourth centuries BCE) and is preserved in the early Buddhist texts. It generally refers to the philosophical investigations that developed among various Buddhist schools in India and later spread throughout Asia through the silk road. Buddhist thought is trans-regional and trans-cultural. It is the dominant philosophical tradition in Tibet and Southeast Asian countries like Sri Lanka and Burma.

Buddhism's main concern is soteriological, defined as freedom from dukkha (unease). [85] Because ignorance of the true nature of things is considered one of the roots of suffering, Buddhist thinkers concerned themselves with philosophical questions related to epistemology and the use of reason. [86] Key Buddhist concepts include the Four Noble Truths, Anatta (not-self) a critique of a fixed personal identity, the transience of all things (Anicca), and a certain skepticism about metaphysical questions. Buddhist thinkers in India and subsequently in East Asia have covered topics as varied as phenomenology, ethics, ontology, epistemology, logic, and philosophy of time.

Later Buddhist philosophical traditions developed complex phenomenological psychologies termed 'Abhidharma'. Mahayana philosophers such as Nagarjuna and Vasubandhu developed the theories of Shunyata (emptiness of all phenomena) and Vijnapti-matra (appearance only), a form of phenomenology or transcendental idealism. [87] The Dignāga (c. 480–540) school of Pramāṇa promoted a complex form of epistemology and Buddhist logic. This tradition contributed to what has been called an "epistemological turn" in Indian philosophy. [88] Through the work of Dharmakirti, this tradition of Buddhist logic has become the major epistemological system used in Tibetan Buddhist philosophy and debate. [89]

After the disappearance of Buddhism from India, these philosophical traditions continued to develop in the Tibetan Buddhist, East Asian Buddhist, and Theravada Buddhist traditions. In Tibet, the Indian tradition continued to be developed under the work of thinkers like Sakya Pandita, Tsongkhapa, and Ju Mipham. In China, new developments were led by thinkers such as Xuangzang who authored new works on Yogacara, Zhiyi who founded the Tiantai school and developed a new theory of Madhyamaka and Guifeng Zongmi who wrote on Huayan and Zen.

Buddhist modernism Edit

The modern period saw the rise of Buddhist modernism and Humanistic Buddhism under Western influences and the development of Western Buddhism with influences from modern psychology and Western philosophy. Important exponents of Buddhist modernism include Anagarika Dharmapala (1864–1933) and the American convert Henry Steel Olcott, the Chinese modernists Taixu (1890–1947) and Yin Shun (1906–2005), Zen scholar D.T. Suzuki, and the Tibetan Gendün Chöphel (1903–1951). Buddhist modernism refers to "forms of Buddhism that have emerged out of engagement with the dominant cultural and intellectual forces of modernity." [90] Forces which influenced modernists like Dhammapala and Yin Shun included Enlightenment values and Western Science. A Neo-Buddhist movement was founded by the influential Indian Dalit leader B. R. Ambedkar in the 1950s who emphasized social and political reform. [91]

Buddhist modernism includes various movements like Humanistic Buddhism, Secular Buddhism, the Vipassana movement, and Engaged Buddhism. Chinese humanistic Buddhism or "Buddhism for Human Life" (Chinese: 人生佛教 pinyin: rénshēng fójiào) which was to be free of supernatural beliefs has also been an influential form of modern Buddhism in Asia. [92]

Sikh philosophy Edit

Sikhism is an Indian religion developed by Guru Nanak (1469–1539) in the Punjab region during the Mughal Era. Their main sacred text is the Guru Granth Sahib. The fundamental beliefs include constant spiritual meditation of God's name, being guided by the Guru instead of yielding to capriciousness, living a householder's life instead of monasticism, truthful action to dharam (righteousness, moral duty), equality of all human beings, and believing in God's grace. [93] [94] Key concepts include Simran, Sewa, the Three Pillars of Sikhism, and the Five Thieves.

Modern Indian philosophy Edit

In response to colonialism and their contact with Western philosophy, 19th-century Indians developed new ways of thinking now termed Neo-Vedanta and Hindu modernism. Their ideas focused on the universality of Indian philosophy (particularly Vedanta) and the unity of different religions. It was during this period that Hindu modernists presented a single idealized and united "Hinduism." exemplified by the philosophy of Advaita Vedanta. [95] They were also influenced by Western ideas. [96] The first of these movements was that of the Brahmo Samaj of Ram Mohan Roy (1772–1833). [97] Swami Vivekananda (1863–1902) was very influential in developing the Hindu reform movements and in bringing the worldview to the West. [98] Through the work of Indians like Vivekananda as well as westerners such as the proponents of the Theosophical society, modern Hindu thought also influenced western culture. [99]

The political thought of Hindu nationalism is also another important current in modern Indian thought. The work of Mahatma Gandhi, Deendayal Upadhyaya, Rabindranath Tagore, Aurobindo, Krishna Chandra Bhattacharya, and Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan has had a large impact on modern Indian philosophy. [100]

Jainism also had its modern interpreters and defenders, such as Virchand Gandhi, Champat Rai Jain, and Shrimad Rajchandra (well known as a spiritual guide of Mahatma Gandhi).

Chinese Edit

East Asian philosophical thought began in Ancient China, and Chinese philosophy begins during the Western Zhou Dynasty and the following periods after its fall when the "Hundred Schools of Thought" flourished (6th century to 221 BCE). [101] [102] This period was characterized by significant intellectual and cultural developments and saw the rise of the major Chinese philosophical schools (Confucianism, Legalism, and Daoism) as well as numerous less influential schools (Mohism, School of Names, School of Yin Yang). These philosophical traditions developed metaphysical, political, and ethical theories which, along with Chinese Buddhism, had a direct influence on the rest of the East Asian cultural sphere. Buddhism began arriving in China during the Han Dynasty (206 BCE–220 CE), through a gradual Silk road transmission and gradually developed distinct Chinese forms (such as Chan/Zen).

Confucianism Edit

Confucianism (Kǒngjiào — "Confucius' doctrine"), also known as "Ruism" (Rújiào — "doctrine of the scholars"), is a Chinese philosophical system with ritual, moral, and religious applications. [103] The tradition developed around the teachings of Confucius (Kǒng Fūzǐ, 孔夫子, "Master Kong", 551–479 BCE) who saw himself as transmitting the values and theology of the ancestors before him. [104] Other influential classical Confucian philosophers include Mencius and Xun Kuang who famously disagreed on the innate moral nature of humans.

Confucianism focuses on humanistic values like familial and social harmony, filial piety (孝, xiào), Rén (仁, "benevolence" or "humaneness") and (禮/礼) which is a system of ritual norms that determines how a person should act to be in harmony with the law of Heaven. Confucianism traditionally holds that these values are based on the transcendent principle known as Heaven (Tiān 天), and also includes the belief in spirits or gods (shén). [105]

Confucianism was a major ideology of the imperial state during the Han dynasty (206 BCE–220 CE) and was revived as Neo-Confucianism during the Tang dynasty (618–907). During later Chinese dynasties like Song Dynasty (960–1297) and the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644) as well as in the Korean Joseon dynasty (1392–1897) a resurgent Neo-Confucianism led by thinkers such as Zhu Xi (1130–1200) and Wang Yangming (1472–1529) became the dominant school of thought and was promoted by the imperial state. Beginning in the Song dynasty, Confucian classics were the basis of the imperial exams and became the core philosophy of the scholar-official class. Confucianism suffered setbacks during the 20th century, but is recently undergoing a revival, which is termed New Confucianism. [106]

Traditionally, East Asian cultures and countries in the cultural sphere are strongly influenced by Confucianism, including Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Vietnam as well as various overseas territories settled predominantly by Overseas Chinese, such as Singapore.

Legalism Edit

Legalism (pinyin: Fǎjiā school of "methods" or "standards") [107] was a philosophical tradition which focused on laws, realpolitik, and bureaucratic management. [108] Largely ignoring morality or idealized views of how society should be, they focused on the pragmatic government through the power of the autocrat and state. Their goal was to achieve increased order, security, and stability. [109] They were initially influenced by Mohist ideas. [110] A key figure of this school was administrator and political philosopher Shen Buhai (c. 400–337 BCE). [111] Another central figure, Shang Yang (390–338 BCE), was a leading statesman and reformer who transformed the Qin state into the dominant power that conquered the rest of China in 221 BCE. [112] Shen's successor Han Fei (c. 280–233 BCE) synthesized the thought of the other Legalists in his eponymous text, the Han Feizi, one of the most influential Legalist texts which was used by successive Chinese statesmen and rulers as a guide for statesmanship and bureaucratic organization of the imperial state. [113] [114]

Mohism Edit

Mohism (Mòjiā "School of Mo"), was founded by Mozi (c. 470–391 BCE) and his students. It was a major school of thought and rival of Confucianism and Taoism during the Spring and Autumn and Warring States periods (c. 770–221 BCE). The main text of the school is the Mozi (book). The administrative thought of Mohism was later absorbed by Legalism, their ethics absorbed into Confucianism and its books were also merged into the Taoist canon, as Mohism all but disappeared as an independent school after the Qin dynasty era.

Mohism is best known for the idea of "impartial care" (Chinese: 兼愛 pinyin: jiān ài literally: "inclusive love/care"). [115] According to Master Mo, persons should care equally for all other individuals, regardless of their actual relationship to them. Mo also advocated impartial meritocracy in government which should be based on talent, not blood relations. Mozi was against Confucian ritualism, instead emphasizing pragmatic survival through farming, fortification, and statecraft. Tradition is inconsistent, and human beings need an extra-traditional guide to identify which traditions are acceptable. The moral guide must then promote and encourage social behaviors that maximize the general benefit. As motivation for his theory, Mozi brought in the Will of Heaven, but rather than being religious his philosophy parallels utilitarianism.

Mohism was also associated with and influenced by a separate philosophical school known as the School of Names (Míngjiā also known as 'Logicians'), that focused on the philosophy of language, definition, and logic.

Taoism Edit

Taoism (or Daoism) is a term for various philosophies and religious systems that emphasize harmony with the Tao (Chinese: 道 pinyin: Dào literally: "the Way") which is seen as the principle which is the source, pattern, and substance of everything that exists. [116] Taoism tends to emphasize virtues such as wu wei (effortless action), ziran (naturalness), pu (simplicity), and spontaneity while placing less emphasis on norms and ritual (as opposed to Confucianism). The attainment of immortality through external alchemy (waidan) and internal alchemy (neidan) was an important goal for many Taoists historically. [117]

Early forms of Taoism developed in the 4th century BCE, influenced by the cosmological theories of the School of Naturalists and the I Ching. The School of Naturalists or Yin-yang was another philosophical school that synthesized the concepts of yin-yang and the Five Elements Zou Yan is considered the founder. [118]

The Dao De Jing (Tao-Te-Ching, c. 4th century BCE), traditionally attributed to Laozi, and the Nan Hua Jing (Zhuang Zi) are considered the key texts of the tradition. [119] The first organized form of Taoism, the Tianshi (Celestial Masters') school arose in the 2nd century CE. Xuanxue ("deep learning", also "Neo-Taoism") was a major philosophical movement influenced by Confucian scholarship, which focused on the interpretation of the Yijing, Daodejing, and Zhuangzi and which flourished during the third to sixth centuries CE. [120] The most important philosophers of this movement were He Yan, Wang Bi, the Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove, Ge Hong, and Guo Xiang. [121] Thinkers like He Yan and Wang Bi focused on the deep nature of Tao, which they saw as being best exemplified by the term "Wu" (nothingness, non-being, negativity). [122]

Other schools rose to prominence throughout Chinese history, such as the Shangqing school during the Tang dynasty (618–907), the Lingbao school during the Song dynasty (960–1279) and the Quanzhen School which develop during the 13th–14th centuries and during the Yuan dynasty. [123] The later Taoist traditions were also influenced by Chinese Buddhism. [124]

Modern East Asian philosophy Edit

Chinese Edit

Modern Chinese thought is generally seen as being rooted in Classical Confucianism (Jingxue), Neo-Confucianism (Lixue), Buddhism, Daoism, and Xixue (“Western Learning” which arose during the late Ming Dynasty). [125]

The Opium war of 1839–42 saw the beginning of Western and Japanese invasions and exploitation of China which was humiliating to Chinese thinkers. The late 19th and early 20th century saw Chinese thinkers such as Zhang Zhidong looking to Western practical knowledge as a way to preserve traditional Chinese culture, a doctrine that he defined as “Chinese Learning as Substance and Western Learning as Function” (Zhongti Xiyong). [126]

The traditionalists meanwhile sought to revive and fortify traditional Chinese philosophical schools. Chinese Buddhist thought was promoted by thinkers like Yang Rensan and Ou-Yang Jingwu [127] while another influential movement is New Confucianism (Chinese: 新儒家 pinyin: xīn rú jiā). New Confucianism is a traditionalist revival of Confucian thought in China beginning in the 20th-century Republican China which is also associated with New Conservatism. Key New Confucians of the first generation are Xiong Shili and Fung Youlan. [128] The second generation (1950–1979) include individuals like Tang Junyi, Mou Zongsan, and Xu Fuguan, all three students of Xiong Shili. Together with Zhang Junmai, the second generation published the New Confucian Manifesto in 1958.

Japanese Edit

Modern Japanese thought is strongly influenced by Western science and philosophy. Japan's rapid modernization was partly aided by the early study of western science (known as Rangaku) during the Edo Period (1603–1868). Another intellectual movement during the Edo period was Kokugaku (national study), which sought to focus on the study of ancient Japanese thought, classic texts, and culture over and against foreign Chinese and Buddhist cultures. [129] A key figure of this movement is Motoori Norinaga (1730–1801), who argued that the essence of classic Japanese literature and culture was a sense called mono no aware ("sorrow at evanescence"). [130]

In the Meiji period (1868–1912), the modernist Meirokusha (Meiji 6, formed in 1874) intellectual society promoted European enlightenment thought. Meirokusha philosophers like Mori Arinori, Nishi Amane, and Fukuzawa Yukichi sought ways to combine Western ideas with Japanese culture and values. The Shōwa period (1926–1989) saw the rise of State Shinto and Japanese nationalism.

Japanese Buddhist philosophy was influenced by the work of the Kyoto School which drew from western philosophers (especially German philosophy) and Buddhist thought and included Kitaro Nishida, Keiji Nishitani, Hajime Tanabe, and Masao Abe. The most important trend in Japanese Buddhist thought after the formation of the Kyoto school is Critical Buddhism, which argues against several Mahayana concepts such as Buddha-nature and original enlightenment. [92]

Korean Edit

Juche, usually translated as "self-reliance", is the official political ideology of North Korea, described by the regime as Kim Il-Sung's "original, brilliant and revolutionary contribution to national and international thought". [131] The idea states that an individual is "the master of his destiny" [132] and that the North Korean masses are to act as the "masters of the revolution and construction". [132]

Modern Edit

In the modern era, there have been many attempts to integrate Western and Eastern philosophical traditions.

Arthur Schopenhauer developed a philosophy that was essentially a synthesis of Hinduism with Western thought. He anticipated that the Upanishads (primary Hindu scriptures) would have a much greater influence in the West than they have had. However, Schopenhauer was working with heavily flawed early translations (and sometimes second-degree translations), and many feel that he may not necessarily have accurately grasped the Eastern philosophies which interested him. [133]

Recent attempts to incorporate Western philosophy into Eastern thought include the Kyoto School of philosophers, who combined the phenomenology of Husserl with the insights of Zen Buddhism. Watsuji Tetsurô, a 20th-century Japanese philosopher attempted to combine the works of Søren Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, and Heidegger with Eastern philosophies. Some have claimed that there is also a definite eastern element within Heidegger's philosophy. [134] For the most part, this is not made explicit within Heidegger's philosophy, apart from in the dialogue between a Japanese and inquirer. Heidegger did spend time attempting to translate the Tao Te Ching into German, working with his Chinese student Paul Hsaio. It has also been claimed that much of Heidegger's later philosophy, particularly the sacredness of Being, bears a distinct similarity to Taoist ideas. There are clear parallels between Heidegger and the work of Kyoto School, and ultimately, it may be read that Heidegger's philosophy is an attempt to 'turn eastwards' in response to the crisis in Western civilization. However, this is only an interpretation.

The 20th-century Hindu guru Sri Aurobindo was influenced by German Idealism and his integral yoga is regarded as a synthesis of Eastern and Western thought. The German phenomenologist Jean Gebser's writings on the history of consciousness referred to a new planetary consciousness that would bridge this gap. Followers of these two authors are often grouped together under the term Integral thought.

Following the Xinhai Revolution in 1911 and the end of the Qing Dynasty, the May Fourth Movement sought to completely abolish the old imperial institutions and practices of China (such as the old civil service system). There were two major philosophical trends during this period. One was anti-traditional and promoted Western learning and ideas. A key figure of this anti-traditional current was Yan Fu (1853–1921) who translated various Western philosophical works including Smith's The Wealth of Nations and Mill's On Liberty. [135] There were also attempts to incorporate Western ideas of democracy, and republicanism into Chinese political philosophy, notably by Sun Yat-Sen (1866–1925) at the beginning of the 20th century. Another influential modern Chinese philosopher was Hu Shih, who was a student of John Dewey at Columbia University and who promoted a form of pragmatism.

The influence of Marxism on modern Chinese political thought is vast, especially through the work of Mao Zedong, the most famous thinker of Chinese Marxist Philosophy. Maoism is a Chinese Marxist philosophy based on the teachings of the 20th-century Communist Party of China revolutionary leader Mao Zedong. It is based partially on earlier theories by Marx and Lenin, but rejects the urban proletariat and Leninist emphasis on heavy industrialization in favor of a revolution supported by the peasantry, and a decentralized agrarian economy based on many collectively worked farms. The current government of the People's Republic of China continues to espouse a pragmatic form of socialism as its official party ideology which it calls Socialism with Chinese characteristics. When the Communist Party of China took over the reign, previous schools of thought such as Taoism and Confucianism (except Legalism) were denounced as backward, and later purged during the violence of the Cultural Revolution which saw many Taoist and Buddhist temples and institutions destroyed.

Swiss psychologist Carl Jung was deeply influenced by the I Ching (Book of Changes), an ancient Chinese text that dates back to the Bronze Age Shang Dynasty (c. 1700–1050 BCE). It uses a system of Yin and Yang, which it places into hexagrams for the purposes of divination. Carl Jung's idea of synchronicity moves towards an Oriental view of causality, as he states in the foreword to Richard Wilhelm's translation of the I Ching. [136] He explains that this Chinese view of the world is based not on science as the West knows it, but on chance.

Some Western thinkers claim that philosophy as such is only characteristic of Western cultures. The German philosopher Martin Heidegger is even reported to have said that only Greek and German languages are suitable for philosophizing. [137] It is still commonplace in Western universities to teach only Western philosophy and to ignore Asian philosophy altogether, or consider only newer Western-influenced Asian thought proper "philosophy". Carine Defoort, herself a specialist in Chinese thought, has offered support for such a "family" view of philosophy, [138] while Rein Raud has presented an argument [139] against it and offered a more flexible definition of philosophy that would include both Western and Asian thought on equal terms. In response, Ouyang Min argues that philosophy proper is a Western cultural practice and essentially different from zhexue, which is what the Chinese have, [140] even though zhexue (originally tetsugaku) is actually a neologism coined in 1873 by Nishi Amane for describing Western philosophy as opposed to traditional Asian thought. [141]

According to the British philosopher Victoria S. Harrison, the category of "Eastern philosophy", and similarly "Asian philosophy" and "Oriental philosophy" is a product of 19th-century Western scholarship and did not exist in East Asia or India. This is because in Asia there is no single unified philosophical tradition with a single root, but various autonomous traditions that have come into contact with each other over time. [142]

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5. Logic and Argumentation

Besides its role in their epistemology, the theory of the three fa (models) epitomizes the Mohists&rsquo view of logic and argumentation. The Mohists do not investigate formal logic or develop a notion of logical consequence. Rather, since they see judgment as a matter of distinguishing whether something is one kind of thing or another, they tend to conceive of all reasoning on the model of informal, analogical inference. Particular pieces of reasoning in Mohist texts may be deductive, inductive, analogical, or causal. But the Mohists themselves seem to regard all of these as different ways of applying fa to draw distinctions between similar and dissimilar kinds of things.

Their basic model of reasoning can be thought of as comprising three parts. (1) One or more fa (standards, models, or examples) are cited by which to distinguish &ldquothis&rdquo from &ldquonot&rdquo or to guide the use of some term, such as ren (benevolent) or yi (morally righteous). (2) Then it is indicated how some object, event, or practice does or does not &ldquoconform&rdquo to or &ldquocoincide&rdquo with the fa. (3) Accordingly, the thing in question is distinguished as &ldquothis&rdquo or &ldquonot,&rdquo as benevolent and righteous or unbenevolent and unrighteous. So what we think of as the major premise in a syllogistic piece of reasoning, the Mohists probably see as citing a fa. What we call a minor premise, they see as a claim that something &ldquoconforms&rdquo to the fa. What we think of as drawing a conclusion, they see as distinguishing whether or not something is the same kind of thing as the fa. Later Mohist texts make it clear that this reasoning process is regarded as a form of analogical inference or projection, which they call &ldquoextending kinds&rdquo (tui lei) &mdash that is, &ldquoextending&rdquo our judgment of what counts as &ldquoof the same kind&rdquo to include new cases. In practice, &ldquoextending kinds&rdquo amounts to taking the judgment that things are &ldquoof a kind&rdquo (lei) in one or more respects as a basis for treating them as &ldquoof a kind&rdquo in another.

The three fa method of argument is one application of this general type of argument by example or analogy. But the three fa are not the only standards or models the Mohists employ. They regularly cite others, such as the behavior of the paradigmatic benevolent person (ren ren) or filial son (xiao zi). Many Mohist arguments proceed by establishing such a model or example and then contending that Mohist doctrine conforms to it, and is thus correct. For instance, two of the main arguments for the doctrine of inclusive care begin by citing the model of the benevolent person, who &ldquoseeks to promote the world&rsquos benefit and eliminate the world&rsquos harm&rdquo (books 15 and 16). The text goes on to argue that the doctrine of inclusive care promotes benefit to all and so conforms to the standard set by the benevolent person. Thus inclusive care is benevolent and righteous.

A second example is the chief argument against extravagant funerals (Book 25). It too begins by citing the benevolent person as an ethical paradigm, but here the opening move is to establish, by analogy, the attitude of the filial son toward his parents as a model for that of the benevolent person toward society: &ldquoThe benevolent person&rsquos planning on behalf of the world, to give an analogy, is in no respect different from the filial son&rsquos planning on behalf of his parents.&rdquo The filial son seeks to provide his parents with wealth, a large family, and social order. So too has the benevolent person &ldquothree duties&rdquo on behalf of society: to secure wealth, a large population, and social order. Having established these &ldquothree benefits&rdquo as criteria for what is benevolent and righteous, the text goes on to argue that the practice of lavish funerals and lengthy mourning yields poverty, a small population, and social turmoil, and thus is &ldquounbenevolent, unrighteous, and not the deed of a filial son.&rdquo

Both the inclusive care argument and the funerals argument illustrate another common Mohist rhetorical strategy: tracing the causal consequences of a doctrine or policy, typically to show that Mohist doctrine yields results that tally with some standard while an opposing doctrine does not. One text (Book 16) dubs this argument technique &ldquodeveloping two alternatives&rdquo (liang er jin zhi). The text identifies two contrasting moral guidelines, &ldquoinclusive&rdquo versus &ldquoexclusive&rdquo moral concern, and explores their causal consequences to see which yields results that conform to the ethical standard of &ldquopromoting the world&rsquos benefit and eliminating the world&rsquos harm.&rdquo That alternative &mdash &ldquoinclusive&rdquo concern, as the Mohists see it &mdash is therefore &ldquothis&rdquo or &ldquoright&rdquo (shi), the other &ldquonot&rdquo (fei).

Thought Itself

Not much is known about Master Mo, but he was certainly the founder of Moism, one of the four major schools of the Period of the Hundred Philosophers (along with Confucianism, Daoism, and Legalism). His disciples collected his sayings and dialogues to make the Mozi text, just as the disciples of Confucius and Mencius did. It is believed that Mozi lived sometime between the death of Confucius in 479 BCE and the birth of Mencius in 372 BCE and that the Moist school was flourishing around the year 400 BCE (the same time as Plato and Aristotle in ancient Greece).

One ancient work says that Mozi studied Confucianism at a Confucian school, but then became disgusted and developed his philosophy in opposition to Confucianism. Mozi does frequently quote the Book of Odes and the Book of History, books that Confucius compiled as textbooks for his students. We know that Confucianism and Moism were both flourishing and in competition at the same time from texts like the Daoist text the Zhuangzi (in which Zhuangzi states that what the Confucians call right the Moists call wrong and vice versa). Like Confucius, Mozi likely traveled to schools and noble courts expounding his philosophy and seeking students and supporters. Nobles and other wealthy individuals would often put on banquets and debates for education and entertainment.

Because Mozi was a great critic of the excesses of the powerful and champion of the common people, some scholars have speculated that Mozi was of the lower classes. He may have been a craftsman, as he often uses metaphors such as a compass, carpenter’s square, and plumb lines. Some even say he could have been an ex-convict and Mo meant tattoo, like the sort used to brand ex-cons as a punishment (thus, Mozi would mean ‘Master Tattoo’ or ‘Master Tat’). These scholars are likely thinking of Zhuangzi’s use of ex-con teachers countering Confucius while playing the Moists and Confucians against each other.

While Mozi criticized the luxurious excesses of dancing girls and music of the wealthy, particularly in light of the suffering of the poor and oppressed as the wealthy spent vast sums of money on extravagant entertainment, it is unlikely that an ex-con would have access to the noble courts and fine houses that Mozi frequented in seeking to expand the influence and membership of his school of thought. Unlikely, but perhaps his teachings and following were impressive enough to grant him aristocratic audiences.

How could Mozi get away with criticizing the powerful? Mozi argued (as did the Confucians) that it is behavior that makes one a good person and not high birth, arguing for meritocracy over aristocracy like the Confucians. As in ancient India, and common in all human cultures ancient and modern, the top ranks of power are in constant struggle with the up and coming powers. In India, Buddha, Mahavira and other great philosophers were second class educated who were critical of the upper class and older traditions. In ancient China, Moism and Confucianism (as well as other schools) appealed to the newer and lower nobles and wealthy who did not have the finest families but surrounded themselves with the talented and new artists and thinkers. These ‘new rich’ patrons would have found much in Moism, Confucianism, as well as Daoism.

Unfortunately, it may have been the hard-lining Moist stance against the top levels of society that ultimately resulted in the downfall of Moism when the Qin unified China and endorsed the Legalists, followed by the Han who endorsed the Confucians and Daoists. Moism was neglected for 1,500 years afterwards. It was only in the times of Song Neo-Confucianism, ironically, that Mozi was reexamined along with Buddhism and put in a Confucian context.

Like Xunzi, Mozi was exceptional at examining the validity of beliefs. He had a system of three tests. First, one should seek the origin of the belief (remember, the ways of the sage kings were highly valued and used by most schools of ancient Chinese thought, and Confucians, Moists and Daoists each argued that the great Sage Kings such as Yao and Shun had used their own ways in the ancient times of great prosperity and culture).

Second, one should seek the empirical validity of the belief, or how well the belief corresponds to what we have discovered to be true based on evidence. Interestingly, Mozi argues that there must certainly be ghosts, as so many people have reported seeing them. We do know that a typical symptom of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after engaging in violence is seeing victims in both waking hallucinations and in dreams, being haunted by those one has hurt. While most would today consider this haunting to be psychological, not supernatural, Mozi could certainly have traveled the globe and found much evidence across all cultures that ghosts exist and punish the wicked, which he argued was the natural morality of the universe.

Third, one should seek the practicality and applicability of the belief, identical to the Utilitarianism of John Stuart Mill. Mozi was quite a Utilitarian, arguing that all things, including beliefs, should be used to maximize happiness and minimize pain for all of society. While he argued that this was the way of the sage kings, Confucians found many sympathetic to the counter-argument that such Utilitarianism threatened to do away with tradition, such as funeral practices and patronizing the arts. Mozi argued that the belief that ghosts punish the wicked is not only true based on the evidence, but on its usefulness. If evil people are afraid of being haunted and persecuted by ghosts for their crimes, it makes them less likely to commit offenses. For example, if you do not turn in all of your response essays, my vengeful spirit will haunt your grade point average until your dying day.

On the issue of spirits and traditional folk belief, remember that Confucius was interested in preserving ritual but had not spoken of the Lord of Heaven but rather the Mandate of Heaven and the Dao, the Way, of Heaven, much like the Daoists, a move toward abstract philosophical monism. Mozi saw this as a dangerous departure from the ways of the ancients, and argued that there was a great and good highest god that views all equally as each individual should strive to view others as equal to themselves. In the same way, while Confucius said, “You do not know how to serve humanity, how can you feed ghosts and spirits?”, Mozi argued that the traditional views of ghosts was correct and important for social morality. Mozi believed that the agnosticism and monism of the Confucians was not in line with the practices of the great sage kings, and that it was corruptive, encouraging the individual to be partial to themselves rather than serve others.

The Moists are most famous for their doctrine of universal love, which we discussed last time in dialog with Mencius. Mozi had the hard task of trying to convince rulers and common people alike that they should not only love others as themselves, which the Confucians also teach, but that they should love other families as they love their own families and love people of other countries as they love the people of their own country. In accord with his three tests, Mozi argues that universal love was 1) the practice of the sage kings, 2) is the best practice based on evidence of social behavior, and 3) is practical and could be put into practice within a single generation if enough rulers were convinced that it is in their own best interest as well as in their people’s best interest.

Paradoxically, Mozi argues that when we look at things dispassionately, without the biases of a Confucian for their family or nation, we can see that compassion for all equally is the best strategy for a healthy individual and society. Not only does looking at things objectively and with emotional detachment give us the best mind for seeking truth, it teaches us about proper emotional conduct. Mozi argues that all problems, both of individuals and of society, are caused by bias and partiality. Just as we trust others when we know that they are impartial, judging them by their words and actions when they can benefit themselves more than others but do not, we trust our rulers and ourselves when they and we are impartial. Mozi’s ‘universal love’ is passionate, but it is akin to Buddhist emptiness, which as openness is compassion but also detachment.

Mencius seems terrified by Moism, his major rival in Northeast China at the time, saying, “The ideas of Yang Chu and Mozi fill the world” (Mencius 3B:9). Yang Chu and Mozi were equal opposite extremes which Mencius feared would cause individuals to fall from the middle way and balance of opposites proper to the great cultivated person. Yang Chu, whose school did not survive the Qin and Han unification of China, taught a sort of social Darwinism, that it is everyone for themselves, while Mozi taught universal love, that everyone should care for everyone as they do for themselves. The Confucians’ doctrine of loving all but having particular love for one’s family, friends and country was offered as a middle way between these two extremes. Against Mozi, Mencius argues that loving everyone as one loves one’s own father is like one has no father, that loving everyone as one loves one’s own children is like one has no children. Considering the emphasis that Confucians such as Mencius put on following one’s father, this would be a great evil.

Recall that Mencius argues against the Moist Yi Chih, also known as Yizi, Master Yi, that society began with the burial of the dead. Our early ancestors began to bury the bodies of those who died because they became distressed seeing animals and insects consume the bodies. Yi Chih does not object, and the text seems to present this as Mencius’ argument going unanswered and thus it being a victory for Mencius. However, why should Moist Master Yi object? Mencius is implying that the ancestors buried their family and friends, but it could equally be argued that they buried those of their community, considering that communities were much smaller and more intimate in earlier times. Whether or not Yi Chih is aware of this, he could agree that the ancestors were disturbed at the sight of others and use this as further support that human beings naturally care about others as they do themselves.

The Moists and Confucians seem to be presenting two sides of an issue that touches all cultures. You can find a good example of the conflict in the ancient Greek tragedy Antigone. Antigone’s two brothers fight each other to rule the state, and when one kills the other, he takes the throne and orders that his brother’s body not be buried (clearly, this would creep Mencius out). Antigone is torn between obeying her brother, the state, and burying her other brother as an obligation to her family members. Antigone argues in court that she must bury her brother, as one must serve one’s family over the state, and she is condemned to death. In one passage of Confucius’ Analects (13:18), Confucius sides with Antigone, arguing that a son who testifies against his father for stealing a sheep is wrong for not protecting his family from harm. We can assume that the punishment of the father would injure the family considerably.

Are the Moist and Confucian ideas of love incompatible? Is the love one has for others the origin of the love one has for those one is familiar with, or is the love one has for those one is familiar with the origin of the love one has for everyone? There is evidence that some during the Warring States period regarded them as complementary halves of the same truth. The Confucians such as Mencius argue as if the Moists wish to feed everyone a sandwich when they themselves want to eat a sandwich, which they argue is impractical. The Moists likewise argue as if the Confucians wish to feed only their families and have no obligation to anyone else. As a Moist, it is quite reasonable to believe that universal love allows one to take care of one’s own needs first, as everyone else should do for themselves, while keeping in mind that one must make the effort to ensure that all are cared for equally by society as a whole in addition to attending to one’s own needs. Likewise, as a Confucian, it is quite reasonable to care about everyone in society and the prosperity of society as a whole while taking care of one’s own needs and those of one’s family.

Just like the monks Hui Neng encountered arguing over the flag and the wind, the Moists start with universal love and assume it will extend to the partial, while the Confucians start with partial love and assume it will extend to the universal. Taking care of the self and those close to you and taking care of everyone are complimentary and mutually supportive. It is true, however, that starting with one or leaning towards the other can create great differences in doctrines and policy. For example, Mozi wanted limitations on extravagant funerals and mourning periods (traditionally three years) for family members, as these benefit one’s own family more than they contribute to the good of society as a whole. If money is spent on funerals and time on mourning periods, it can not be spent ensuring the prosperity of everyone. Confucians believe that one should provide decent funerals and mourning for one’s family members, as it is an exercise in devotion to those one shares one’s life with.

The Moists were known to be experts in both debate and warfare, and they excelled in both logic and military science, but for the purpose of self defense and defending the weak against the strong. Remember that the period of the Hundred Schools was also the Warring States Period, a time of instability when many who were weak were being abused and killed by local wars and bandits. Today, the Swiss embody this stance on war the best as they spend a decent amount on defense and bases from which they launch jets out of mountains but never go on the offensive, staying neutral in international matters.

Unfortunately for Mozi and the Moist schools, the unification of China was a time of great prosperity for aristocrats, artists, entertainers and merchants. Mozi’s arguments that everyone should share equally and do away with extravagant entertainment cut against all of these rising groups, a likely factor in the Han supporting Confucianism and Daoism, but not Moism. Mozi did believe that art and music were valuable, but denounced the great productions enjoyed by aristocrats and merchants, arguing that they should use the money to feed farmers in times of famine and orphans. While the Confucians and Daoists argue for similar benevolence, the Daoists in particular suggesting that it is better to feed the common people then become attached to luxury, Mozi’s focus on entertainment as a particular target did not win him or his later schools much patronage.

Additionally, Mozi’s insistence on retaining popular theism and folk beliefs did not win him much favor. The philosophical monism of the Confucians and Daoists, while clearly blended with popular theism and spiritualism in the traditions, caught on with rising cultures of scholarship and the new aristocrats who found the new monistic interpretations and discussions attractive at a time when scholarship and culture were progressing in leaps and bounds.

I gave you readings from the Mozi, selections from the chapters Universal Love, Against Offensive Warfare and Against the Confucians, but I will be lecturing on more than these sections. The Mozi text is often edited, as it has three versions of most of the chapters. Scholars believe that this was due to there being three major competing schools of Moism around 400 BCE, which would have been thriving in the time of Mencius as he debates with various Moists. Sometimes the text speaks as if from the mouth or brush of Mozi himself, while at other times quoting him in the third person (“Mozi said…”).

In the section Honoring the Worthy, Mozi argues that the way to lead a people to prosperity and out of poverty is to employ and promote the best people. Interestingly, Mozi later argues that it is improper to take better care of the worthy or to care for them more than the unworthy, and he claims that Confucians, who also believe in meritocracy, make this mistake. Mozi sites the example of the sage emperor Yao selecting Shun as his successor to show that this was the practice of the great ancient patriarchs.

In the section Identifying with One’s Superior, Mozi says that before there were laws and culture in prehistoric times, everyone had different views and the world was a brutal place without regard for family or anyone other than the self. Civilization occurred when people subjected themselves to rulers and their laws. This picture is identical to that of Xunzi as well as Hobbes, the British political philosopher of the 1600s. Mozi says, like Hobbes, that one must subject one’s own will and decisions to that of one’s superior, but unlike Hobbes and like Confucius, Mozi argues that if one’s superior is wrong they should be told by subordinates. The lowest of people should report all good and bad to their superiors, but then do what they are told by their superiors. Mozi argues that the Lord of Heaven, the highest god, will support the good and dethrone the bad, naturally creating a just society. In spite of the fact that Mozi believes in radical and nontraditional reforms (though Mozi argues that they were the ways of the sage kings), he is critical of Confucianism for supporting rebellions against unjust rulers.

There is a bit of a conflict here with his views in Against Offensive Warfare. Mozi argues that self-defense is always preferable to offense, and it would seem this includes mounting an offense against one’s own rulers. However, in order to answer those who say the ancient sage kings went to war, he makes a distinction between offensive warfare for gain and punishing an unjust ruler, which he says is what the sage kings did whenever they went to war. It seems that if you are a ruler it is alright to use war as punishment against a neighboring unjust ruler, but not if you are the subject of an unjust ruler.

In the section Universal Love, Mozi begins by stating that the good person seeks to promote what is good and reduce what is harmful (identical, again, to the Utilitarianism of John Stuart Mill). He argues that the greatest harm is powerful states and families attacking the weak states and families and the strong oppressing the weak. All this comes about not by love but by hate, not by universality (caring about the whole) but by partiality (caring about part of the whole as opposed to another part). Partiality must be, therefore, replaced with universality.

Mozi uses the example of using a flood to counter a flood (fighting water with water) or putting out a fire with another flame (fighting fire with fire). To fight partiality with partiality (such as fighting one army with another, each wanting exclusive control of a territory) will not work. The only way to defeat partiality is through universality, just as the way to fight fire is with water. If rulers and people saw other cities as they do their own, then they would not attack them but rather give to them and inspire the others to give back. While many in his time as well as today would be skeptical of the practicality of this, Mozi argues that it is not easy but it is the only practical solution to warfare and poverty. If everyone helps others with their talents, caring about others and receiving goods from society equally, it will create the most prosperous society.

Mozi argues that this can be put into practice or even he would be critical. We naturally trust the universal person with our family and possessions more than the partial person. He uses the example of a man going to war, who would trust his family to the universal rather than the partial man. Therefore, we naturally love and trust the universal ruler more than the particular ruler. He argues further that if one cares about one’s parents, caring about others as one cares about one’s parents would be the best way to take care of one’s parents, as others would care about one’s parents and provide for them as they do for themselves. Mozi mentions that critics have replied that universal love and a universal society is as impossible as picking up Mount Tai, the largest sacred mountain of China, and leaping over a river with it. Mozi responds that the ancient sage kings practiced universal love, proving it is possible. Whether or not the sage kings did love everyone equally, it may be problematic to insist that their subjects all joined them.

There is, however, a problem with this view that Mencius mentions: we do in fact see people naturally loving their own more than their neighbor, just as we do see people trusting partial rulers rather than universal ones. Mozi says there are no fools in the world like this, that everyone knows a universal person is more trustworthy than a partial person, but experience does show us otherwise. However, he argues that if the people saw rulers that fed and clothed everyone equally, there could be radical change in society within a single generation. He argues that King Ling liked slender waists, so his subjects all went on a one-meal-a-day diet within a single generation, that King Kou-Chien liked bravery, so his subjects became brave warriors within a single generation, and Duke Wen liked course clothes, so his subjects began to wear coarse clothes within a single generation. If people can change these ways within one generation, how much more would they benefit from universal love and care? While it would have problems, it is not necessarily impossible. Confucius did say that no one, including himself, is perfect.

In the section Against Offensive Warfare, Mozi says that everyone knows that it is wrong to steal from one’s neighbors, but that when it is called warfare, and a people steal from another people, it is praised. If it is true that killing one person is a crime, then killing a hundred is far more of a crime. People are truly confused about right and wrong if they consider warfare to be justice. Mozi argues this is like calling a large amount of black ‘white’, or calling a large amount of bitter ‘sweet’. Rulers unjustly use people as a beast uses its claws and teeth to attack other people, praising those they use this way. This causes people to lose soldiers who are needed for self-defense, who die not only from combat but from starvation and disease in times of war. It also causes the death of people, who are the ones who tend to the needs of spirits, hurting them as well in the process, a “Won’t somebody think of the spirits?” argument. Mozi argues that if people want a prosperous society, they would do better to flourish through peace than steal through war.

In the section The Will of Heaven, Mozi says that people can hide from their families in another house or their rulers in another land, but they cannot hide from Heaven (the way of things, or reality). If one does good, then one prospers. If one does evil, one perishes. The Will of Heaven, the way of things, is “like a compass to a wheelwright or a square to a carpenter”, giving a model for matching the curved and the straight.

In the section Against Confucians, Mozi argues that the Confucians are wrong about degrees and gradations of love based on one’s relationship to one’s other. Mozi argues that it is wrong to love one’s family and state more than other families and states. He argues that both Confucius and Confucians are hypocritical and often pay more attention to matters of ritual than to the deeper underlying problems of society. He attacks Confucian practices of mourning, weddings, and fatalism and says they produce contradictions and hypocrisy. He argues that the ancient ways were once new ways, so why should we honor the ancient heroes and sage kings for invention, innovation and change by sticking to the old ways? Mozi believes that the Confucians are drawn into caring about the trivial while at other times supporting the substantial revolution that society requires. At times, they believe in silence and deference to authority even when it is wrong, but at other times they endorse rebellion. It seems that Mozi sees the Confucians as destroyers of tradition, the same way the Confucians see the Moists.

The life of Laozi

Despite his historical importance, Laozi remains an obscure figure. The principal source of information about his life is a biography in the Shiji (“Records of the Historian”) by Sima Qian. This historian, who wrote in about 100 bce , had little solid information concerning the philosopher. He says that Laozi was a native of Quren, a village in the district of Hu in the state of Chu, which corresponds to the modern Luyi in the eastern part of Henan province. His family name was Li, his proper name Er, his appellation Dan. He was appointed to the office of shi at the royal court of the Zhou dynasty (c. 1046–256 bce ). Shi today means “historian,” but in ancient China the shi were scholars specializing in matters such as astrology and divination and were in charge of sacred books.

After noting the civil status of Laozi, the historian proceeds to relate a celebrated but questionable meeting of the old Daoist with the younger Confucius (551–479 bce ). The story has been much discussed by the scholars it is mentioned elsewhere, but the sources are so inconsistent and contradictory that the meeting seems a mere legend. During the supposed interview, Laozi blamed Confucius for his pride and ambition, and Confucius was so impressed with Laozi that he compared him to a dragon that rises to the sky, riding on the winds and clouds.

No less legendary is a voyage of Laozi to the west. Realizing that the Zhou dynasty was on the decline, the philosopher departed and came to the Xiangu pass, which was the entrance to the state of Qin. Yinxi, the legendary guardian of the pass (guanling), begged him to write a book for him. Thereupon, Laozi wrote a book in two sections of 5,000 characters, in which he set down his ideas about the Dao (literally “Way”) and the de (its “virtue”): the Daodejing. Then he left, and “nobody knows what has become of him,” says Sima Qian.

After the account of the journey of Laozi and of the redaction of the book, Sima Qian alludes to other persons with whom Laozi was sometimes identified. One was Lao Laizi, a Daoist contemporary of Confucius another was a great astrologer named Dan. Sima Qian adds, “Maybe Laozi has lived one hundred and fifty years, some say more than two hundred years.” Since the ancient Chinese believed that superior men could live very long, it is natural that the Daoists credited their master with an uncommon longevity, but this is perhaps a rather late tradition because Zhuangzi, the Daoist sage of the 4th century bce , still speaks of the death of Laozi without emphasizing an unusual longevity.

To explain why the life of Laozi is so shrouded in obscurity, Sima Qian says that he was a gentleman recluse whose doctrine consisted in nonaction, the cultivation of a state of inner calm, and purity of mind. Indeed, throughout the whole history of China, there have always been recluses who shunned worldly life. The author (or authors) of the Daodejing was probably a person of this kind who left no trace of his life.

The question of whether there was a historical Laozi has been raised by many scholars, but it is rather an idle one. The Daodejing, as we have it, cannot be the work of a single author some of its sayings may date from the time of Confucius others are certainly later and a version of the text has been recovered in an archaeological find at Guodian that dates to before 300 bce . Owing to these facts, some scholars have assigned the authorship of the Daodejing to the astrologer Dan while others, giving credit to a genealogy of the descendants of the philosopher, which is related in the biography by Sima Qian, try to place the life of Lao Dan at the end of the 4th century bce . But this genealogy can hardly be considered as historical. It proves only that at the time of Sima Qian a certain Li family (see above) pretended to be descended from the Daoist sage it does not give a basis for ascertaining the existence of the latter. The name Laozi seems to represent a certain type of sage rather than an individual.

Philosopher for the people

According to Mencius, the ruler was to provide for the welfare of the people in two respects: material conditions for their livelihood and moral and educational guidance for their edification. Mencius had worked out a definite program to attain economic sufficiency for the common people. He also advocated light taxes, free trade, conservation of natural resources, welfare measures for the old and disadvantaged, and more nearly equal sharing of wealth. It was his fundamental belief that “only when the people had a steady livelihood would they have a steady heart.”

While Mencius patiently exhorted the princes to cultivate the way of moral power and to forsake the way of force and intrigue, he also reminded them emphatically of the responsibility that came to them with the mandate of Heaven to govern for the good of the people. With unusual courage, Mencius declared: “The people are the most important element in a nation the spirits of the land and grain come next the sovereign counts for the least.” He also quoted for all to hear from the Shujing (“Classic of History”), one of the Five Classics of Confucianism, the saying “Heaven sees as the people see Heaven hears as the people hear.” The outspoken sympathies of Mencius made him a champion of the common people and an advocate of democratic principles in government.

Mencius’ sojourn covered several states, but nowhere did he find a prince willing to put his lofty principles of government into practice. His sense of disappointment grew with the years and finally brought him back to his native state of Zou, where he devoted the remaining years of his life to the instruction of his pupils. The work Mencius is a collection of the records of the doings and sayings of the master by his disciples, arranged in seven books with two parts to each book.

The Life of Diogenes of Sinope in Diogenes Laertius

Diogenes of Sinope (c. 404-323 BCE) was a Greek Cynic philosopher best known for holding a lantern to the faces of the citizens of Athens claiming he was searching for an honest man. He was most likely a student of the philosopher Antisthenes (445-365 BCE) and, in the words of Plato (allegedly), was “A Socrates gone mad.” He was driven into exile from his native city of Sinope and settled in Athens. He had written to a friend to rent him a small house there but, when this friend failed to find a place, Diogenes threw his cloak into a large, empty, wine cask outside the temple of Cybele near the Agora and called it home. He lived in the cask his entire time in Athens. He became interested in the teachings of Antisthenes and asked to be admitted to his school. Antisthenes at first refused him as a student, even beating him with his staff to drive him away, but eventually was worn down by his persistence. Diogenes would take his teacher's beliefs to an extreme degree. Like Antisthenes, Diogenes believed in self-control, the importance of personal excellence in one's behavior (in Greek, arete, usually translated as "virtue"), and the rejection of all that was considered unnecessary in life such as personal possessions and social status. He was so ardent in his beliefs that he lived them very publicly in the market place of Athens. He owned nothing, lived on the streets of Athens, and seems to have subsisted on the charity of others. He owned a cup which served also as a bowl for food but threw it away when he saw a boy drinking water from his hands and eating food off a piece of bread, realizing one did not even need a bowl for sustenance.

For Diogenes, a reasonable life is one lived in accordance with nature and with one's natural inclinations. To be true to oneself, then, no matter how "mad' one may appear, was to pursue a life worth living. Whether true or another fable, the tale of Diogenes' capture by pirates and his being sold into slavery in Corinth bears testimony to the strength of his convictions. When asked what talent he had he replied, “That of governing men” and then demanded to be sold to Xeniades saying, “Sell me to that man for he wants a master.” Even though he was a slave at this point, and in no position to demand anything, he believed so completely in himself that others felt compelled to listen to him and do what he said. Xeniades, for example, placed Diogenes in charge of tutoring his young sons and, in time, the philosopher became part of the family. He lived in Corinth with Xeniades' family for the rest of his life and died there at the age of ninety. His cause of death has been given as either severe food poisoning from eating a raw ox's foot, rabies from a dog bite, or suicide by holding his breath.


Much of what is known about his life in Athens and Corinth comes from the work The Lives and Opinions of Eminent Philosophers by Diogenes Laertius (3rd century CE). Some of the most amusing anecdotes are those relating his continual feud with Plato whom he considered a pretentious, prattling, snob. When Plato defined a human being as a "featherless biped", Diogenes plucked a chicken and brought it to Plato's Academy. He released it into one of the classrooms, saying, "Behold - Plato's human being." Plato was then forced to add "with broad, flat, nails" to his definition. The following is The Life of Diogenes from Laertius' work. The translation is by C.D. Yonge.

I. DIOGENES was a native of Sinope, the son of Tresius, a money-changer. And Diocles says that he was forced to flee from his native city, as his father kept the public bank there, and had adulterated the coinage. But Eubulides, in his essay on Diogenes, says, that it was Diogenes himself who did this, and that he was banished with his father. And, indeed, he himself, in his Perdalus, says of himself that he had adulterated the public money. Others say that he was one of the curators, and was persuaded by the artisans employed, and that he went to Delphi, or else to the oracle at Delos, and there consulted Apollo as to whether he should do what people were trying to persuade him to do and that, as the God gave him permission to do so, Diogenes, not comprehending that the God meant that he might change the political customs1 of his country if he could, adulterated the coinage and being detected, was banished, as some people say, but as other accounts have it, took the alarm and fled away of his own accord. Some again, say that he adulterated the money which he had received from his father and that his father was thrown into prison and died there but that Diogenes escaped and went to Delphi, and asked, not whether he might tamper with the coinage, but what he could do to become very celebrated, and that in consequence he received the oracular answer which I have mentioned.


II. And when he came to Athens he attached himself to Antisthenes but as he repelled him, because he admitted no one he at last forced his way to him by his pertinacity. And once, when he raised his stick at him, he put his head under it, and said, "Strike, for you will not find any stick hard enough to drive me away as long as you continue to speak." And from this time forth he was one of his pupils and being an exile, he naturally betook himself to a simple mode of life.

III. And when, as Theophrastus tells us, in his Megaric Philosopher, he saw a mouse running about and not seeking for a bed, nor taking care to keep in the dark, nor looking for any of those things which appear enjoyable to such an animal, he found a remedy for his own poverty. He was, according to the account of some people, the first person who doubled up his cloak out of necessity, and who slept in it and who carried a wallet, in which he kept his food and who used whatever place was near for all sorts of purposes, eating, and sleeping, and conversing in it. In reference to which habit he used to say, pointing to the Colonnade of Jupiter, and to the Public Magazine, "that the Athenians had built him places to live in." Being attacked with illness, he supported himself with a staff and after that he carried it continually, not indeed in the city, but whenever he was walking in the roads, together with his wallet, as Olympiodorus, the chief man of the Athenians tells us and Polymeter, the orator, and Lysanias, the son of Aeschorion, tell the same story.

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When he had written to some one to look out and get ready a small house for him, as he delayed to do it, he took a cask which he found in the Temple of Cybele, for his house, as he himself tells us in his letters. And during the summer he used to roll himself in the warm sand, but in winter he would embrace statues all covered with snow, practising himself, on every occasion, to endure anything.

IV. He was very violent in expressing his haughty disdain of others. He said that the scholê (school) of Euclides was cholê (gall). And he used to call Plato's diatribê (discussions) katatribê (disguise). It was also a saying of his that the Dionysian games were a great marvel to fools and that the demagogues were the ministers of the multitude. He used likewise to say, "that when in the course of his life he beheld pilots, and physicians, and philosophers, he thought man the wisest of all animals but when again he beheld interpreters of dreams, and soothsayers, and those who listened to them, and men puffed up with glory or riches, then he thought that there was not a more foolish animal than man." Another of his sayings was, "that he thought a man ought oftener to provide himself with a reason than with a halter." On one occasion, when he noticed Plato at a very costly entertainment tasting some olives, he said, "O you wise man! why, after having sailed to Sicily for the sake of such a feast, do you not now enjoy what you have before you?" And Plato replied, "By the Gods, Diogenes, while I was there I ate olives and all such things a great deal." Diogenes rejoined, "What then did you want to sail to Syracuse for? Did not Attica at that time produce any olives?" But Favorinus, in his Universal History, tells this story of Aristippus. At another time he was eating dried figs, when Plato met him, and he said to him, "You may have a share of these" and as he took some and ate them, he said, "I said that you might have a share of them, not that you might eat them all." On one occasion Plato had invited some friends who had come to him from Dionysius to a banquet, and Diogenes trampled on his carpets, and said, "Thus I trample on the empty pride of Plato" and Plato made him answer, "How much arrogance are you displaying, O Diogenes! when you think that you are not arrogant at all." But, as others tell the story, Diogenes said, "Thus I trample on the pride of Plato" and that Plato rejoined, "With quite as much pride yourself, O Diogenes." Sotion too, in his fourth book, states, that the Cynic made the following speech to Plato: Diogenes once asked him for some wine, and then for some dried figs so he sent him an entire jar full and Diogenes said to him, "Will you, if you are asked how many two and two make, answer twenty? In this way, you neither give with any reference to what you are asked for, nor do you answer with reference to the question put to you." He used also to ridicule him as an interminable talker. When he was asked where in Greece he saw virtuous men "Men," said he, "nowhere but I see good boys in Lacedaemon." On one occasion, when no one came to listen to him while he was discoursing seriously, he began to whistle. And then when people flocked round him, he reproached them for coming with eagerness to folly, but being lazy and indifferent about good things. One of his frequent sayings was, "That men contended with one another in punching and kicking, but that no one showed any emulation in the pursuit of virtue." He used to express his astonishment at the grammarians for being desirous to learn everything about the misfortunes of Ulysses, and being ignorant of their own. He used also to say, "That the musicians fitted the strings to the lyre properly, but left all the habits of their soul ill-arranged." And, "That mathematicians kept their eyes fixed on the sun and moon, and overlooked what was under their feet." "That orators were anxious to speak justly, but not at all about acting so." Also, "That misers blamed money, but were preposterously fond of it." He often condemned those who praise the just for being superior to money, but who at the same time are eager themselves for great riches. He was also very indignant at seeing men sacrifice to the Gods to procure good health, and yet at the sacrifice eating in a manner injurious to health. He often expressed his surprise at slaves, who, seeing their masters eating in a gluttonous manner, still do not themselves lay hands on any of the eatables. He would frequently praise those who were about to marry, and yet did not marry or who were about to take a voyage, and yet did not take a voyage or who were about to engage in affairs of state, and did not do so and those who were about to rear children, yet did not rear any and those who were preparing to take up their abode with princes, and yet did not take it up. One of his sayings was, "That one ought to hold out one's hand to a friend without closing the fingers."


Hermippus, in his Sale of Diogenes, says that he was taken prisoner and put up to be sold, and asked what he could do and he answered, "Govern men." And so he bade the crier "give notice that if any one wants to purchase a master, there is one here for him." When he was ordered not to sit down "It makes no difference," said he, "for fish are sold, be where they may." He used to say, that he wondered at men always ringing a dish or jar before buying it, but being content to judge of a man by his look alone. When Xeniades bought him, he said to him that he ought to obey him even though he was his slave for that a physician or a pilot would find men to obey them even though they might be slaves.

V. And Eubulus says, in his essay entitled, The Sale of Diogenes, that he taught the children of Xeniades, after their other lessons, to ride, and shoot, and sling, and dart. And then in the Gymnasium he did not permit the trainer to exercise them after the fashion of athletes, but exercised them himself to just the degree sufficient to give them a good colour and good health. And the boys retained in their memory many sentences of poets and prose writers, and of Diogenes himself and he used to give them a concise statement of everything in order to strengthen their memory and at home he used to teach them to wait upon themselves, contenting themselves with plain food, and drinking water. And he accustomed them to cut their hair close, and to eschew ornament, and to go without tunics or shoes, and to keep silent, looking at nothing except themselves as they walked along. He used, also to take them out hunting and they paid the greatest attention and respect to Diogenes himself, and spoke well of him to their parents.

VI. And the same author affirms, that he grew old in the household of Xeniades, and that when he died he was buried by his sons. And that while he was living with him, Xeniades once asked him how he should bury him and he said, "On my face" and when he was asked why, he said, "Because, in a little while, everything will be turned upside down." And he said this because the Macedonians were already attaining power, and becoming a mighty people from having been very inconsiderable. Once, when a man had conducted him into a magnificent house, and had told him that he must not spit, after hawking a little, he spit in his face, saying that he could not find a worse place. But some tell this story of Aristippus. Once, he called out, "Holloa, men." And when some people gathered round him in consequence he drove them away with his stick, saying, "I called men, and not dregs." This anecdote I have derived from Hecaton, in the first book of his Apophthegms. They also relate that Alexander said that if he had not been Alexander, he should have liked to be Diogenes. He used to call anapêroi (cripples), not those who were dumb and blind, but those who had no wallet (pêra). On one occasion he went half shaved into an entertainment of young men, as Metrocles tells us in his Apophthegms, and so was beaten by them. And afterwards he wrote the names of all those who had beaten him on a white tablet, and went about with the tablet round his neck, so as to expose them to insult, as they were generally condemned and reproached for their conduct.


He used to say that he was the hound of those who were praised but that none of those who praised them dared to go out hunting with him. A man once said to him, "I conquered men at the Pythian games:" on which he said, "I conquer men, but you only conquer slaves." When some people said to him, "You are an old man, and should rest for the remainder of your life" "Why so?" replied be, "suppose I had run a long distance, ought I to stop when I was near the end, and not rather press on?" Once, when he was invited to a banquet, he said that he would not come: for that the day before no one had thanked him for coming. He used to go bare foot through the snow, and to do a number of other things which have been already mentioned. Once he attempted to eat raw meat, but he could not digest it. On one occasion he found Demosthenes, the orator, dining in an inn and as he was slipping away, he said to him, "You will now be ever so much more in an inn."2 Once, when some strangers wished to see Demosthenes, he stretched out his middle finger, and said, "This is the great demagogue of the Athenian people." When some one had dropped a loaf, and was ashamed to pick it up again, he, wishing to give him a lesson, tied a cord round the neck of a bottle and dragged it all through the Ceramicus. He used to say, that he imitated the teachers of choruses, for that they spoke too loud in order that the rest might catch the proper tone. Another of his sayings, was that most men were within a finger's breadth of being mad. If, then, any one were to walk along, stretching out his middle finger, he will seem to be mad but if he puts out his fore finger, he will not be thought so. Another of his sayings was, that things of great value were often sold for nothing, and vice versa. Accordingly, that a statue would fetch three thousand drachmas, and a bushel of meal only two obols and when Xeniades had bought him, he said to him, "Come, do what you are ordered to." And when he said-

"The streams of sacred rivers now
Run backwards to their source!"

"Suppose," rejoined Diogenes, "you had been sick, and had bought a physician, could you refuse to be guided by him, and tell him


"The streams of sacred rivers now
Run backwards to their source?"

Once a man came to him, and wished to study philosophy as his pupil and he gave him a saperda3 and made him follow him. And as he from shame threw it away and departed, he soon afterwards met him and, laughing, said to him, "A saperda has dissolved your friendship for me." But Diocles tells this story in the following manner that when some one said to him, "Give me a commission, Diogenes," he carried him off, and gave him a halfpenny worth of cheese to carry. And as he refused to carry it, "See," said Diogenes, "a halfpenny worth of cheese has broken off our friendship."

On one occasion he saw a child drinking out of its hands, and so he threw away the cup which belonged to his wallet, saying, "That child has beaten me in simplicity." He also threw away his spoon, after seeing a boy, when he had broken his vessel, take up his lentils with a crust of bread. And he used to argue thus, - "Everything belongs to the gods and wise men are the friends of the gods. All things are in common among friends therefore everything belongs to wise men." Once he saw a woman falling down before the Gods in an unbecoming attitude he, wishing to cure her of her superstition, as Zoilus of Perga tells us, came up to her, and said, "Are you not afraid, O woman, to be in such an indecent attitude, when some God may be behind you, for every place is full of him?" He consecrated a man to Aesculapius, who was to run up and beat all these who prostrated themselves with their faces to the ground and he was in the habit of saying that the tragic curse had come upon him, for that he was

Houseless and citiless, a piteous exile
From his dear native land a wandering beggar,
Scraping a pittance poor from day to day.

And another of his sayings was that he opposed confidence to fortune, nature to law, and reason to suffering. Once, while he was sitting in the sun in the Craneum, Alexander was standing by, and said to him, "Ask any favour you choose of me." And he replied, "Cease to shade me from the sun." On one occasion a man was reading some long passages, and when he came to the end of the book and showed that there was nothing more written, "Be of good cheer, my friends," exclaimed Diogenes, "I see land." A man once proved to him syllogistically that he had horns, so he put his hand to his forehead and said, "I do not see them." And in a similar manner he replied to one who had been asserting that there was no such thing as motion, by getting up and walking away. When a man was talking about the heavenly bodies and meteors, "Pray how many days," said he to him, "is it since you came down from heaven?" A profligate eunuch had written on his house, "Let no evil thing enter in." "Where," said Diogenes, "is the master of the house going?" After having anointed his feet with perfume, he said that the ointment from his head mounted up to heaven, and that from his feet up to his nose. When the Athenians entreated him to be initiated in the Eleusinian mysteries, and said that in the shades below the initiated had the best seats "It will," he replied, " be an absurd thing if Aegesilaus and Epaminondas are to live in the mud, and some miserable wretches, who have been initiated, are to be in the islands of the blest." Some mice crept up to his table, and he said, "See, even Diogenes maintains his favourites." Once, when he was leaving the bath, and a man asked him whether many men were bathing, he said, "No" but when a number of people came out, he confessed that there were a great many. When Plato called him a dog, he said, "Undoubtedly, for I have come back to those who sold me."

Plato defined man thus: "Man is a two-footed, featherless animal" and was much praised for the definition so Diogenes plucked a cock and brought it into his school, and said, "This is Plato's man." On which account this addition was made to the definition, "With broad flat nails." A man once asked him what was the proper time for supper, and he made answer, "If you are a rich man, whenever you please and if you are a poor man, whenever you can." When he was at Megara he saw some sheep carefully covered over with skins, and the children running about naked and so he said, "It is better at Megara to be a man's ram, than his son." A man once struck him with a beam, and then said, "Take care." "What," said he, "are you going to strike me again?" He used to say that the demagogues were the servants of the people and garlands the blossoms of glory. Having lighted a candle in the day time, he said, "I am looking for a man." On one occasion he stood under a fountain, and as the bystanders were pitying him, Plato, who was present, said to them, "If you wish really to show your pity for him, come away" intimating that he was only acting thus out of a desire for notoriety. Once, when a man had struck him with his fist, he said, "O Hercules, what a strange thing that, I should be walking about with a helmet on without knowing it!"

When Midias struck him with his fist and said, "There are three thousand drachmas for you" the next day Diogenes took the cestus of a boxer and beat him soundly, and said, "There are three thousand drachmas for you."4 When Lysias, the drug-seller, asked him whether he thought that there were any Gods: "How," said he, "can I help thinking so, when I consider you to be hated by them?" but some attribute this reply to Theodorus. Once he saw a man purifying himself by washing, and said to him, "Oh, wretched man, do not you know that as you cannot wash away blunders in grammar by purification, so, too, you can no more efface the errors of a life in that same manner?"

He used to say that men were wrong for complaining of fortune for that they ask of the Gods what appear to be good things, not what are really so. And to those who were alarmed at dreams he said, that they did not regard what they do while they are awake but make a great fuss about what they fancy they see while they are asleep. Once, at the Olympic games when the herald proclaimed "Dioxippus is the conqueror of men" he said, "He is the conqueror of slaves, I am the conqueror of men."

He was greatly beloved by the Athenians accordingly, when a youth had broken his cask they beat him, and gave Diogenes another. And Dionysius the Stoic, says that after the battle of Chaeronea he was taken prisoner and brought to Philip and being asked who he was replied, "A spy, to spy upon your insatiability." And Philip marvelled at him and let him go. Once, when Alexander had sent a letter to Athens to Antipater, by the hands of a man named Athlias, he, being present, said, "Athlias from Athlius, by means of Athlias to Athlius.5 When Perdiccas threatened that he would put him to death if he did not come to him, he replied, "That is nothing strange, for a scorpion or a tarantula could do as much: you had better threaten me that, if I kept away, you should be very happy." He used constantly to repeat with emphasis that an easy life had been given to man by the Gods, but that it had been overlaid by their seeking for honey, cheese-cakes, and unguents, and things of that sort. On which account he said to a man, who had his shoes put on by his servant, "You are not thoroughly happy, unless he also wipes your nose for you and he will do this, if you are crippled in your hands." On one occasion, when he had seen the hieromnemones6 leading off one of the stewards who had stolen a goblet, he said, "The great thieves are carrying off the little thief." At another time, seeing a young man throwing stones at a cross, he said, "Well done, you will be sure to reach the mark." Once, too, some boys got round him and said, "We are taking care that you do not bite us" but he said, "Be of good cheer, my boys, a dog does not eat beef." He saw a man giving himself airs because he was clad in a lion's skin, and said to him, "Do not go on disgracing the garb of nature." When people were speaking of the happiness of Callisthenes, and saying what splendid treatment he received from Alexander, he replied, "The man then is wretched, for he is forced to breakfast and dine whenever Alexander chooses." When he was in want of money, he said that he reclaimed it from his friends and did not beg for it.

On one occasion he was working with his hands in the market-place, and said, "I wish I could rub my stomach in the same way, and so avoid hunger." When he saw a young man going with some satraps to supper, he dragged him away and led him off to his relations, and bade them take care of him. He was once addressed by a youth beautifully adorned, who asked him some question and he refused to give him any answer, till he satisfied him whether he was a man or a woman. And on one occasion, when a youth was playing the cottabus in the bath, he said to him, "The better you do it, the worse you do it." Once at a banquet, some of the guests threw him bones, as if he had been a dog so he, as he went away, put up his leg against them as if he had been a dog in reality. He used to call the orators, and all those who speak for fame triganthrôpoi (thrice men), instead of trigathloi (thrice miserable). He said that a rich but ignorant man, was like a sheep with a golden fleece. When he saw a notice on the house of a profligate man, "To be sold." "I knew," said he, "that you who are so incessantly drunk, would soon vomit up your owner." To a young man who was complaining of the number of people who sought his acquaintance, he said, "Do not make such a parade of your vanity."

Having been in a very dirty bath, he said, "I wonder where the people, who bathe here, clean themselves." When all the company was blaming an indifferent harp-player, he alone praised him and being asked why he did so, he said, "Because, though he is such as he is, he plays the harp and does not steal." He saluted a harp player who was always left alone by his hearers, with, "Good morning, cock" and when the man asked him, "Why so?" he said, "Because you, when you sing, make every one get up." When a young man was one day making a display of himself, he, having filled the bosom of his robe with lupins, began to eat them and when the multitude looked at him, he said, "that he marvelled at their leaving the young man to look at him." And when a man, who was very superstitious, said to him, "With one blow I will break your head" "And I," he replied, "with one sneeze will make you tremble." When Hegesias entreated him to lend him one of his books, he said, "You are a silly fellow, Hegesias, for you will not take painted figs, but real ones and yet you overlook the genuine practice of virtue, and seek for what is merely written." A man once reproached him with his banishment, and his answer was, "You wretched man, that is what made me a philosopher." And when, on another occasion, some one said to him, "The people of Sinope condemned you to banishment," he replied, "And I condemned them to remain where they were." Once he saw a man who had been victor at the Olympic games, feeding (nemonta) sheep, and he said to him, "You have soon come across my friend from the Olympic games, to the Nemean." When he was asked why athletes are insensible to pain, he said, "Because they are built up of pork and beef."

He once asked for a statue and being questioned as to his reason for doing so, he said, "I am practising disappointment." Once he was begging of some one (for he did this at first out of actual want), he said, "If you have given to any one else, give also to me and if you have never given to any one, then begin with me." On one occasion, he was asked by the tyrant, "What sort of brass was the best, for a statue?" and he replied, "That of which the statues of Harmodius and Aristogiton are made." When he was asked how Dionysius treats his friends, he said, "Like bags those which are full he hangs up, and those which are empty he throws away." A man who was lately married put an inscription on his house, "Hercules Callinicus, the son of Jupiter, lives here let no evil enter." And so Diogenes wrote in addition, "An alliance is made after the war is over." He used to say that covetousness was the metropolis of all evils. Seeing on one occasion a profligate man in an inn eating olives, he said, "If you had dined thus, you would not have supped thus." One of his apophthegms was, that good men were the images of the Gods another, that love was the business of those who had nothing to do. When he was asked what was miserable in life, he answered, "An indigent old man." And when the question was put to him, what beast inflicts the worst bite, he said, "Of wild beasts the sycophant, and of tame animals the flatterer."

On one occasion he saw two Centaurs very badly painted he said, "Which of the two is the worst?"7 He used to say that a speech, the object of which was solely to please, was a honeyed halter. He called the belly, the Charybdis of life. Having heard once that Didymon the adulterer, had been caught in the fact, he said, "He deserves to be hung by his name."8 When the question was put to him, why gold is of a pale colour, he said, "Because it has so many people plotting against it." When he saw a woman in a litter, he said, "The cage is not suited to the animal." And seeing a runaway slave sitting on a well, he said, "My boy, take care you do not fall in." Another time, he saw a little boy who was a stealer of clothes from the baths, and said, "Are you going for unguents, (aleimmation), or for other garments (all' himation). Seeing some women hanging on olive trees, he said, "I wish every tree bore similar fruit." At another time, he saw a clothes' stealer, and addressed him thus:

What moves thee, say, when sleep has clos'd the sight,
To roam the silent fields in dead of night?
Art thou some wretch by hopes of plunder led,
Through heaps of carnage to despoil the dead.9

When he was asked whether he had any girl or boy to wait on him, he said, "No." And as his questioner asked further, "If then you die, who will bury you?" He replied, "Whoever wants my house." Seeing a handsome youth sleeping without any protection, he nudged him, and said, "Wake up:

Mix'd with the vulgar shall thy fate be found,
Pierc'd in the back, a vile dishonest wound."10

And he addressed a man who was buying delicacies at a great expense:

Not long, my son, will you on earth remain,
If such your dealings.11

When Plato was discoursing about his "ideas," and using the nouns "tableness" and "cupness" "I, O Plato!" interrupted Diogenes, "see a table and a cup, but I see no tableness or cupness." Plato made answer, "That is natural enough, for you have eyes, by which a cup and a table are contemplated but you have not intellect, by which tableness and cupness are seen."

On one occasion, he was asked by a certain person, "What sort of a man, O Diogenes, do you think Socrates?" and he said, "A madman." Another time, the question was put to him, when a man ought to marry? and his reply was, "Young men ought not to marry yet, and old men never ought to marry at all." When asked what he would take to let a man give him a blow on the head?" he replied, "A helmet." Seeing a youth smartening himself up very carefully, he said to him, "If you are doing that for men, you are miserable and if for women, you are profligate." Once he saw a youth blushing, and addressed him, "Courage, my boy, that is the complexion of virtue." Having once listened to two lawyers, he condemned them both saying, "That the one had stolen the thing in question, and that the other had not lost it." When asked what wine he liked to drink, he said, "That which belongs to another," A man said to him one day, "Many people laugh at you." "But I," he replied, "am not laughed down." When a man said to him, that it was a bad thing to live "Not to live," said he, "but to live badly." When some people were advising him to make search for a slave who had run away," he said, "It would be a very absurd thing for Manes to be able to live without Diogenes, but for Diogenes not to be able to live without Manes." When he was dining on olives, a cheese-cake was brought in, on which he threw the olive away, saying:

Keep well aloof, O stranger, from all tyrants.12

He drove the olive off (mastixen d' elaan).13

When he was asked what sort of a dog he was, he replied, "When hungry, I am a dog of Melita when satisfied, a Molossian a sort which most of those who praise, do not like to take out hunting with them because of the labour of keeping up with them and in like manner, you cannot associate with me, from fear of the pain I give you." The question was put to him, whether wise men ate cheese-cakes, and he replied, "They eat everything, just as the rest of mankind." When asked why people give to beggars and not to philosophers, he said, "Because they think it possible that they themselves may become lame and blind, but they do not expect ever to turn out philosophers." He once begged of a covetous man, and as he was slow to give, he said, "Man, I am asking you for something to maintain me (eis trophên) and not to bury me (eis taphên)." When some one reproached him for having tampered with the coinage, he said, "There was a time when I was such a person as you are now but there never was when you were such as I am now, and never will be." And to another person who reproached him on the same grounds, he said, "There were times when I did what I did not wish to, but that is not the case now." When he went to Myndus, he saw some very large gates, but the city was a small one, and so he said "Oh men of Myndus, shut your gates, lest your city should steal out." On one occasion, he saw a man who had been detected stealing purple, and so he said

A purple death, and mighty fate o'ertook him.14

When Craterus entreated him to come and visit him, he said, "I would rather lick up salt at Athens, than enjoy a luxurious table with Craterus." On one occasion, he met Anaximenes, the orator, who was a fat man, and thus accosted him" Pray give us, who are poor, some of your belly for by so doing you will be relieved yourself, and you will assist us." And once, when he was discussing some point, Diogenes held up a piece of salt fish, and drew off the attention of his hearers and as Anaximenes was indignant at this, he said, "See, one pennyworth of salt fish has put an end to the lecture of Anaximenes." Being once reproached for eating in the market-place, he made answer, "I did, for it was in the market-place that I was hungry." Some authors also attribute the following repartee to him. Plato saw him washing vegetables, and so, coming up to him, he quietly accosted him thus, "If you had paid court to Dionysius you would not have been washing vegetables." "And," he replied, with equal quietness, "if you had washed vegetables, you would never have paid court to Dionysius." When a man said to him once, "Most people laugh at you" "And very likely," he replied, "the asses laugh at them but they do not regard the asses, neither do I regard them." Once he saw a youth studying philosophy, and said to him, "Well done inasmuch as you are leading those who admire your person to contemplate the beauty of your mind."

A certain person was admiring the offerings in the temple at Samothrace,15 and he said to him, "They would have been much more numerous, if those who were lost had offered them instead of those who were saved" but some attribute this speech to Diagoras the Thelian. Once he saw a handsome youth going to a banquet, and said to him, "You will come back worse (cheirôn)" and when he the next day after the banquet said to him, "I have left the banquet, and was no worse for it" he replied, "You were not Chiron, but Eurytion."16 He was begging once of a very ill-tempered man, and as he said to him, "If you can persuade me, I will give you something" he replied, "If I could persuade you, I would beg you to hang yourself." He was on one occasion returning from Lacedaemon to Athens and when some one asked him, "Whither are you going, and whence do you come?" he said, "I am going from the men's apartments to the women's." Another time he was returning from the Olympic games, and when some one asked him whether there had been a great multitude there, he said, "A great multitude, but very few men." He used to say that debauched men resembled figs growing on a precipice the fruit of which is not tasted by men, but devoured by crows and vultures. When Phryne had dedicated a golden statue of Venus at Delphi, he wrote upon it, "From the profligacy of the Greeks."

Once Alexander the Great came and stood by him, and said, "I am Alexander, the great king." " And I," said he, "am Diogenes the dog." And when he was asked to what actions of his it was owing that he was called a dog, he said, "Because I fawn upon those who give me anything, and bark at those who give me nothing, and bite the rogues." On one occasion he was gathering some of the fruit of a fig-tree, and when the man who was guarding it told him a man hung himself on this tree the other day, "I, then," said he, "will now purify it." Once he saw a man who had been a conqueror at the Olympic games looking very often at a courtesan "Look " said he, "at that warlike ram, who is taken prisoner by the first girl he meets." One of his sayings was, that good-looking courtesans were like poisoned mead.

On one occasion he was eating his dinner in the marketplace, and the bystanders kept constantly calling out "Dog" but he said, "It is you who are the dogs, who stand around me while I am at dinner." When two effeminate fellows were getting out of his way, he said, "Do not be afraid, a dog does not eat beetroot." Being once asked about a debauched boy, as to what country he came from, he said, "He is a Tegean."17 Seeing an unskilful wrestler professing to heal a man he said, "What are you about, are you in hopes now to overthrow those who formerly conquered you?" On one occasion he saw the son of a courtesan throwing a stone at a crowd, and said to him, "Take care, lest you hit your father." When a boy showed him a sword that he had received from one to whom he had done some discreditable service, he told him, "The sword is a good sword, but the handle is infamous." And when some people were praising a man who had given him something, he said to then, "And do not you praise me who was worthy to receive it?" He was asked by some one to give him back his cloak but he replied, "If you gave it me, it is mine and if you only lent it me, I am using it." A supposititious son (hupoleimaios) of somebody once said to him, that he had gold in his cloak "No doubt,' said he, "that is the very reason why I sleep with it under my head (hupobeblêmenos)." When he was asked what advantage he had derived from philosophy, he replied, "If no other, at least this, that I am prepared for every kind of fortune." The question was put to him what countryman he was, and he replied, "A Citizen of the world" (kosmopolitês). Some men were sacrificing to the Gods to prevail on them to send them sons, and he said, "And do you not sacrifice to procure sons of a particular character?" Once he was asking the president of a society for a contribution,18 and said to him:

"Spoil all the rest, but keep your hands from Hector."

He used to say that courtesans were the queens of kings for that they asked them for whatever they chose. When the Athenians had voted that Alexander was Bacchus, he said to them, "Vote, too, that I am Serapis." When a man reproached him for going into unclean places, he said, "The sun too penetrates into privies, but is not polluted by them." When supping in a temple, as some dirty loaves were set before him, he took them up and threw them away, saying that nothing dirty ought to come into a temple and when some one said to him, "You philosophize without being possessed of any knowledge," he said, "If I only pretend to wisdom, that is philosophizing." A man once brought him a boy, and said that he was a very clever child, and one of an admirable disposition." "What, then," said Diogenes, "does he want of me?" He used to say, that those who utter virtuous sentiments but do not do them, are no better than harps, for that a harp has no hearing or feeling. Once he was going into a theatre while every one else was coming out of it and when asked why he did so, "It is," said he, "what I have been doing all my life." Once when he saw a young man putting on effeminate airs, he said to him, "Are you not ashamed to have worse plans for yourself than nature had for you? for she has made you a man, but you are trying to force yourself to be a woman." When he saw an ignorant man tuning a psaltery, he said to him, "Are you not ashamed to be arranging proper sounds on a wooden instrument, and not arranging your soul to a proper life?" When a man said to him, "I am not calculated for philosophy," he said, "Why then do you live, if you have no desire to live properly?" To a man who treated his father with contempt, he said, "Are you not ashamed to despise him to whom you owe it that you have it in your power to give yourself airs at all?" Seeing a handsome young man chattering in an unseemly manner, he said, "Are you not ashamed to draw a sword cut of lead out of a scabbard of ivory?" Being once reproached for drinking in a vintner's shop, he said, "I have my hair cut, too, in a barber's." At another time, he was attacked for having accepted a cloak from Antipater, but he replied:

"Refuse not thou to heed
The gifts which from the mighty Gods proceed."19

A man once struck him with a broom, and said, "Take care" so he struck him in return with his staff, and said, "Take care."

He once said to a man who was addressing anxious entreaties to a courtesan, "What can you wish to obtain, you wretched man, that you had not better be disappointed in? "Seeing a man reeking all over with unguents, he said to him, "Have a care, lest the fragrance of your head give a bad odour to your life." One of his sayings was, that servants serve their masters, and that wicked men are the slaves of their appetites. Being asked why slaves were called andrapoda , he replied, "Because they have the feet of men (tous podas andron) and a soul such as you who are asking this question." He once asked a profligate fellow for a mina and when he put the question to him, why he asked others for an obol, and him for a mina, he said, "Because I hope to get something from the others another time, but the Gods alone know whether I shall ever extract anything from you again." Once he was reproached for asking favours, while Plato never asked for any and he said

"He asks as well as I do, but he does it
Bending his head, that no one else may hear."

One day he saw an unskilful archer shooting so he went and sat down by the target, saying, "Now I shall be out of harm's way." He used to say, that those who were in love were disappointed in regard of the pleasure they expected. When he was asked whether death was an evil, he replied, "How can that be an evil which we do not feel when it is present?" When Alexander was once standing by him, and saying, "Do not you fear me?" He replied, "No for what are you, a good or an evil?" And as he said that he was good, "Who, then," said Diogenes, "fears the good?" He used to say, that education was, for the young sobriety, for the old comfort, for the poor riches, and for the rich an ornament." When Didymus the adulterer was once trying to cure the eye of a young girl (korês), he said, "Take care, lest when you are curing the eye of the maiden, you do not hurt the pupil."20 A man once said to him, that his friends laid plots against him "What then," said he, "are you to do, if you must look upon both your friends and enemies in the same light?"

On one occasion he was asked, what was the most excellent thing among men and he said, "Freedom of speech." He went once into a school, and saw many statues of the Muses, but very few pupils, and said, "Gods, and all my good schoolmasters, you have plenty of pupils." He was in the habit of doing everything in public, whether in respect of Venus or Ceres and he used to put his conclusions in this way to people: "If there is nothing absurd in dining, then it is not absurd to dine in the market-place. But it is not absurd to dine, therefore it is not absurd to dine in the market-place." And as he was continually doing manual work in public, he said one day, "Would that by rubbing my belly I could get rid of hunger." Other sayings also are attributed to him, which it would take a long time to enumerate, there is such a multiplicity of them.

He used to say, that there were two kinds of exercise: that, namely, of the mind and that of the body and that the latter of these created in the mind such quick and agile phantasies at the time of its performance, as very much facilitated the practice of virtue but that one was imperfect without the other, since the health and vigour necessary for the practice of what is good, depend equally on both mind and body. And he used to allege as proofs of this, and of the ease which practice imparts to acts of virtue, that people could see that in the case of mere common working trades, and other employments of that kind, the artisans arrived at no inconsiderable accuracy by constant practice and that any one may see how much one flute player, or one wrestler, is superior to another, by his own continued practice. And that if these men transferred the same training to their minds they would not labour in a profitless or imperfect manner. He used to say also, that there was nothing whatever in life which could be brought to perfection without practice, and that that alone was able to overcome every obstacle that, therefore, as we ought to repudiate all useless toils, and to apply ourselves to useful labours and to live happily, we are only unhappy in consequence of most exceeding folly. For the very contempt of pleasure, if we only inure ourselves to it, is very pleasant and just as they who are accustomed to live luxuriously, are brought very unwillingly to adopt the contrary system so they who have been originally inured to that opposite system, feel a sort of pleasure in the contempt of pleasure.

This used to be the language which he held, and he used to show in practice, really altering men's habits, and deferring in all things rather to the principles of nature than to those of law saying that he was adopting the same fashion of life as Hercules had, preferring nothing in the world to liberty and saying that everything belonged to the wise, and advancing arguments such as I mentioned just above. For instance: every thing belongs to the Gods and the Gods are friends to the wise and all the property of friends is held in common therefore everything belong to the wise. He also argued about the law, that without it there is no possibility of a constitution being maintained for without a city there can be nothing orderly, but a city is an orderly thing and without a city there can be no law therefore law is order. And he played in the same manner with the topics of noble birth, and reputation, and all things of that kind, saying that they were all veils, as it were, for wickedness and that that was the only proper constitution which consisted in order. Another of his doctrines was that all women ought to be possessed in common and he said that marriage was a nullity, and that the proper way would be for every man to live with her whom he could persuade to agree with him. And on the same principle he said, that all people's sons ought to belong to every one in common and there was nothing intolerable in the idea of taking anything out of a temple, or eating any animal whatever, and that there was no impiety in tasting even human flesh as is plain from the habits of foreign nations and he said that this principle might be correctly extended to every case and every people. For he said that in reality everything was a combination of all things. For that in bread there was meat, and in vegetables there was bread, and so there were some particles of all other bodies in everything, communicating by invisible passages and evaporating.

VII. And he explains this theory of his clearly in the Thyestes, if indeed the tragedies attributed to him are really his composition, and not rather the work of Philistus, of Aegina, his intimate friend, or of Pasiphon, the son of Lucian, who is stated by Favorinus, in his Universal History, to have written them after Diogenes' death.

VIII. Music and geometry, and astronomy, and all things of that kind, he neglected, as useless and unnecessary. But he was a man very happy in meeting arguments, as is plain from what we have already said.

IX. And he bore being sold with a most magnanimous spirit. For as he was sailing to Aegina, and was taken prisoner by some pirates, under the command of Scirpalus, he was carried off to Crete and sold and when the Circe asked him what art he understood, he said, "That of governing men." And presently pointing out a Corinthian, very carefully dressed, (the same Xeniades whom we have mentioned before), he said, "Sell me to that man for he wants a master." Accordingly Xeniades bought him and carried him away to Corinth and then he made him tutor of his sons, and committed to him the entire management of his house. And he behaved himself in every affair in such a manner, that Xeniades, when looking over his property, said, "A good genius has come into my house." And Cleomenes, in his book which is called the Schoolmaster, says, that he wished to ransom all his relations, but that Diogenes told him that they were all fools for that lions did not become the slaves of those who kept them, but, on the contrary, those who maintained lions were their slaves. For that it was the part of a slave to fear, but that wild beasts were formidable to men.

X. And the man had the gift of persuasion in a wonderful degree so that he could easily overcome any one by his arguments. Accordingly, it is said that an Aeginetan of the name of Onesicritus, having two sons, sent to Athens one of them, whose name was Androsthenes, and that he, after having heard Diogenes lecture, remained there and that after that, he sent the elder, Philiscus, who has been already mentioned, and that Philiscus was charmed in the same manner. And last of all, he came himself, and then he too remained, no less than his son, studying philosophy at the feet of Diogenes. So great a charm was there in the discourses of Diogenes. Another pupil of his was Phocion, who was surnamed the Good and Stilpon, the Megarian, and a great many other men of eminence as statesmen.

XI. He is said to have died when he was nearly ninety years of age, but there are different accounts given of his death. For some say that he ate an ox's foot raw, and was in consequence seized with a bilious attack, of which he died others, of whom Cercidas, a Megalopolitan or Cretan, is one, say that he died of holding his breath for several days and Cercidas speaks thus of him in his Meliambics:

He, that Sinopian who bore the stick,
Wore his cloak doubled, and in th' open air
Dined without washing, would not bear with life
A moment longer: but he shut his teeth,
And held his breath. He truly was the son
Of Jove, and a most heavenly-minded dog,
The wise Diogenes.

Others say that he, while intending to distribute a polypus to his dogs, was bitten by them through the tendon of his foot, and so died. But his own greatest friends, as Antisthenes tells us in his Successions, rather sanction the story of his having died from holding his breath. For he used to live in the Craneum, which was a Gymnasium at the gates of Corinth. And his friends came according to their custom, and found him with his head covered and as they did not suppose that he was asleep, for he was not a man much subject to the influence of night or sleep, they drew away his cloak from his face, and found him no longer breathing and they thought that he had done this on purpose, wishing to escape the remaining portion of his life.

On this there was a quarrel, as they say, between his friends, as to who should bury him and they even came to blows but when the elders and chief men of the city came there, they say that he was buried by them at the gate which leads to the Isthmus, And they placed over him a pillar, and on that a dog in Parian marble. And at a later period his fellow citizens honoured him with brazen statues, and put this inscription on them:

E'en brass by lapse of time doth old become,
But there is no such time as shall efface,
Your lasting glory, wise Diogenes
Since you alone did teach to men the art
Of a contented life: the surest path
To glory and a lasting happiness.

We ourselves have also written an epigram on him in the proceleusmatic metre.

A. Tell me Diogenes, tell me true, I pray,
How did you die what fate to Pluto bore you?
B. The savage bits of an envious dog did kill me.

Some, however, say that when he was dying, he ordered his friends to throw his corpse away without burying it, so that every beast might tear it, or else to throw it into a ditch, and sprinkle a little dust over it. And others say that his injunctions were, that he should be thrown into the Ilissus that so he might be useful to his brethren. But Demetrius, in his treatise on Men of the Same Name, says that Diogenes died in Corinth the same day that Alexander died in Babylon. And he was already an old man, as early as the hundred and thirteenth Olympiad,

XII. The following books are attributed to him. The dialogues entitled the Cephalion the Icthyas the Jackdaw the Leopard the People of the Athenians the Republic one called Moral Art one on Wealth one on Love the Theodorus the Hypsias the Aristarchus one on Death a volume of Letters seven Tragedies, the Helen, the Thyestes, the Hercules, the Achilles, the Medea, the Chrysippus, and the Oedippus.

But Sosicrates, in the first book of his Successions, and Satyrus, in the fourth book of his Lives, both assert that none of all these are the genuine composition of Diogenes. And Satyrus affirms that the tragedies are the work of Philiscus, the Aeginetan, a friend of Diogenes. But Sotion, in his seventh book, says that these are the only genuine works of Diogenes: a dialogue on Virtue another on the Good another on Love the Beggar the Solmaeus the Leopard the Cassander the Cephalion and that the Aristarchus, the Sisyphus, the Ganymede, a volume of Apophthegms, and another of Letters, are all the work of Philiscus.

XIII. There were five persons of the name of Diogenes. The first a native of Apollonia, a natural philosopher and the beginning of his treatise on Natural Philosophy is as follows: "It appears to me to be well for every one who commences any kind of philosophical treatise, to lay down some undeniable principle to start with." The second was a Sicymian, who wrote an account of Peloponnesus. The third was the man of whom we have been speaking. The fourth was a Stoic, a native of Seleucia, but usually called a Babylonian, from the proximity of Seleucia to Babylon. The fifth was a native of Tarsus, who wrote on the subject of some questions concerning poetry which he endeavours to solve.

XIV. Athenodorus, in the eighth book of his Conversations, says, that the philosopher always had a shining appearance, from his habit of anointing himself.

1. The passage is not free from difficulty but the thing which misled Diogenes appears to have been that nomisma, the word here used, meant both "a coin, or coinage," and "a custom."

2. This line is from Euripides, Medea, 411.

3. The saperda was the coracinus (a kind of fish) when salted.

4. This is probably an allusion to a prosecution instituted by Demosthenes against Midias, which was afterwards compromised by Midias paying Demosthenes thirty minae, or three thousand drachmae. See Dem. Or. cont. Midias.

5. This is a pun upon the similarity of Athlias's name to the Greek adjective athlios, which signifies miserable.

6. The heiromnêmones were the sacred secretaries or recorders sent by each Amphictyonic state to the council along with their pulagoras, (the actual deputy or minister, L. & S. Gr. & Eng. Lex., in voc.

7. There is a pun here. Cheirôn is the word used for worse. Chiron was also the most celebrated of the Centaurs, the tutor of Achilles.

8. There is a pun intended here as Diogenes proposed Didymus a fate somewhat similar to that of the beaver.

Cupiens evadere damno

9. This is taken from Homer, Il. 10. 387. Pope's Version, 455.

10. This is also from Homer. Il. 2. 95. Pope's Version, 120.

11. This is a parody on Homer, Il 14. 95, where the line ends hoi' agoreueis "if such is your language" which Diogenes here changes to of agorazeis, if you buy such things.

12. This is a line of the Phoenissae of Euripides, v. 40.

13. The pun here is on the similarity of the noun elaan, an olive, to the verb elaan, to drive the words mastixen d' elaan are of frequent occurrence in Homer.

14. This line occurs, Hom. Il. 5 83.

15. The Samothracian Gods were Gods of the sea, and it was customary for those who had been saved from shipwreck to make them an offering of some part of what they had saved and of their hair, if they had saved nothing but their lives.

16. Eurytion was another of the Centaurs, who was killed by Hercules.

17. This is a pun on the similarity of the sound, Tegea, to tegos, a brothel.

18. The Greek is eranon aitoumenos pros ton eranarchên ephê, - eranos was not only a subscription or contribution for the support of the poor, but also a club or society of subscribers to a common fund for any purpose, social, commercial, or charitable or especially political. . . . On the various eranoi v. Böckh, P. E. i. 328. Att. Process. p. 540, s. 99. L. & S. in voc. eranos.

20. There is a pun here korê means both "a girl" and "the pupil of the eye." And ptheirô, "to destroy," is also especially used for " to seduce."

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