By Roger T. Ames
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Additional info for The Art of Rulership: A Study of Ancient Chinese Political Thought
Others, such as the Kuan Tzu, the Ho-kuan Tzu, and the Huai-nan Tzu, were not easily 1ocatable in well-defined traditions, and so led others to suggest a rethinking of early intellectual lineages working from Huang-Lao as a foundation. While scholarly opinion varies on the inclusion of all, or parts, of some, or all, of these works in a Huang-Lao philosophical lineage, some, including myself, contend that the Huai-nan Tzu not only belongs there, but is its final and most sophisticated product. When Ssu-ma T'an (d.
10 The Chou culture, on the other hand, is not only preserved in Confucius' own state of Lu,11 but further, coming after the Hsia and Shang, has had the benefit of absorbing what was of abiding value from these two earlier traditions (Analects 5/3/14): "The Master said: 'The Chou surveys the two preceding dynasties. How resplendent is the culture! '" Perhaps the first priority that we find in this Confucian philosophy of education is the notion of education by example: both the inherited cultural tradition and those who best reflect an understanding of it have a paradigmatic function.
By the end of Western Chou, the political institutions had been drained of substance and the Chou kings had become puppets manipulated by ambitious feudal lords. In the process of degeneration, the glory that had been the early Chou culture was divested of its underlying moral content; only the name and the ceremonial shell remained intact. In response to this process of spiraling decline, Confucius advocated a return to the Way of Chou and a revival of the fertile and substantial culture which had fostered this golden age.
The Art of Rulership: A Study of Ancient Chinese Political Thought by Roger T. Ames