NOBILITY AND CIVILITY
Globalization has become an inescapable fact of contemporary life. Some leaders, in both the East and the West, believe that human rights are culture-bound and that liberal democracy is essentially Western, inapplicable to the non-Western world. How can civilized life be preserved and issues of human rights and civil society be addressed if the material forces dominating world affairs are allowed to run blindly, uncontrolled by any cross-cultural consensus on how human values can be given effective expression and direction?
In a thoughtful meditation ranging widely over several civilizations and historical eras, Wm. Theodore de Bary argues that the concepts of leadership and public morality in the major Asian traditions offer a valuable perspective on humanizing the globalization process. Turning to the classic ideals of the Buddhist, Hindu, Confucian, and Japanese traditions, he investigates the nature of true leadership and its relation to learning, virtue, and education in human governance; the role in society of the public intellectual; and the responsibilities of those in power in creating and maintaining civil society.
De Bary recognizes that throughout history ideals have always come up against messy human complications. Still, he finds in the exploration and affirmation of common values a worthy attempt to grapple with persistent human dilemmas across the globe.
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8 In the pathos of this episode is the quintessential paradox of the feudal age : an
outpouring of Buddhist compassion , overridden by the stern code of war in this
hero , fatefully “ born into a military household ” and thus undeterred by ...
The term had an almost religious intensity — as if the issue of personal honor
overrode all other values and interests , transcending the otherwise expedient
morality that tended to prevail , even in matters of feudal loyalty . A lasting and ...
But , on the other hand , some of them sought a deeper point than the feudal
vertical system of loyalties for the significance of casting away one ' s life . This
latter tendency gave rise to the Way of Venerating the Emperor ( sonno ) that was
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The Noble Paths of Buddha and Rama
Buddhist Spirituality and Chinese Civility
Shotokus Constitution and the Civil
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