Within the Four Seas: The Dialogue of East and West by Joseph Needham

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By Joseph Needham

First released in 1969.
includes a few of Joseph Needham's most vital essays, lectures and proclaims at the heritage of chinese language technological know-how, expertise and tradition. additionally incorporated are a few extra own techniques influenced via his personal travels and reports in China, together with a couple of poems.
The booklet discusses the dear social and highbrow affects that have flowed to Europe from South in addition to East Asia, and means that the occasions of the 20 th century have been a average improvement of chinese language historical past, no longer a deviation from it.

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E 65 W i t h i n t h e F o u r S e a s anything like the same part in China as the two indigenous doctrines. It is very curious that although philosophically ‘other­ worldly’, for economic reasons it came to be allied with peasant struggles, and in some periods at least as much so as the Taoists. But presumably because o f its emphasis on compassion, the karma aspect o f Buddhism, alongside that o f emptiness (iunya), it was very important and early in the field with regard to the establish­ ment o f hospitals, orphanages, and similar institutions.

2 (Princeton, 1953), pp. S72fF. 3 C f. FSng Yu-Lan, loc. , V ol. 2, pp. 237ff, 293ff, 3<5ofF. 1 S C C , V ol. 2, pp. ; also, in preliminary form, ‘Natural Law in China and Europe’ , Journal of the History of Ideas, ia , 3 and 194 (1951)*. and abridged, ‘Human Law and the Laws o f Nature in China and the W est’ (Hobhouse Memorial Lecture, London, 1951). Interesting discussions continue still, however. Cf. D . Bodde in HarvardJournal o f Asiatic Studies, ao, 709 (1957)* L . C . Goodrich, The Literary Inquisition o f Chhien-Lung (Baltimore, 1935).

But the question is more complex than this, for it turns on the extent to which Confucius was consciously opposed to the whole system o f bronze-age proto-feudalism, and in favour o f more collectivist forms. There is, at any rate, no doubt that some o f his recorded actions indicate this, and that some o f his descendants played a part in those popular rebellions o f which w e have already spoken. A strong case for the politically demo­ cratic character o f Confucius has been made out by the sinologist H.

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