Meaning of WANG YANG-MING in English

born 1472, Yu-yao, Chekiang Province, China died 1529, Nan-en, Kiangsi Pinyin Wang Yangming, original name (Wade-Giles romanization) Wang Shou-jen, literary name Pe-an, canonized as Wen-ch'eng, Japanese Oyo-mei Chinese scholar-official whose Idealistic interpretation of Neo-Confucianism influenced philosophical thinking in East Asia for centuries. Though his government career was rather unstable, his suppression of rebellions brought a century of peace to his region. His philosophical doctrines, emphasizing understanding of the world from within the mind, were in direct conflict with the rationalism espoused by Chu Hsi, a highly esteemed Neo-Confucianist of the 12th century, and Wang's "false teaching" was for a time proscribed. Additional reading Wing-tsit Chan, "Wang Yang-Ming: A Biography," Philosophy East and West (in prep.), a comprehensive account of Wang's life, particularly his achievements as a government official and as a philosopher, based on standard Chinese and Japanese sources; Wang Yang-ming, Instructions for Practical Living, and Other Neo-Confucian Writing (1963), a translation of Wang's conversations and letters, in which his philosophy is set forth, and seven official documents of his, illustrating his social and political views with introductions and comments on these works.

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