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shikisoku
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2011 7:46 am    Post subject: Shiba Ryotaro Reply with quote
I am not sure how many of his books have been translated.
Any of you guys have read his book?

http://www.shibazaidan.or.jp/
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Tornadoes28
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2011 10:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
The Last Shogun, which was translated into English, was a very good book in my opinion. The book did a good job describing the difficult choices that Keiki had to make. Also, it was interesting reading about Keiki's life after the Meiji Restoration until his death in the early 20th century.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2011 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I second what Tornadoes said on that one; would like to see much more of his work translated.

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shikisoku
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2012 9:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I am reading his book "The state of Meiji"
Shiba said Neo-Confucianism made East Asia backset.停滞

Quote:
中国の儒教(朱子学)は徳川幕府に害毒でした。
しかし、その害は、日本は皮膚くらいを侵されている程度でしたが、李氏朝鮮(韓国)は、骨髄まで侵されていました。
儒教というのは、破滅的なばかりに自己中心的な考え方で、当然ながら外国は蔑視すべきもの、異文化などは一切認めぬ。
さらにいえば、民族を自己崇拝という甘美な液体に浸からせるという思想で、要するに自分の文化以外の世界については思考まで停止しきっているといったものでした
Shogunate was affected by Neo-Confucianism.
Japan was affected only skin but China and Korea were affected to the bones.
The thought was like poison when it's about domestic culture and foreign culture.
Banefully egoistic thought.
Foreign culture was something to look down.
The thought make the ethnicity self-worship.
In short, it made brain freeze when it's about outside of their culture.
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shikisoku
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2012 9:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Neo-Confuciansm was made to fit 宋 period China.

Quote:
元に入るにおよんで、科挙の試験は、朱子の解釈に従うべきものとさだめられ、やがて朝鮮の科挙もそうなりました。
このおかげで少なくとも5世紀ほどの長期にわたって、朱子のドグマが中国、朝鮮、日本を支配することになります。
滑稽なことです。
形而上学というのは、理屈学です。
時代的状況が去れば、屁理屈になってしまいます。
屁理屈が東アジアを長く支配してきたのです。
いわゆるアジア的停滞のしんには、朱子学があると思います。
Kakyo examination was set up to match with Neo-Confucianism in Mongol period, Korean Kakyo as well.
Neo-Confucianism dogma ruled China, Korea, Japan for 5 centuries.
It's hilarious.
Metaphysical philosophy is Theorism.
If situation of the time changed, the theory becomes sophism.
Sophism had ruled East Asia for a long time.Neo-Confucianism was the core of so-called Asian backset.


Following is from Isabella Bird.
Quote:
But it must be remarked in connection with education in Korea that so lately as the close of 1896 a book, called Confucianist Scholars’ Handbook of the Latitudes and Longitudes, had been edited by Sin Ki Sun, Minister of Education, prefaced by two Councillors of the Education Department,
and published at Government expense, in which the following sentences occur : —

P. 52 : “Europe is too far away from the centre of civilization,
i.e. the Middle Kingdom; hence Russians, Turks,
English, French, Germans, and Belgians look more like birds and beasts than men, and their languages sound like the chirping of fowls.”
Again: “According to the views of recent generations, what westerners call the Christian Religion is vulgar, shallow, and erroneous, and is an instance of the vileness of Barbarian customs, which are not worthy of serious discussion. . . .
They worship the heavenly spirits, but do not sacrifice to parents, they insult heaven in every way, and overturn the social relations.
This is truly a type of Barbarian vileness, and is not worthy of treatment in our review of foreign customs, especially as at this time the religion is somewhat on the wane.

“Europeans have planted their spawn in every country of the globe except China. All of them honor this religion (!),
but we are surprised to find that the Chinese scholars and people have not escaped contamination by it.”
On p. 42 it is said: “Of late the so-called Ye Su Kyo(Christianity) has been trying to contaminate the world with its barbarous teachings. It deceives the masses by its stories of Heaven and Hell : it interferes with the rites of ancestral
worship, and interdicts the custom of bowing before the gods of Heaven and Earth. These are the ravings of a disordered intellect, and are not worth discussing.”


Last edited by shikisoku on Thu Jan 12, 2012 5:34 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
I think Neo-Confucianism survived as long as it did because it became the philosophical grounding of the entire feudal structure. When that started falling apart, which was happening wholesale from the mid-18th Century due to the increasing monetary power of the merchants, people began questioning its validity. The Tokugawa certainly knew that it was, crassly put, a way to keep the masses down. If 90% of the population was uneducated and engaged in manual labor, there wouldn't be a lot of challenges to the leadership.

Being "backward" in relation to Europe, though, I think is another issue. True, Japan took a harder line against exposure to the West than China or India, but look what happened to them! As long as the feudal system held up and there was no external threat, there was relatively little interest in co-opting any other culture, and as you say, the self-superiority expressed in Neo-Confucianism allowed for little doubt.

Also, because of the Japanese proclivity for both "this" and "that" to be simultaneously true even in contradiction, somehow the fact that Buddhism, kanji, and Confucianism itself were actually imports from abroad did not inform the argument!

The only time there were serious challenges to the feudal structure and its Neo-Confucian underpinnings, really in the entire Edo jidai happened in the face of crop failures and the resultant famines. I'm not speaking here, of course, about the disaffected intellectuals who sprang up here and there, but of wholesale peasant uprisings the Bakufu or han suppressed by force.

The major game-changer was the Black Ships.

If you look at a really long curve of world history, you see that any "ism" only survives as long as the conditions from which it arose; Communism being a good example. When it becomes unsustainable economically it dies a natural death within 50 years.

I also believe that any "ism" which does not strongly take into account the grounding truths of natural law and human behavior will not long survive because it's trying to work at cross purposes to Nature itself; a futile endeavor if I've ever heard of one.

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shikisoku
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 7:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Actually Shiba also said the economy changed the sense of value in Edo period.
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shikisoku
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2012 5:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
From "The state of Meiji"

Quote:
西郷が東京にいたたまれなくなったのは、じつは政論、政見の相違といったものよりも、馬車にノリ、ぜいたくな洋風生活を取り入れて民の苦しみを傲然と見下ろしているかのような官員たちの栄華をこれ以上見ることに耐えられなくなったからでした。
西郷は真正の武士でした。
しかも東京政府は西郷がつくったのです。
西郷はこれらの現状を見て”討幕のいくさはつづまるところ無益だった。”とこぼしたり
「かえって徳川家に対して申し訳なかった。」
といって、つねに恥じ入る心をあらわしていた、という話を福沢は聞いています。


Saigo didn't want to stay in Tokyo was not because of difference of political view but the arrogant bureaucrats who were taking Westernized laxuary living did not care about poor people.
However the government was made by himself.
Sometimes he said "Anti-Shogunate war was meaningless" or "I am sorry for Tokugawa."
He was always ashamed.
According to Fukuzawa Yukichi.
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