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The Inherent Characters of the Human Mind As the Defining Characteristic of Human Beings in Wang Yan
Author : Kim, Yon-jae
Date : 20.01.30
Page :
Keyword : the Creativity of Mind, Ultimacy, Potency, Primacy, Ultimate Reality, Sagehood, Self-realization, Heavenly Principle, the Rectification of the Mind, the Fulfillment of the Innate Knowledge of Goodness
Abstract :


This essay is focused upon identifying the essential characters
inherent in the human mind and thereby how the mind can be referred to as defining
characteristic of a human being. Within the Confucian world-view emphasizing
self-realization toward Ultimate Reality, the human mind has metaphysical
significance in the threefold aspect of a dynamic unity constitutive of creativity:
ultimacy, potency, and primacy. The mind is characterized by ultimacy in the
ontological sense of being identical with the original substance of being which is in
harmony with the Ultimate Reality. The mind is characterized by potency in the

existential sense of its being open to the concrete process of self-realization. And
the mind is characterized by primacy in the integral sense of revealing its creative
status in the complete manifestation of humanity, which results from the point of
view of the dynamic unity of ultimacy and potency. Particularly, the primacy of
mind is characteristic of the human mind as heart-mind.
In the case of Wang Yang-ming, the inherent characteristics of the mind have a
constitutive status in fulfilling its innate knowledge of goodness, that is, what is
called zhi-liang-zhi in Chinese characters. The threefold aspect of ultimacy, potency,
and primacy inherent in the human mind seems to provide a basis for elucidating
the creative relationship between the original substance of the mind, which is “the
innate knowledge of goodness” (liang-zhi), and its practical efforts which are
realizable in the dynamic unity of equilibrium and harmony (zhong-he) and the total
substance and great function (quan-ti-da-yong). The mind as the innate knowledge
of goodness can be cultivated, and thus, by eliminating selfish desires, it may reach
a state where, as ultimate reality, it functions creatively and where all things can be
identical with the mind. The mind has an internal identity as a meaningful entity,
and, on the other hand, makes internal decisions for self-transformation. It is here
that a human mind has a character of primacy. The mind attaches primacy to a
creative agency presiding in the mutual relationship between an integral part of the
original substance and integral part of its practical efforts. This characteristic gives
significance to the human mind as heart-mind. It seems that the human mind
constitutes a dynamic integrality of the unity in creativity and creativity in unity. In
terms of the primacy of mind in self-realization, the mind has a character of
ultimacy in sustaining the original substance as the ground of self-realization, while
it has a character of potency in making practical efforts as the concrete process of
self-realization.


Attachments : vol.14-11(김연재).pdf


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