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[Vol.33 (2020)] How Virtue Reforms Attachment to External Goods: The Transformation of Happiness in the Analects
Author : Bradford Cokelet
Date : 20.02.28
Page : 9-39
Keyword : virtue, Confucianism, Analects, well-being, external goods, Olberding
Abstract :

After distinguishing three conceptions of virtue and its impact on ordinary
attachments to external goods such as social status, power, friends, and
wealth, this paper argues that the Analects is most charitably interpreted
as endorsing the whole-hearted internalization conception, on which
virtue reforms but does not completely extinguish ordinary attachments
to external goods. I begin by building on Amy Olberding’s attack on the
attachments conception, but go on to criticize her alternative,
resolute sacrifice conception, on which the virtuous retain their
ordinary attachments to external goods but are able to master them and
willingly settle for virtue. I argue that we should reject this view because,
unlike the wholehearted internalization conception, it cannot capture the
facts that virtue silences or attenuates attachment to viciously obtained
external goods and that virtue grounds positive emotional and cognitive
self-assessments that are incompatible with some ordinary attachments to
external goods.

Attachments : 1(Bradford Cokelet)0228.pdf

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