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Volume 56 Issue 3
March 2024
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Citation: LIANG Tao. Mencius' Three Dimensions of the Distinction between Righteousness and Profit[J]. Academic Monthly, 2024, 56(3): 37-43. shu

Mencius' Three Dimensions of the Distinction between Righteousness and Profit

  • Mencius' discourse on dialectics of righteousness(yi,义) and profit(li,利) involves various aspects and embodies rich connotations.Regarding the disorderly social reality,Mencius advocates prioritizing righteousness over profit,opposing the pursuit of profit at the expense of righteousness.Regarding the establishment of a society with “Dao”(道),Mencius further proposes that righteousness should be considered as profit.He believes that political authority should first seek righteousness rather than profit,which ultimately translates into the realization of the people's “profit”,believing that righteousness resides in what benefits the people.Lastly,regarding the ultimate sense of ethical discourse,Mencius believes righteousness is superior to profit.In instances of a conflict between the two,one should be willing to sacrifice oneself for righteousness,showing the noble and dignified nature of being human.
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        Mencius' Three Dimensions of the Distinction between Righteousness and Profit

        Abstract: Mencius' discourse on dialectics of righteousness(yi,义) and profit(li,利) involves various aspects and embodies rich connotations.Regarding the disorderly social reality,Mencius advocates prioritizing righteousness over profit,opposing the pursuit of profit at the expense of righteousness.Regarding the establishment of a society with “Dao”(道),Mencius further proposes that righteousness should be considered as profit.He believes that political authority should first seek righteousness rather than profit,which ultimately translates into the realization of the people's “profit”,believing that righteousness resides in what benefits the people.Lastly,regarding the ultimate sense of ethical discourse,Mencius believes righteousness is superior to profit.In instances of a conflict between the two,one should be willing to sacrifice oneself for righteousness,showing the noble and dignified nature of being human.

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