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Title: Natural law and normativity in the Huangdi Sijing
Keywords: Huangdi Sijing, Huang-Lao Boshu, Huang-Lao, Daoism, Chinese Philosophy, Chinese Law
Issue Date: 29-Dec-2005
Citation: KAM CHUEN HWEE, ERNEST (2005-12-29). Natural law and normativity in the Huangdi Sijing. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: This thesis explores the nature of normative constraints in the Huangdi Sijing (a Huang-Lao document discovered at Mawangdui in 1973). Some commentators suggest that because the crucial concept of fa/a??lawa?? is constrained by the cycles of the cosmos, the text espouses a natural law theory. A careful scrutiny of the text reveals that it lacks a notion of law as understood in the West, and that though morality is often a consideration for its injunctions, as a whole, it tends towards moral ambivalence, making the label of natural law inappropriate. Nonetheless, normative constraints may still be discerned in the form of a narrative, whose participant becomes constrained by the dictates of a moral Tian/Heaven, as well as a hidden discourse that prescribes behavior proper of a quasi-Yellow Emperor. Since doctrines of the Huang-Lao School in general cannot be justifiably discerned via a single text, my findings should only be read in a localized context.
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Open)

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