The Great Learning
The Great Learning developed from many authors adapting to the needs and beliefs of the community at the time. The Cheng brothers, Yi (1033–1107) and Hao(1032–1085) both utilized the Great Learning's philosophies. Their ideas met with strong official opposition, but were reconstituted by Zhu Xi. Cheng's idea of yi was that it was identical with nature, which he believed was essentially good. Cheng's yi emphasized the necessity of acquiring knowledge.
The Great Learning (simplified Chinese: 大学; traditional Chinese: 大學; pinyin: Dà xué) was one of the "Four Books" in Confucianism. The Great Learning had come from a chapter in the Classic of Rites which formed one of the Five Classics. It consists of a short main text attributed to the teachings of Confucius and then ten commentary chapters accredited to one of Confucius' disciples, Zengzi. The ideals of the book were supposedly Confucius's; however the text was written after his death.
My master, the philosopher Cheng, says —" The Great Learning is a book left by Confucius, and forms the gate by which first learners enter into virtue. That we can now perceive the order in which the ancients pursued their learning, is solely owing to the preservation of this work, the Analects and Mencius coming after it. Learners must commence their course with this and then it may be hoped they will be kept from error."
- The Great Learning
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