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Prof. Rosemont Speaks Glowingly of Confucianism at DRBA

阮果舟 文 by David Rounds
比丘尼近相 中譯 Chinese Translated by Bhikshuni Jin Syang






Prof. Rosemont's lecture at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas

Professor Henry Rosemont Jr., a leading American scholar of Confucianism and a long-time friend of Dharma Realm Buddhist Association and its Institute for World Religions, came to Berkeley Buddhist Monastery and to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas in November to deliver four talks to various audiences on the principles of Confucianism.

On Wednesday, November 16, Professor Rosemont spoke in the Buddha Hall of Berkeley Buddhist Monastery to an assembly of students, scholars, and friends. His topic was the life, teaching style, and character of the man we know as Confucius. He gave his presentation jointly with Michael Nylan, who is Professor of Chinese History at the University of California at Berkeley, and, like Professor Rosemont, an expert on the Confucian Analects.

The two scholars again collaborated the next day in the Berkeley Monastery Library in speaking to the Core Seminar class of Dharma Realm Buddhist University’s new Berkeley-centered Masters Degree Program in Buddhist Studies and Practice. This time the scholars’ general theme was the spiritual nature of the original teachings of Confucius. They argued that the Master we meet in the Analects, rather than proposing a general ethic for society, as Neo-Confucian schools have generally interpreted him, instead presented teachings that varied with the situation and person and that aimed specifically at fostering spiritual progress.

On Saturday, November 18, Professor Rosemont journeyed to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, accompanied by a former student, Mary Bockover, another Confucian scholar who is Professor of Philosophy at Humboldt State University and a frequent visitor to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas. Professor Rosemont spoke briefly at Honoring Elders Day, then met informally in a question and answer session with a large group of visitors and resident students and teachers, both Sangha and laity. Finally, in the evening, Professor Rosemont gave a formal talk entitled the “Non-Finality of Physical Death” in Confucianism. Here he emphasized Confucianism’s teaching concerning the continuity of memory from generation to generation, formalized by rites of remembrance and respect for one’s ancestors.

Henry Rosemont Jr. holds a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Washington. A Distinguished Professor emeritus at St. Mary’s College in Maryland, he is currently visiting professor of religious studies at Brown University. He has published widely in the areas of Confucian Studies, Western philosophy, linguistics, and comparative religion. With Roger Ames, he is recently published a new translation of the Analects, in a bilingual edition. Among his other recent works is Rationality and Religious Experience, which grew out of the first of the annual Ven. Hsüan Hua Memorial Lectures, sponsored by the Institute for World Religions. Professor Rosemont has been especially supportive of the Insititute, of its annual journal Religion East and West, and of the Hsüan Hua Memorial Lecture series, the sixth of which will be given this coming February.

Prof. Rosemont with Huston Smith at the Institute for World Religions


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