Dao (2017) 16:307–308 DOI 10.1007/s11712-017-9557-7 Guest Editor’s Introduction: Music and Philosophy in Early China So Jeong PARK Published online: 6 July 2017 Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017 The enormous significance of music in Chinese philosophy is bound to strike any contemporary reader with curiosity or a desire for further investigation. Music plays many roles in Chinese philosophy: it has been regarded as an indispensable part of understanding human nature, a necessary tool in creating an orderly society, a synonym for moral perfection, and a peerless metaphor for the Dao. This exceptional emphasis on music was not limited to a specific school or region but was a remarkably extensive and sustained concern. Even recently excavated texts in the tombs of remote southern states of ancient China affirm the importance of music in understanding early Chinese thought. They describe excellence in hearing as the key characteristic of a sage and elevate music’s power to move the human heart above all other forms of self-cultiva- tion. In early China, music was deemed as neither an artifact nor an entertainment but as profound human experience. This special issue is the first fruit of the collective efforts to explore these questions, which were the
Dao – Springer Journals
Published: Jul 6, 2017
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