Are There Affinities between Ancient Chinese Philosophical Thought and Currere?

Wanying Wang


I address three aspects of ancient Chinese philosophical thought and Pinar’s currere that seem to resonate. The ancient Chinese philosophical thought that will be discussed refers mainly to that advanced by Wang Yangming, Mencius and Lao Tzu. This thought includes pure knowing (Liangzhi), ge xin (investigation of mind/heart) and voidness. In this study I examine three affinities between: 1), pure knowing and pre-conceptual, 2), ge xin and working from within, and 3), voidness and invisibility. Each pair of concepts, which are from Ancient Chinese philosophical thought and currere, respectively attend to pre-conceptual realm, adopt turning inward attitude, and notice the unnoticed. The two ideas are different in some ways, and such differences will be discussed in the paper. This study may improve the level of objectivity of currere by identifying the connection and showing the convergence of the two ideas; and I argue certain thoughts tend to transcend the boundary between the East and the West. The association of the two thoughts further illustrates the value of currere, provides a more international understanding of currere, and hears in a different key the soundness of currere.

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