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'His passion was said to be for the good of the people...' - '..fatalism .. an irresponsible belief..'

Posted by ProjectC 
'His passion was said to be for the good of the people ... Mozi believed in love for all mankind. As long as something benefits mankind, Mozi will pursue it...'

'[Mozi] was schooled in Confucianism in his early years but he viewed Confucianism as being too fatalistic and emphasizing too much on elaborate celebrations and funerals which he felt were detrimental to the livelihood and productivity of common people. He managed to attract a large following during his lifetime which rivaled that of Confucius. His followers – mostly technicians and craftspeople – were organized in a disciplined order that studied both Mozi's philosophical and technical writings.

According to some accounts of the popular understanding of Mozi at the time, he had been hailed by many as the greatest hero to come from Henan. His passion was said to be for the good of the people, without concern for personal gain or even his own life or death. His tireless contribution to society was praised by many, including Confucius' disciple Mengzi. Mengzi wrote in that Mozi believed in love for all mankind. As long as something benefits mankind, Mozi will pursue it even if it means hurting his head or his feet. Zhang Tai Tan said that in terms of moral virtue, even Confucius and Laozi cannot compare to Mozi.

His pacifism led Mozi to travel from one crisis zone to another throughout the ravaged landscape of the Warring States, trying to dissuade rulers from their plans of conquest. According to the chapter "Gongshu" in Mozi, he once walked for ten days to the state of Chu in order to forestall an attack on the state of Song. At the Chu court, Mozi engaged in nine simulated war games with Gongshu Ban, the chief military strategist of Chu, and overturned each one of his stratagems. When Gongshu Ban threatened him with death, Mozi informed the king that his disciples had already trained the soldiers of Song in his fortification methods, so it would be useless to kill him. The Chu king was forced to call off the war. On the way back, however, the soldiers of Song, not recognizing him, would not allow Mozi to enter their city, and he had to spend a night freezing in the rain. After this episode, he also stopped the state of Qi from attacking the state of Lu. He taught that defense of a city does not depend only on fortification, weaponry and food supply. It was also important to keep talented people close by and to put trust in them.

...

In contrast to those of Confucius, Mozi's moral teachings emphasized self-reflection and authenticity rather than obedience to ritual.'

- Wikipedia, Mozi


'In summary, fatalism, the belief that all outcomes are predestined or fated to occur, is an irresponsible belief...'

Against Fatalism

Mozi disagrees with the fatalistic mindset of people, accusing the mindset of bringing about poverty and sufferings. To argue against this attitude, Mozi used three criteria (San Biao) to assess the correctness of views. These were:[2]

1. Assessing them based on history
2. Assessing them based on the experiences of common, average people
3. Assessing their usefulness by applying them in law or politics[2]

In summary, fatalism, the belief that all outcomes are predestined or fated to occur, is an irresponsible belief espoused by those who refuse to acknowledge that their own sinfulness has caused the hardships of their lives. Prosperity or poverty are directly correlated with either virtue or sinfulness, respectively; not fate. Mozi calls fatalism a heresy which needs to be destroyed.

- Wikipedia, Mohism - Against Fatalism


*** Action & Freedom

'The words freedom and liberty signified for the most eminent representatives of mankind one of the most precious and desirable goods. Today it is fashionable to sneer at them. They are, trumpets the modern sage, "slippery" notions and "bourgeois" prejudices.

Freedom and liberty are not to be found in nature. In nature there is no phenomenon to which these terms could be meaningfully applied. Whatever man does, he can never free himself from the restraints which nature imposes upon him. If he wants to succeed in acting, he must submit unconditionally to the laws of nature.

Freedom and liberty always refer to interhuman relations. A man is free as far as he can live and get on without being at the mercy of arbitrary decisions on the part of other people. In the frame of society everybody depends upon his fellow citizens. Social man cannot become independent without forsaking all the advantages of social cooperation.'

- Ludwig von Mises, Chapter Two - The Individual in Society