Mencius of Confucianism and Jonathan Edwards of Protestant Christianity
Lin, Ai. “Mencius of Confucianism and Jonathan Edwards of Protestant Christianity”, Boston College, 2013. http://hdl.handle.net/2345/3158.
Intellectuals' different self-understandings contribute to their development of different views on the people in society. And such different attitudes remarkably affect their ways of engaging their people in the specific cultural contexts. In the process of interactions, people's characters were established in their specific environments. Admittedly, intellectuals acted as intermediary between the core values/beliefs and the people. Fundamentally and ultimately it is our conceptions of God and our thinking of messages from Heaven that determines not only intellectual's self-awareness and their views on the people, but also people's actual self-understanding. I am trying to demonstrate that those lacking of sense of self-understanding were so tough to develop public awareness and take initiatives in civic participation, just like people in traditional Confucian society in ancient China. People of colonial New England were directed to cultivate their personal relationships with God and so also their sense of the self, which is compact with their active civic society.