心 – Chinese philosophy and culture

xīn 心

Heart / Mind

“心”是人之情感、认识和价值的基础,生命的主宰。与耳、目、鼻、口等被动地感知外物不同,“心”具有思考的能力,可以辨别和整理感官所获得的材料,进行知识和道德判断。孟子认为“心”包含恻隐、辞让、羞恶、是非等四端,道德实践的核心就是保存并扩充人固有的善心。道家则认为虚静是心的根本状态,如静止之水,由此可以把握天地万物的本原。

The heart, a vital organ of life, underpins one’s emotions, awareness, and value judgments. Different from the ears, eyes, nose, and mouth, which sense the outer world in a passive way, the heart is capable of thinking and performing intellectual and moral evaluations on the basis of analyzing and sorting out what these organs have sensed. Mencius believed that the heart consists of four aspects: compassion, deference, sense of shame or detestation, and conscience. Preserving and expanding one’s good heart is the central aim in practicing moral teachings. According to Daoism, a serene and uncluttered heart is the highest state for a human being, much like a peaceful pool of still water. Such calmness is the way in which the heart can capture the essence of all things in the world.

引例 Citations:

◎耳目之官不思,而蔽于物。物交物,则引之而已矣。心之官则思,思则得之,不思则不得也。(《孟子·告子上》)

(耳目等器官不能思考,因而被外物的表象遮蔽。耳目与外物相接触,就会被其引向歧途。“心”这个器官能够思考,思考便能有所得,不思考便无所得。)

The sensory organs like ears and eyes cannot think. Therefore, they tend to be overwhelmed by the representation of external objects, and be led astray by those objects when coming into contact with them. The heart, however, is an organ capable of thinking. Thinking yields insight, while lack of it will get one nowhere. (Mencius)

◎心者,一身之主宰。(《朱子语类》卷五)

(心是人身体的主宰。)

Heart is the dominant organ of one’s body. (Classified Conversations of Master Zhu Xi)

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