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Chinese concept of complementary dualism (yin and yang) as a pathway to respect for diversity in the modern world

International Social Science Journal (Chinese Edition)

No.1, 2022

 

Chinese concept of complementary dualism (yin and yang) as a pathway to respect for diversity in the modern world

(Abstract)

 

John Anthony Carty

 

The subject of Alternative Modernities, is the foundation point from which one has to understand the huge divide between China and the West around the so-called “rules-based international order.” The international legal order based on a Western sense of relations, which is based on radical individualism, is on the breakdown. This can and does only lead to whimsical unilateralism. The sense of relations based on radical individualism is rooted in the radically subjective individualism of the European Enlightenment. The Chinese idea of complementary dualism brings with it the pathway to respect for diversity among nations, as among individual persons. The idea was a recognition that societies are not all the same, that they cannot be completely assimilated to one another, and there will always be a nervous tension and continuing diversity among them.