Synthetic Co-Presentness of Past and Present: Notes on 《Sukheungyamaejam(夙興夜寐箴)》
* VR Construction Project for Toegye’s Ten Diagrams on Sage Learning: 4th Seminar_ Presentation script, 2021
愧屋漏爲無忝(As long as you are not ashamed in a room where no one is looking, there is no shame in heaven.) - ≪詩經≫ 大雅 抑篇
莫見乎隱 莫顯乎微(There is nothing more visible than the hidden, nothing more revealing than the subtle.) - ≪中庸≫ 12th chapter
In the Sage-operating system, the sense of fear and abtaining are virtual rather than real, unlike what fear does in the Hobbesian social contract model. However, the functional aspect of fear is very real because this affect moves individuals in a certain way. In this sense, virtuality here is real. The fear here is aroused from the inside of the history and time engraved on the inside of the individual rather than being forcibly granted from the outside. and make you afraid In this respect, this study grasps the affect of fear as essential for the Sage-operating system, but does so in the sense of the realization of the virtual.
Also, the source of fear is rooted in the past rather than the future. These are the call of Sage who manifested as the ghost of the past. This fear is not the future possibility of harming me, but the fear of not following the right path. This inherent and recursive fear provides the basis for the circular view of time. Living well according to this cyclical rhythm of time is the goal of elementary learning, but this also makes us difficult to distance ourselves from the very time. In other words, it becomes difficult to think about the future in the contemporary sense. Thus, there arises a need to discern this immanence outside of its immanent temporality.
We can introduce an artificial perspective of the future into the cyclical and immanent time of Confucianism, thus may review the matter of affect and the virtual in the Sage-operating system of Confucian subjects with the concept of synthetic coexistence of the past and the present. This is because we can perceive an object better when we are separated from it, than when we are combined with it. Once we are distanced from the immanence of temporality, we may read Humanity(禮) in Confucian rituals as a technique of spiritualism or demodulation, beyond the usual explanation of calling it 'naming' or 'calling names'.
For demodulation, not only the logic revealed on the surface, but also the underlying names must be understood. Hypothetical distancing through the subjunctive future tense begins by treating the theory of Sage learning as a hypothesis or an artifact rather than a firm natural principle, and examining the socio-cultural situation of that era arranged in a specific way. Since the theme of temporal conjunction and immanence of time is prominent in 《Sukheungyamaejam》, it is suitable to explore the above problems with it. 《Sukheungyamaejam》 best shows the aspect of Gymnasium in Sage learning in that the regular daily routines are arranged in chronological order from morning to night. Specifically, the appearance of an ancestor's ghost that composites the past and the present, or the "restorative atmosphere of the night" that causes ambiguity in interpretation is also mentioned.
If we treat Confucianism as an artificially constructed Human operating system and not just a natural principle, we can discern the memories and perceptions at the physical and muscular levels that move us in certain directions without our awareness. This discernment, seeing Sage learning as Human engineering, will help us to discern the very ways in which Neo-Confucianism works, affecting even those who are not conscious of it. In other words, we will be able to perceive the true immanence of the Gymnasium, which is ‘already always there’ as a memory of habits and muscles.