Human Nature Is Good
This view on human nature was first proposed by Mencius. As Mencius saw it, human nature is the inherent moral character which a human being naturally possesses and which distinguishes him from an animal. In this sense, human nature underpins such virtues as benevolence, righteousness, sound social norms, and good judgment. However, good human nature does not automatically constitute virtuous conduct. People need to continuously cultivate good human nature in order to develop virtuous conduct.
- 孟子道性善，言必称尧、舜。 （《孟子·滕文公上》） （孟子讲述性善之说，言谈必称述尧、舜的事迹。）
When Mencius spoke about human nature being good, he always referred to the exploits of Emperor Yao and Emperor Shun.? (Mencius)
- 孟子有大功于世，以其言性善也。 （朱熹《孟子序说》引程子语） （孟子对于世间有着卓越的功绩，是因为他提出了性善之说。）
Mencius made a great contribution to the world by proposing that human nature is good.? (Zhu Xi:?An Introduction to Mencius)