In The Dialects, when Confucius responds numerous times to his disciples asking what ren is, Confucius always offers a way to practice ren. Confucius responds in the same way when asked about other important concepts Hence, The Dialects is a book of moral cultivation. Thus it is a book of philosophical teaching for life, much more than just a philosophy. Confucius lays the foundation of practical approach for doing philosophy.
In moral practice, life starts an upward and expanding development and revealing a richer and richer horizon and life world. When Confucius talks about the stages of his own life it is an upward development of his life in “realizing saintliness through practicing ren,” and ultimately arrives the state of a sage at seventy. And, through his moral practice of “realizing Heaven (Dao) through practicing ren,” Confucius achieved the highest level of life by realizing personally the Heavenly Mandate or Dao in his life. It is a practical way of interpreting the Dao and thus a hermeneutic of Dao or the highest Being. I call this a moral cultivation hermeneutic of Dao. In moral practice, the heart/mind of the person resolves with the object and the other, and unify the world as One without a subject-object dichotomy, It is different and fares better in hermeneutic of the world than the western way of understanding the world with theoretical reason. For, the latter could not be totally free from limited and biased subject-object dichotomy and could never achieve a state of egoless holistic world view. Thus moral cultivation hermeneutic is a distinctive way of understanding the human life and the world and is the way of transcending the limitation of theoretical reason.