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이 글은 남명 조식의 실천윤리를 그의 상소를 중심으로 살펴본 것이다. 남명 조식은 우리나라의 많은 선비들 가운데에서도 道學을 실천한 선비정신의 대명사로 꼽힌다. 儒의 본래적 의미에서 볼 때, 道學은 修己를 넘어 治人의 실천에까지 이르러야 한다. 남명의 학문은 儒者로서 敬으로 修己하고 義로 治人하고자 하였으며, 이를 삶에서 실천하고자 노력하였다. 16세기 士禍의 시기, 남명은 철저히 義에 근거한 출처관을 따라 處士로서의 삶을 선택하였지만 결코 현실정치와 백성에 대한 관심을 포기하지 않았다. 그는 上疏를 통해 적극적으로 자신의 정치적 입장을 표명하였는데, 乙卯辭職疏, 丁卯辭職呈承政院狀, 戊辰封事, 謝宜賜食物疏 등이 대표적이다. 그의 상소에는 현실에 대한 냉철한 인식을 바탕으로 한, 백성들에 대한 애민사상, 권력에 대한 비판의식 등 실천윤리의 성격이 잘 드러나 있다.


The purpose of this study is to analyze the practical ethics in memorial to the king of Nammyeong[南冥] Jo Sik[曺植]. Nammyeong Jo Sik is a synonym with the seonbi spirit, and the greatest seonbi among other scholars in the Joseon dynasty. The original mean of Yu[儒] is to accept and to practice needs from the people of all nations. The first stage is cultivation of mind, the next is governing well. The two stages ultimately must meet. Nammyeong’s studies is enriched on both side. He try to cultivate the mind inside with Gyeong[敬], and to treat other people outside with Yui[義]. He persevered in one’s efforts to put his thoughts into practice in daily life. The 16th century, The age of Sahwa[士禍] is a massacre of scholars and he threw his office up without any regrets as the principle of his righteousness. He had the political and moral point of views as scholar in retirement. However, he is not indifferent to political landscape and the people in those days. He positively made an expression of political standpoint, took the way of the memorial to the King. He presents four memorials to the King. There are Eulmyo of the memorials to the King for the resignation[乙卯辭職疏], Jeongmyo of the memorial to the Seungjeongwon for the resignation[丁卯辭職呈承政院狀], Mujin of the hidden memorial to the King for the resignation[戊辰封事], the memorial to the King as a token of gratitude giving food[謝宜賜食物疏]. It is clearly discovered critical cognition into political affairs of those days, the thoughts loving the people, the viewpoint of severe criticism on power. His expression are causing a debate, but his memorials to the King is a touchstone to make us realize seonbi spirit is alive and well.