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Rod Williams

on 7 October 2017

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Transcript of Confucianism

The Dao in confucianism
Daoist teachings had an influence on Confucius and his teachings
The Dao of primary interest is the Dao within the human world
Right relationships; social harmony
Only humans do not automatically become what they should be
Need training in virtue
China consisted of small kingdoms- not single empire
Born approximately 551 B.C.
His name was Kong Qiu
Later became known as Kong Fuzi- "Master Kong"
Born into noble family that fled political danger
Father died young; raised by mother to be educated
Began teaching after death of his mother
confucian values
Each human is capable of being good, refined, and even great
Cannot achieve in isolation; relationships are vital (unlike Daoism)
Needed to go beyond just social interaction
Rigorous education; cultivate the intellect
Poetry, music, art, manners, ritual
Perfect society- everyone cared for
confucian literature
Confucian development
Major Confucian Schools of Philosophy
Mencius (Meng Tzu)- taught Confucius, but was influenced by Daoism's optimism in human nature
Xunzi- pessimistic about human nature; believed humans were selfish; education was vital
Mohist (Mo Tzu)- similar to Xunzi; anti-war, wanted more laws to control people
Legalists- Held an even more dim view of humans; people are evil
modern confucianism
Lost government support about 100 years ago
No longer a formal education
Western influences; scientific knowledge
Communist takeover in 1949
Seen as elitism
Seen as valuing
males over females
Focuses on the old
Cultural revolution
The Communist hate for old-fashioned
thinking pushed Confucianism underground.
The freedom experienced in Taiwan and South Korea have allowed Confucianism to remain.
Confucian ideals still remain, but with modern aspects applied. Women's roles have expanded and curricula have added more science.
It remains popular due to its focus on correct behavior and ethical teachings.
Daoism Confucianism
Everything is part of a Although nature is as it
rhythm in nature- the Dao should be, humans do not
automatically become what
they should be

Humans come into union with Main concern is the Dao
the Dao through nature within the human world

Warn against education Emphasize education/
Became a government official around 500 B.C.
Was believed to have married and had son and daughter
Died approximately 479 B.C.
Lived in a time of great social turmoil in China
Disintegration of feudal system
Social disorder
Seeing the turmoil, Confucius became determined to find ways for society to function properly; harmony would nurture excellent individuals
The Five Great Realtionships

Father - Son
Elder Brother - Younger Brother
Husband - Wife
Elder - Younger or Friend - Friend
Ruler - Subject
These relationships establish a sense of duty and define each individual's role in society
Good manners; strict etiquette & formal interactions
Gift-giving is an important part of culture
Bowing is an art form
Excellence is manifested by practicing the five Great virtues of confucianism

ren- sympathy, empathy benevolence, kindness
li- propriety; doing what is appropriate; unselfish
shu- reciprocity; similar to golden rule
xiao- devotion to parents & ancestors; children
wen- culture; all of the arts

also stresses many other virtues: loyalty, concensus, hard work, thrift, honesty, uprightness, emotional control.
sincerity means to choose naturally and do what is correct for society; restrain selfish desires.
The Five Classics & Four Books

The Book of History
- Kings from 1100-256 B.C.
The Book of Poetry
- 300 select poems
The Book of Changes
I Ching
The Book of Rites
- Ancient ceremonies & meanings
The Spring & Autumn Annals
- Local historical records
The Four Books

The Analects (Lun Yu)- Collected sayings of Confucius
The Great Learning (Daxue)- Discussion of the noble character; personal virtue
The Doctrine of the Mean (Chung Yung)- Taken from the Book of Rites; mystical side of Confucianism; equilibrium
The Mencius (Mengzi)- Teachings of Mencius; lived several hundred years after Confucius
The writings of Confucianism were produced in layers over a long period of time. These were used as curriculum in Chinese culture and education for many years.
Confucianism became the official state policy during the Han Dynasty (206 B.C. to 220 AD)
Government officials were required to attend Confucian schools
Seen as a way of uniting the country
Confucian thought began to gain recognition
Buddhism's entrance into China (1st century) created challenges for Confucian teachings
Seen by Confucians as being deficient
Held a great appeal to many people
Confucianism began to function more and more like a religion than pure philosophy
By the 7th century, every province in China was expected to establish a Confucian temple and support regular ceremonies
Neo-Confucianism (1,000 AD)- became a much more enriched practice; new emphasis on teaching; added writings and commentaries
By the end of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), temples and ceremonies had become simpler or sparse
Full transcript