Exam 2 Confucianism is a philosophical system that was developed by Confucius. It mainly focuses on humanism i. e. treating others well. This can be described by Confucian idea “Ren” which means showing humanity by acting appropriately and “benevolently toward others” (lecture, Oct 2). It basically means to love others. Confucius defines an ideal person as the one who knows how to act nicely in all situations (Analects, 165). The master said, A young man should be a good son at home and an obedient young man abroad, sparing of speech but trustworthy in what he says, and should love the ultitude at large but cultivate the friendship of his fellow men” (Analects, 165). This statement describes what an ideal person has to be like. He has to be true and honest with his relations, and be responsible toward them. The 5 main relationships are between a parent and child, husband and wife, ruler and subject, between siblings, and friend to friend.
An ideal person will maintain his relations responsibly. These relationships play an important role in connecting one person to another, and lead to harmony in society. Performing sacred rites and education are also important for Confucius. Once a person becomes a responsible and principled human being, he is called “Junzi” which means a gentleman or an accomplished person or a scholar (lecture, Oct 2). Confucius emphasized social harmony by stressing more on interpersonal values and proper behavior.
Unlike the Chinese legalists that said social harmony can be achieved through strict laws and rewards, and the Mohists that said it could be achieved through love among people, Confucius believed that social harmony can be achieved by emphasizing sacred rites and education because if everyone learns the humanistic values, they can act according to what they learned, nd then make rational decisions. A person needs to learn these values in order to become a gentleman. He also needs to know his place in the family and the society, and perform the required duties to keep a positive relationship.
The recognition of the relation is the key point because that is what will lead to the right behavior toward the relationship. An accomplished person needs to be able to understand the use of language meaning that he needs to know how to use language wisely and correctly. (lecture, Oct 2) The phrase from Confucius’s Analects: “The master said, When you meet someone better than yourself, turn your thoughts to becoming his equal… When you meet someone not as good as you are, look within and examine your own self” shows that Confucius believed in learning from others (Analects, 166).
He believed in learning the good points from others and if you find something bad in others, you can find that in yourself and correct it to become an accomplished person with moral values and humanity (Analects, 167). Practicing arts and culture (Wen) such as music can also help to bring harmony to thoughts by appreciating those traditions (lecture, Oct 7). These are the processes that a person needs to go over in order to become an ideal person and achieve social harmony. According to Daoism an ideal person has three key ideas: Dao, Wu-Wei, and Ziran.
An ideal person is the one who does things according to the way they are naturally done (Dao), acts without agenda (Wu-Wei) by working with the natural processes, and be the own self (Ziran) are similar but the only difference is that in wu-wei there is no action involved, you let things happen by themselves, and in ziran you are actually acting naturally. (lecture, Oct 7) The goal of Daoism is to be in harmony with the nature. To be in harmony with Qi, a balance of Yin and Yang is needed.
Qi is the generating force that is in every living thing that connects them to universe. Yin and Yang are the opposite forces of each other that create a rhythm when they interplay, but one cannot exist without the other. So if one has Yin but not Yang, harmony will not be achieved because Qi is not generated. “The goal should be to harmonize one’s own qi with the qi of universe”. And a balance is needed between yin and yang to achieve harmony. Practicing Taichi which is a form of physical exercise is also important for health in Daoism, and it helps to achieve harmony.
Philosophers of Daoism such as Laozi and Zhuangzi are the competitors of Confucius, and following their teachings of Daoism can help a person to become an ideal person in terms of Daoism. (lecture, Oct 7) Confucianism and Daoism differ in many subjects. Both use the word “Dao”, but they have different meanings. Dao in Confucianism means the right way of performing human activity and moral activities that were performed by the people from past, that will help to bring harmony in the society (lecture, Oct. 7). While in Daoism it eans to make way according to the way things are naturally. De” in Confucianism means when a person behaves with high moral standards by being truly what he is. While in Daoism it is the power of the things to be themselves when they make a way to the way things are naturally. (lecture, Oct 7) Both have their own sets of values. While Confucianism focuses more on developing moral values, Daoism focuses more on emphasis in naturalness of human being for becoming an ideal person (lecture, Oct 9). In Confucianism an ideal person needs to have a set of principles of what is right and wrong, and then act according to it.
Daoism focuses more on acting without any principles and leaves everything on the nature. An ideal person according to Confucianism has a self that is “social”, and it respects the relations like a relation to parent, or sibling, or a friend, etc, and values social harmony. In Daoism the self of an ideal person is completely natural and is “individual”, but is in harmony with the nature. (lecture, Oct 9) Gentle man- a scholar Social harmony last paragraph De and Dao- compare and contrast in Junzi – Translated as “rites,” “propriety,” “ritual,” or “appropriate behavior” “Holy Rite”.
Appropriate behavior within the five constant relationships out of which society is built. ??? parent-child ??? husband-wife ??? elder-younger sibling ??? friend-friend Wen- The arts??”specifically music, literature, song/poetry, painting??” practiced by the chon tzu. The practice of wen brings harmony to thoughts and feelings by appreciating and renewing tradition Li- rites Chun Tzu- a man with highest ethical standards, prince. Ren Cen)- goodness, benevolence 5 realtionships Daoism Chi- Chinese word for vital or generative force that is a matter-energy throughout the universe and within each thing or person.
The goal is to harmonize one’s own qi with the qi of the universe. Yin and Yang: The Chinese name for two complementary but opposite forces in the the two in any given situation Balancing yin and yang is harmony. Connect it with chi and acupuncture (become an ideal person) wu wei- action through non action. The principle teaches that unnecessary action is usually not productive. Instead, it urges aligning one s inner self in harmony with the Tao, so that energy and activity will flow spontaneously and naturally. (how to become ideal person) The goal of Taoists is to attain harmony with the Tao.
This attainment of harmony with the Tao is also seen as living in accord with nature. Taoism is profound in its naturalism. Nature is something that should not be exploited and abused, it should be befriended not conquered. The ideal man in Taoism is one who through the naturalness of his existence became self-sufficient and not dependent upon wealth or social realms. It was this way that true happiness could be found Ziran- “self” or “auto-” + “being so” Daoist term for the Way of Nature to be emulated by the Daoist sage: the “spontaneity’ of acting “naturally’ so that things “automatically happen of hemselves. (ideal person) Being in harmony with Ying and yang, has qi, through the practice of Taichi, practicing Taichi brings you to harmony with nature, and that’s the goal of Taoism. Question: In her book on Indian philosophy, Sue Hamilton argued that Indian philosophy generally has a soteriological or personally transformative purpose, meaning that philosophy is supposed to make the person a better person in some way. Apply that thesis to Chinese philosophy. In what sense do both Confucian and Daoist philosophies try to make people better or more sagely? Compare and contrast
Confucianism and Daoism in terms of: (b) the process by which one can become such a person. Note: This is an exam, not a term paper. Therefore, to answer the question requires nothing other than material from assigned readings and lectures. No special research is needed. To cite those materials you can simply use the following system of notation: For articles, Just put author’s last name plus page number in parentheses, for example: (Ames, 23) For material from lectures, Just state “lecture” plus date of the lecture as given on the title pages of the PowerPoint slides, for example (lecture, Aug 1) No need for bibliography at end.
Please remember the plagiarism warning given on the syllabus. In submitting your paper, be sure each page is numbered with you name on it and that the pages are stapled together (not paper-clipped). That is the best way to ensure your pages are kept together and you can get full credit. Compare and Contrast De and Dao- compare and contrast in last paragraph Confucianism focuses more on developing moral values, while Daoism focuses more on emphasis on naturalness and spontaneity for becoming an ideal person. (Oct 9)