ConfucianismOct 21, 1999Confucianism is a system of thought based on the teachings of a Chinese mannamed Kung Fuzi. Which is latinaized as Confucius, he lived from 551 to 479 b.c.e.
Confucius claimed that he was not original and neither were his teachings, but believedhimself to be a “creative transmitter of wisdom from the past”. He created a moral codeon based on ethics, humanity and love. Confucius philosophies emphasize the ideals oforder and harmony. With the idea that people should live in harmony both with each otherand with nature.
To achieve this, Confucius created a system of human relationships andgood government. Government to Confucius was the highest profession. He believed thatif one had a good government everyone would be happy. In addition, Confucius esteemededucation in high regards believing that through it, one could reach the high standard of agentleman..
For a religion Confucianism is very different from any other. Due to the fact thatthe Chinese see religion as a form of education. The purpose of Confucianism was mainlyto instill moral values in a person.
There is no organized church or structure, no priests, nosects, and no creed for any follow. There is no worshipping or personal relationship withgod but did recognize heaven as a force of human concern. Confucius did believe that menshould direct their own destiny. Confucius taught that harmony begins in the family, whichwas a minuet of society. In which the man of the house was like the emperor or Priest.
Confucius believed in a male dominated society were only males could lead thegovernment service. Confucius believe in ancestor devotion. The Ancestor’s names areusually kept in shrines. The duty of the father was to make sacrifices and to report anyfamily concerns to these shrines. Confucius emphasized five virtues, which are the the ideals of Confucianism. TheConfucian virtues are something that should reflect sincerity and inner spirit. The mostimportant one was ren which means “humanity” he thought that should be the ideal foreveryone to follow. Then came up with yi, “honesty” zhi, “knowledge” xin faithfulnessand li; correct behavior. Confucinism also refers to basic texts which are called the fiveclassics. The book of poetry which contains the oldest of Chinese poetry that describecommon experiences such as love,work, and war. The book of rites, consists of threeseparate ritual texts. That contains descriptions of how one must behave when attendingevents, such as weddings, funerals, banquets and sacrifices. The book of history includesdecrees, speeches, advice from counselors, and reports on similar government affairs. TheSpring and Autumn annals is a brief chronicle of events in Confucius home state. Thebook of change is a book that consists of divination, or helps the follower to foretell futureevents and understand the existence of humans and natural happenings. The Chinese always believed that the universe has always been influenced by twoopposing forces the Yin and the Yang. The two forces are always changing in power buteach are necessary in order to maintain a balance. Related to this concept also comes theidea that all things are made up of of five elements. Wood, metal, fire, water and earth,like the yin and yang this elements are always influencing each other in the balance ofnature. Using this foundation Confucius came to determine how things work together.
Later believing that this was the key for living, and maintaining harmony. This way anyone would be able to correct imbalances or disharmony.This idea was used inmedecine,nutrition,agriculture,art and literature, becoming part of Confucianism.
Although Confucianism has evolved and changed, most of its social andgovernmental ideals have prevailed to remain. They have been useful, and have becomethe building blocks that have helped the Chinese civilization be such a stable force .