An Introduction to Confucianism (Introduction to Religion)

An Introduction to Confucianism (Introduction to Religion)

Xinzhong Yao

Language: English

Pages: 361

ISBN: 0521644305

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Taking into account the long history and wide range of Confucian Studies, this book introduces Confucianism - initiated in China by Confucius (551 BC-479 BC) - primarily as a philosophical and religious tradition. It pays attention to Confucianism in both the West and the East, focussing on the tradition's doctrines, schools, rituals, sacred places and terminology, but also stressing the adaptations, transformations and new thinking taking place in modern times. Xinzhong Yao presents Confucianism as a tradition with many dimensions and as an ancient tradition with contemporary appeal. This gives the reader a richer and clearer view of how Confucianism functioned in the past and of what it means in the present. A Chinese scholar based in the West, he draws together the many strands of Confucianism in a style accessible to students, teachers, and general readers interested in one of the world's major religious traditions.

Foreign Affairs (July 2013/August 2013)

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introduction to Confucianism Due to the overwhelming position of Neo-Confucianism, the Buddhists of the Song–Ming Dynasties became even more eager to accommodate themselves to the Confucian doctrine. Zhi Yuan (976–1022) of Tian Tai Buddhist School explained the Buddhist Middle Way as the Confucian Mean ( zhongyong), and called himself the ‘Master of the Mean’. He pointed out that all his writings were based on Confucian principles, because without the teaching of Confucius, the state would

self-examination, and thus from the western to the eastern. He argued that the philosophy of life was characteristic of intuition, subjectivism, syncretism and freewill, while science bore the converse of these charac- teristics. This is why science is powerless in the face of the problems of how to live. Science has its values; yet it would be damaging if it was adopted blindly. Zhang believed that if China adopted European scientism, China would have to follow the western countries to

responsibility for a better world and for a secured future, not in the hands of a supremely detached God, but in the hands of ordinarily engaged humans (Yao, 1996a: 15). In this sense, Confucianism opens up a diCerent approach to the meaning of life and the meaning of death. When Zengzi felt a resting peace at his impending death ( Lunyu, 8: 3–7), he demon- strated the completion of his mission in the world. When Fan Zhongyan (989–1052) said that he was the first to be concerned with the

Transliteration table Pinyin spellings Other systems including Chinese characters Korean and Japanese spellings An Hyang Anle Xiansheng ! anle wo badao bagua xiangdang ! bakufu baihu tong bailu dong baijia Baopuzi Pao P’u-tzu benran zhi xing ! benxin boshi po-shih boshidô bumbu-funi ! buxiu Cao Duan chan ch’an/zen changan chanjiao 309 Transliteration table Pinyin spellings Other systems including Chinese characters Korean and Japanese spellings Chen Duxiu

xin ruxue see Modern New Harmony 12, 142; of Heaven 12, 24, Confucianism 30, 50, 124, 139, 140–54, 158–60, Xiang Xiu xv, 90, 95 164, 165, 169, 175, 177, 195, 217; xiao see filial piety of humanity see Way of Humans; of Xiao Jing see Book of Filial Piety Humans 12, 50, 139, 140, 142, 149, xiao ren 215, see morally inferior man 153–5, 160, 165, 217; of life 50; of xiao si see small sacrifice Nature 149, 150; of Sages 63; of the Xie Lingyun 95 ancients 35; of the early kings 135; of

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