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Discuss Chinese cosmology and its meanings and implications in early Chinese political culture - Essay Example

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Discuss Chinese cosmology and its meanings and implications in early Chinese political culture Introduction According to Chinese cosmology, objects and events are interconnected with each other, echoing and interacting with each other and not affected by external elements…
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Discuss Chinese cosmology and its meanings and implications in early Chinese political culture
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Download file to see previous pages These phases also refer to the different applications of reality, including the five directions, the five tastes, smells, colours, viscera and the five classifications of flora and fauna (Faure, 2005). Such general theme applies a suspension of thought with everything having its place and each place having a corresponding value. In effect, to find something means discovering and controlling it. These elements of cosmology will be discussed based on its meanings and implications in early Chinese political culture. A general background of Chinese cosmology will first be established, and then followed by more specific discussions on political culture during the early Chinese period. Body Chinese cosmology is based on the concept of cosmic order, which is the foundation of all existence, and also the primary rule in all cosmic relations and developments. The universe is therefore considered a self-contained and dynamic object operating based on its basic pattern. Such pattern has often been considered as Dao by Chinese philosophers (Liu, 2006). This Dao has various interrelated elements. The term “way” has been related to “path” or “road” (Liu, 2006). Way is therefore related to the proper or the right way of acting or doing something or in another sense, the proper order which emanates in doing something right. Dao implies an all encompassing entelechy, a life-sustaining force supporting the creation of various things (Liu, 2006). Dao in effect, covers the whole cosmos from its birth or creation. Moreover, Dao refers to cosmic order and in some ways, is considered the truth or reality. Within the holistic cosmic understanding, this cosmic order covers majority of human relations and affairs (Liu, 2006). In effect, Dao includes a moral implication, being the proper way of states taking part in the human world. As Dao is considered the “right way,” it also represents the way which should be taken by individuals. In the more overreaching sense, Dao represents the highest moral standard for humans. Qi is also another element of Chinese cosmology, very much relating to the concept of Dao. There is no definite English translation for qi, but in general it is understood as something referring to energy, life-flows, and spirit (Liu, 2006). Chinese cosmology considers qi as a precursor to matter with the elemental breaking up of qi forming matter. All matters are made up of qi and levels of purity often indicate the different degrees of existence (Liu, 2006). Humans are perceived as possessing the purest qi with lower animals having less pure qi. Qi breaks down, however it is never consumed or diminished (Ames, 2005). Qi covers the universe with the universe representing the totality of qi being constantly mobilized and changed. The cosmos is therefore perceived as inclusive of qi without having a will or mind of its own (Ames, 2005). Such force covers most aspects of the cosmos, with all matters being connected as a strong organic whole. Chinese cosmology has been considered correlative with cosmologies being understood as frameworks of ideas which manage the universe as an ordered tool, evaluating it in relation to space, time, and motion, and populating it with humans, spirits, gods, and demons (Wang, 2000). Chinese cosmology therefore includes a comprehensive system of connected networks, supported by interlinked pairs (based on Yin-Yang), fours (based on the four directions), fives, (based on five phrases or Wuxing), and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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