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Confucianism Philosophical System - Coursework Example

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"Confucianism Philosophical System" focuses on the system that has significantly influenced the structure of East Asian society. It is originally developed by Confucius in approximately the 5th century China and since has spread throughout Korea, Taiwan, and Vietnam. …
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Download file to see previous pages Confucianism lacks a significant explanation of either death or an afterlife and is behaviorally hard to distinguish from a mere ethical institution. It is possible that some of these shortcomings in the Confucian viewpoint can be explained, and perhaps a better understanding of religion may be gained in the process. In gaining a more thorough understanding of this philosophical system, this essay considers the fundamental concepts of Confucianism, specifically ultimate reality, the nature of the self, death, and ethics.

In determining the ultimate reality of Confucian philosophy, one must grasp the Confucian concept of the Way. In this regard, it’s necessary to distinguish between the popular Taoist understanding of the Way and the Confucian version. Indeed, while Confucianism and Taoism share many traits in common, they differ in the fundamental way in which they understand how one accesses the Way. While Confucians require us to discriminate the Way in human affairs and follow it, Lao Tzu tells us to forget the way, and then we will be following it. Both Confucianism and Taoism demonstrate a fundamental concern with giving one’s life to self-cultivation rather than abstract theological ideals, yet they differ in the means that they understand how this is best accomplished. (Makeham 2003)

The Taoists believed that the ultimate reality was attained through an intuitive understanding of the Way of the universe. In this formulation, they excluded man-made forms of morality and ethics and other human-created structures. For Confucianism, the goal was to develop a more objective structure of how one should live their lives. In this sense, they were directly opposite philosophies on how best to structure one’s existence. While Taoism believed in giving way to the flow of existence, Confucianism sought to engage directly and tamper with life. Confucianism believed in developing objective standards of how one should progress with their existence. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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