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An Introduction to Religion in China - Essay Example

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The people of China were residents of village areas in the pre-modern times. Uniquely they followed a shared culture which allowed them to be identifiable wherever they went…
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An Introduction to Religion in China

Download file to see previous pages... Other reasons also come to play their part as well and they will be discusses later on (De et al 73). In China religion was something of a taboo because practicing any single faith was considered incorrect. It was more of a pluralistic society which was against allowing members to adhere to any organization. They were more practicing in their cultural customs and believed in following one particular family as a dynasty with its specific rules of living and policies of the state. Scholars still indulge in the argument about China having a religion or not from the time the country took its shape on the planet. Various terms which are now associated with legendary and traditional practices are considered to be the earliest form of value-drilling such as Buddhism and Confucianism, which help in understanding the culture of China even better (De et al 74). Starting with the teaching of Confucianism which goes back to the 551 BCE, one will observe that it was an attempt to revive the golden age. Kong Qui who came to be known as Confucius was inspired to follow the rituals of the ancient people. He exercised ethical force to make his dynasty follow the same rituals and make these practices common amongst the people. These practices included: i. Consciousness to do the right thing ii. Be loyal to the superiors iii. Be benevolent towards each other The rituals were known as “li” which, if practiced, largely affected the role of the individuals in the society and so did their status. Hence, the deities of worshipping were divided into various classes according to the level of peoples’ performance. Kong Qui was the sole transmitter of the social hierarchies and rituals who stood the weight of the revival of the ancient times. His teachings included the lessons included in the previous books and the people who followed him started associating the teachings as Confucianism. During the late imperial age, the performances in China were remarkably at their peak and elaborated with various local opera genre and solo performances. Since rituals had been the bedrock of Confucianism, during the time of Tang dynasty, theatricals of all kinds became eminent. For Father Evariste Hue, a European traveler who had lived in China for years exclaimed that China looks more like a fair for amusement of people (De et al 75). Countless works of literature depicted the Chinese tradition including “Mulian zhuan”. This opera is considered the best amongst other village performances. In 1929 a performance was recorded in the recital form which was organized and created by the Ding County’s experienced village actors in Hebei. The Ding County “yangge” was not a valuable evidence of popular culture. The themes of political righteousness and loyalty are absent while there is much farce and romance to discuss (De et al 104). Right after Kong Qui’s era or even during his time which came considered an overlapping of the phase, the concept of Daoism began to emerge. This was all about patience and seeing life as a whole despite all the chaos surrounding it. Those persons or hermits who had a connection with the previous teachings including Confucianism were asked to escape the civilization. This made Daoism the most complex tradition especially for the current times. As time passed and people became more accustomed to the modern world the government asked the people to establish temples for every community so that those who wanted to practice Daoism or the teachings of another tradition including Buddhism could do so with peace and strengthen their network (De et al 92). The teachings Buddha emerged next in line and were commonly known among the Chinese as Fojiao. Buddha is ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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