History assignment essay: Positive and negative influence of the Confucian teachings on Chinese Culture.
After the fall of Han Dynasty Buddhism spread like wild fire in China and under the Buddhist idea influence there was emergence of Confucian school of idealist philosophy during the Ming and Song dynasty in China. The idealism which is promoted by Confucianism is to develop or create a society in which just the right principles prevail and they have tried to materialize the ideal by putting best efforts in the world. According to the idealism followed by Confucian, the emotional development, physical and mental development is followed by spiritual development. Thus one must first learn to respect and understand oneself along with learning to honour oneself as goes on with their daily business. This can be analysed form the sayings of Confucius which said that if you do not know how to live like a person , then how can you serve the spirit?. Therefore the main stress in Confucianism is on being spiritual rather than being religious.
The core values have supposed to have both positive as well as negative impacts on the history and culture of China, the reason being the concept of Confucius became very detrimental and negative for the children as well as women. The contemporary Confucians simple prescribe that the remedy for this problem is family conflict resolution and the younger generation according to their views do not have any right to express their opinions in front of their elders. According to the social standards drafted by Confucianism in China the abused children as well as women do not have any right and they are still expected to act like submissive souls.
The power of Confucianism culturally would not have been so much if the traditions and the memory had been constantly revised. The reverence for the Confucianism by the Chinese people has varied from one generation to another, but they never ever felt the need or the freedom to bring about changes to his teachings and life. It has been found at even at the end of twentieth century too the influence of Confucius’s culture on the social life and Chinese culture is very strong and powerful. The impact is so concrete that as observed by Tu Wei-Ming (1990) the Confucius traditions are still the defining characteristics of the mentality of Chinese people.
Even the critique of Chinese culture, politico-economic reforms and the social revolution in the modern china has severely gone against the negative impact it has on the Chinese economic activities. However some of the great economic achievements also came in a Confucian society where agriculture and handicraft flourished in ancient China during the Confucian period. The doctrine given by Confucius gave theoretical basis for the development of civil government system and the elitist form of politics developed in the feudal society of China. The feudal order and security maintained by the Confucianism helped in prevailing law and order by removing crime and chaos from China.
Moreover the Confucians gave great importance to education so they built lot many schools all over China and they also urged people to study. This helped the cultural level of the whole society in pre-modern China to develop which led to higher level of common intelligence amongst the Chinese people. In the traditions of Confucianism it is mentioned that family is not just a social unit of life and production rather it is a social being with the help of which the life of mankind can exist and reproduce. Thus it is evident that the ethics of Confucius helped in cultivating the virtues of thriftiness amongst the Chinese. Although it manifested and forced people to subjugate their innate human desires for happy life but along with that Confucianism also nurtured the finest quality of thriftiness amongst the people by the opposition of extremist attitude towards hedonism.
But along with these positive impacts it also had negative impact on Chinese culture as Confucianism limited the growth of Chinese economy due to the sphere of feudal economy created by Confucianism. It gave rise to a patriarchal and feudal society which is ruled by monarch where the government officials took or rather extorted taxes from common people and there was no freedom for common man in China due to the ideas of Confucianism. But along with these positives and negatives if the Chinese culture needs to grow then they need to come out of these Confucianism related idealism and grow both culturally as well as economically.
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