Confucianism And Daoism

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From around 550 BCE to 221 BCE, China was a hotbed for philosophical and political schools of thought. This time is known as the “Hundred Schools of Thought” Period, and in this time, many tremendous and innovative philosophies sprung forth from China that would affect the land for ages to come. Three of the most prominent of these philosophies were Confucianism, Legalism, and Daoism. These three schools of thought did not only influence China, but all of East Asia, nevertheless, they were all still aimed towards the cessation to the social and political unrest that had plagued China for a sizeable portion of the Zhou dynasty. These three viewpoints on how to end the widespread turmoil afflicting the land had similar views in naming the government…show more content…
Legalism stressed the importance of law and order above all other matters. Many of the doctrines and beliefs of Legalism were formed from the ideas of Han Fei, who was actually the disciple of the Confucian philosopher Xun Zi. Xun Zi had lost faith in the Confucian belief in the inherent good of man after seeing the constant political and social turmoil of his time. He and his disciples took the realization of man’s true nature to heart and decided that there needed to be something to control the rampant self interest of man, and they decided that the way would be through a system of laws. While Confucians believe that the nature of man is inherently good, Legalists believe that the nature of man is very susceptible to bad intentions. It is the duty of the law to thwart man’s inclinations towards these bad…show more content…
Daoism revolves around the Dao, or the way, as in the way of life, nature, and the universe. The Dao is something that supposedly extends beyond practical comprehension into a more metaphysical realm of understanding. The founder of Daoism, Lao-Tzu, was apparently once a member of the Chou dynasty court, but left his occupation when he grew sick and tired of no one listening to his ideas and being embroiled in a world filled with constant warfare and suffering. He resigned to nature and became a hermit, seeking to find oneness in nature. However, before he left, the gatekeeper beseeched Lao-Tzu to record all of his teachings, and he did so, apparently writing them all down in one sitting, entrusting his work, the Tao-te ching, to the gatekeeper, and then vanishing off into the wild never to be seen again. In regards to government, Lao-Tzu said a true kingdom is only accomplished through absolute freedom. He believed that the more others are involved in governance, the more corruption seeps into the ruling force, and instead thought that individual autonomy was key to the people’s prosperity. The less active and involved the government was in everyone’s lives, the better lives lived by
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