Category Archives: Confucianism

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Confucianism

A philosophy developed by Confucius, an influential Chinese teacher and scholar who lived in the sixth and fifth centuries B.C. His teachings, collected in the Analects, emphasize social harmony and moral obligation. Confucianism is a philosophy, not a religion.

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Confucius

Chinese teacher and philosopher whose teachings are the foundation of Confucianism. See Confucianism.

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Four Books, the

The fundamental teachings of Confucianism.

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jen

In Confucianism, jen (pronounced “ren”) is the highest principle and translates to compassion and humanity derived from genuine love.

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li

In Confucianism, li is a virtue focused on ritual and etiquette; it applies to everything from titles of respect to proper dress and behavior.

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Tao

Pronounced “Dow.” The ever-changing energy of the universe that flows all around in the form of nature. In Taoism, Tao is unknowable and therefore cannot be defined. In Confucianism, Tao is the correct manner of conduct that stems from universal standards and ideals that govern right and wrong.

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yin/yang

A symbol from Chinese philosophies such as Taoism and Confucianism representing two forces continually interacting in humans and in the universe; balance between the two is ideal. Yin is the darker, female, passive force; yang is the lighter, male, active force.

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