Chinese Philosophies

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In China the cultural golden age of philosophy was the spring and autumn period as well as the warring states period, many of Chinas most famous philosophies were conceived of in these periods, including; Confucianism, Taoism and Legalism. There are countless other schools of thought of this era hence why it is commonly known as the hundred schools of thought period, which includes both the times of the spring and autumn and warring states. The majority of Chinese Philosophies are concerned with three key aspects of life (Hou, crvp.org, 16/12/2014), namely: ‘the joining of heaven and man’; ‘the practical use of knowledge’ and ‘the conjunction of sentiments and scenery’.

Firstly, I am going to talk about Confucianism and it’s importance in
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Taoism holds a similar standpoint on philosophy as Confucianism, as they are both concerned with the ‘Tao’ or ‘the way’. To say that the Tao is a way to live is putting it in its most basic sense as, especially at the time Taoism and Confucianism were both conceived, it was also considered by the ruling class as the way to rule the country and people. (Hardy, Patheos, 16/12/2014.) The Tao is quite an obscure idea and as such is very hard to describe, however in Tao Te Ching; An Illustrated Journey it is described clearly and concisely, it says; ‘The Tao is like a well: used but never used up. It is like the infinite void: filled with infinite possibilities. It is hidden but always present. I don’t know who gave birth to it. It is older than God.’ (Lao-Tzu, 1999, pg. 3.)
During the time period of the ‘hundred schools of thought’ there was a great deal of civil and political unrest and instability, and as such many people were looking for a guide, or a way to live their lives. Taoism was also conceived around the time of the ‘hundred schools of thought’ period, which was a time when a lot of differing philosophies and ideologies had a distinct effect on Chinese politics, as well as religious ideologies. Taoism however, has never reached the same level of reverence and support in China as Confucianism. (Littlejohn, Internet encyclopaedia of Philosophy,

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