The World Of Thought In Ancient China Analysis

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Schwartz, Keightley, and Allan all had ideas about the ancient Chinese cultural orientations that they talked about in their respective books and articles. This essay is an attempt to explain how ancestor worship or reverence, optimism, ordering, root metaphors, bureaucratic tendencies are the bases of Chinese cultural orientations.
Ancestor worship was the practice of making sacrifices to the ancestors to ask for blessings or to break a curse. In “The World of Thought in Ancient China”, Benjamin J. Schwartz, claims that ancestor worship or reverence is one of the most important aspects of the Chinese cultural orientations. “Yet the orientation to ancestor worship is so omnipresent and so central to the entire development of Chinese civilization that it warrants some separate reflection on its possible implications” (Schwartz, 20-21). He talked about the ways in which ancestor worship shaped much of Chinese culture. The Chinese used divinations to try and understand their world. The king would burn animal bones or
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Allen’s book is based on the idea of the Chinese having root metaphors that are specific to their culture. Her thesis is that, “Nevertheless, by recognizing the root metaphors of Chinese thought, we can at least begin to understand the Chinese terminology more accurately and this should enable us to interpret the text and the philosophy that they express more clearly” (Allan, 18). Allan focuses mostly on water as a root metaphor for the Chinese. In “The World of Thought in Ancient China” Schwartz suggests that there are many metaphors used, including, “As a metaphor for the cosmos, it suggests a world of entities and energies held together in familial harmony under the authority of the high god” (Schwartz, 31). The Chinese had root metaphors that were related to the natural world and that caused them to consider everything within that

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