RELIGIOUS STUDIES 101B Lecture Notes March 12
the review questions are a good way of knowing what the
professor thought was most important for us to know.
THE FIVE CLASSICS ARE SUPER IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER
YIN YANG BINARY
THE MAIN CONFUCIAN CONCERNS
THE CONFUCIAN VIRTUES
JUNZI became democratized wtih Confucious, ANYONE can be Junzi,
not just the noble born. Junzi means Noble Confucian.
XIAO - FILIAL PIETY. love of the family. respect, caring for
them, getting married, having children of your own. for whom is
this important? this isn't just important for the confucians, it
is for EVERYBODY.
KNOW THE FOUR NOBLE TRUTHS. KNOW THE FOUR STAGES OF LIFE FOR
we left off last class with the five great relationships
THE FIVE GREAT RELATIONSHIPS
established to limit the negative consequences of ignoble
people. focused on RIGHT ACTION. fulfilling your duties in these relationships. *not hierarchical
1. EMPEROR / MINISTER or RULER / SUBJECT. its expected that the
ruler will act like a father and ensure the proper education and
maintenance of the people. in return the people will respect him
and his rulings
2. FATHER / SON. father expected to raise son moral and well
educated, son expected to take care of the father in old age.
3. ELDER BROTHER / YOUNGER BROTHER. this distinction is not just
specific to china but japan, korea, and vietnam. it is in the
language. elder cares for younger, younger complies with elder.
4. HUSBAND / WIFE. just like the others, this is one of rank.
wife is beneath husband and to obey him. in turn, the husband
5. ELDER / YOUNGER. elders are afforded great respect and
authority. so age plays a huge role in relationships.
6TH RELATIONSHIP? a lot of debate about this. FRIENDS.
for all intensive purposes, there are just the five. 6th can be
incorporated into 5th for test.
each individual fulfills their responsibilities and as such,
society will be much stronger.
this concept is known as the RECTIFICATION OF NAMES.
Education of women is very different. boys and girls kept
separate. girls are in private domain, boys in public. this is
never hard and fast in any culture, but as a rule, this is the
MENCIUS & XUNZI
- foremost classical philosophers other than confucius MENCIUS (343-289 bce)
XUNZI (310-219 BCE)
both philosophers during time of upheaval, like confucius, so
they are also obsessed with peace and better society.
- a key element of difference between the two is how they
understood human nature.
- MENCIUS is the latinized version of MENG KE, MASTER MENG, or
MENGZI. lived in 4th C bce
- the book Mencius is a collection of conversations between
Mencius and his disciples and rulers.
- talks about human nature and the government
- develops concept of HEART MIND, four types of which associated
with a specific kind of behaviour. COMPASSION, RESPECT, SHAME,
RIGHT & WRONG. these each lead to something. people need to use
their HEART MIND to determine the right course of action
- MENCIUS believed human nature was essentially GOOD. but it had
to be guided by rulers who had a responsibiility to help
individuals reach their full potential.
- the most educated well trained and intelligent people should
be leaders. leaders lead by example. try to encourage people to
reach these characteristics.
- proper human interaction can be based on LOVE.
- love should be applied in a hierarchical way. family more than
friends, friends more than strangers, and so on.
xinzi is latinized too
book of XUNZI consists of essays that are largely influenced by
historical circumstances. different than analects and mencius,
because these are essays not conversations.
- the vicious wars convinced Xunzi that human nature was EVIL. - turns away from supernatural. says focus on activities in this
- goodness results from conscious activity
we need lots of training and discipline to become good.
- places a great deal of importance on RITES adn their proper
THE TEXTS THAT HELP INDIVIDUALS DEVELOP CONFUCIUS VALUES
confucius stressed the value of the past when things were much
more stable. confucius thinks people need to familiarize
themselves with the FIVE CLASSICS which governed when things
were much better.
confucius did not write his own texts, disciples did
unlike other founding fathers we have considered thus far, it is
'said' that confucius EDITED TEXT. he edits texts that predate
one more side note: the finalization of the confucian canon was
accomplished between 1260-1279 CE! this proves to us that texts
develop over time. the five classics are also seen to show a
very heavy influence very early on.
THE HAN DYNASTY
the compilation of the five classics was completed during the
Han (202-220 CE). not originally called the five classics, not
until the end of this canonization. the compilation of them
occured in this time.
- the transition from QIN to HAN brought political and
intellectual changes. for example: the addition of XIN
(TRUSTWORTHINESS), addition of trinity of heaven earth and
humans, belief that powers respond to human pleas. during this
time too a holistic cosmology is offered with humans place in it
articulated. a lot of syncretism with folk traditions. - confucius texts blended with omens, notion of yin and yang,
the naturalist school teachings too.
- EMPEROR WU instated political / state confucianism in the 1C
know this about the HAN dynasty:
EMPEROR WU made confucianism the official
state policy. 1C BCE
the circumstances behind the Five Classic