September 29, 2007

Thoughts in Chinese tradition vs. other major religions.

Posted in Uncategorized at 2:33 pm by changisme

I was thinking about this article about traditional Chinese thoughts. In real Chinese tradition(if there is such isolation at all), there is no "religion" per ce. Well, I should say there is no "theology" per ce. The concept of "god" is introduced from the west(India earlier then far west missionary). Traditionally, people worship "real" people. The worship or Yu, Confusius, Taozi and Zhuge.

The thing with worshiping people is that those people are perfected. They become flawless and not veyr human anymore. I don’t know if the west is actually as different as the author says though, because they personify God as well, and people adored the fact God is also human in a lot of sense. In the Egyptian religion, well… the gods are even living humans. I don’t really know how you would regard the traditions that associate gods with natural establishments, like mountains and rivers. I think though, it is not exactly the kind of perfect god(s) in other religions, it’s more a fear and respect of power. The mountains and animals are not exactly worshiped for their perfetion, but rather their association of a specific power or protective stature. It is not to say that the other traditions neglects power of course.

In fact, the Chinese tradition differ from the west or I should say, the other major traditional groups not in whether or not the gods or saints are real people or not, but whether they carry power over the living, the regular Joe and Jane. This may be why people say the Chinese use "philosophies" rather than "religion", because the worshiped, such as the saints in Taoism and Confussius don’t have ever lasting dominion. Power is something that is always ingrained in politics and ancestry.

I was thinking whether this makes the traditions more easily altered. Since Confucius is not going to wake up from his grave and whip the but of the "infidel", maybe a drift is more likely? Well… history proves that the ruling class and respect towards tradition act as the whip of Confucius. Well… I shouldn’t make it sounds so bad, in better times, they are the guardians and stablizers. In fact, this way of propagating religion/tradition seems to prevent changing even more.

I think it is because in some major religions, Different interpretations arise due to needs of various kind, revolutionary or ruling. Then according to the nature of the system, power rests in thgod(s) rather than the rulers, so it’s more likely for the people at least believe that they can use this new interpretation. This is not easy of course, because power is largely in the ruling class anywhere you go.

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