Reading Questions Exam 2.docx - Exam 2 Study...

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Exam 2: Study Questions (Readings)1.)In the opening pages of Chapter 3, what does Prothero imply regarding Western perceptions of Confucian teachings, and the actual historical and global influence (not the same as demographic scope) of Confucian ideas and values?According to Prothero, on what grounds could it be argued that Confucian teachings do or do not represent a religion? If they do count as a religion, of what kind? According to Prothero, what happens to "Confucianism" once China becomes a communist nation in 1949, and what sorts of developments characterize the "New Confucianism" of modern day China? -Prothero implies that most westerners know little to nothing about Confucianism compared to the other great religions-Confucianism is old-fashioned and formal-It’s about empty rituals, banal aphorisms, and antiquated etiquette-He says Confucianism maintains the status quo – wives bowing before husbands, workers scraping before bosses, and the masses endlessly deferring to governmentalindustry-Calls Confucius a self-described lover of antiquity, who commands us to commemorate our elders and the dead-He seems to think Confucianism is a joke-Over human history, Confucianism may have carried more clout than any other religion-Confucius is one of the five most influential people in history-The collection of Confucius’s words and deeds is among the world’s most influentialbooks-It has wielded more power over more people over more time than any other book (besides the Bible)-Observers widely believed that Confucianism was not just a barrier to economic development but a blockade-Now that capitalism is booming in East Asia many see Confucius guiding the post WWII economic miracles in China, Japan, and Korea-His emphasis on education has been a huge driver in economic development in EastAsia-Confucian values have propelled China to its current status as the worlds top exporter, leading buyer of the U.S. debt, and a major trading partner with the U.S., theEuropean Union, and Japan-Confucianism is grouped today alongside Daoism and Buddhism as one of China’s “Three Teachings”-Nagging question whether Confucianism is a religion at all-For the Chinese Confucianism is a philosophy, ethic, or way of life-The Chinese government officially recognizes only 5 religions: Buddhism, Daoism, Roman Catholicism, Protestant, and Islam-But Confucianism is not on that list-Confucianism has no formal religious hierarchy such as the Vatican, no priesthood, and almost no congregational life
-Confucian temples are dedicated to mere mortals-Its canonical texts are not said to be divinely inspired-Like Buddhism, Confucianism can’t seem to make up its mind about the religion thing-Confucianism distinguishes itself from any other religions by its lack of interest in the divine-Its adherents do speak of a heaven but they pay as much attention to the creator God as your average atheist-Unlike Christianity, which drives a wedge between the eternal “City of God” and the

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