Daoism, Confucianism, and Shinto Summary

Daoism, Confucianism, and Shinto Summary Assignment


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Daoism, Confucianism, and Shinto Summary

Complete all three parts of the assignment.

Use Experiencing the World’s Religions and other sources in your research as you respond.


Write a 75-word response for each of the following questions:

Describe the principles of yang and yin.

The Yin and Yang principle is that all things exist as inseparable and contradictory opposites such as: male and female, dark and light, old and young. The theory is that opposites attract and complement each other, and if one increases the other decreases to find balance. Each dot represents the core element of the other and they need to be balanced to achieve harmony. The yin represents feminine, black, and provides spirit to all things. The yang represents masculine, white, and provides the form to all things.

The main scripture in Daoism is the Daodejing (Tao Te Ching). What is the history and importance of this text for the tradition?

The Daodejing is said to be the gradual accretion of centuries of wisdom forwarding a particularly mystical worldly view. The first philosophical achievement of the Daodejing is the clarification of the concepts of Dao. The Daodejing offered us two basic meanings of the Dao. The first meaning of the Dao is the universal necessity of underlying all things and controlling their existence. The second meaning is the Dao is the very beginning of all things.

Art plays an important role in expressing Daoist beliefs. Poetry often reflects the key concepts of Daoism. An example of this would be simplistic connections between man and nature. These poems expressed the beauty of nature in its true and beautiful form. The same concept can be seen in paintings. Paintings often depict scenery of nature in the untouched human elements. Another great example of this is in paintings that have some quiet moments of self-reflection of one’s true self.

  • How are Daoist ideals expressed through art? Offer several examples.

What challenges does Daoism face in the modern world?

Daoism has lost popularity in some areas of Asia. Daoism hasbeen able to stay active throughoutTaiwan and Hong Kong however and is trying to start re-gaining popularity throughout China. The Daodejing is one of the most translated books, and throughout the world its rituals and arts have gained lots of interest because its teachings are relatable.Daoism’s main goal is to start to increase its religions followers worldwide and not just in Asia.

Explain a situation to which following the Daoist principle of wuwei might be beneficial to you or others. In what situation, might following the principle of wuwei be harmful in some way?

The Daoist principle of wuwei is to do nothing and let the natural course happen. A situation that can’t be controlled such as love is a great example. A personcan love someone and end up pushing them away instead if they let nature take its course. It is better to let nature take its course than force something that is not there.Just like there is things beneficial to practicing the wuwei, there are also disadvantages. Sometimes you can’t wait for nature you should work for what you want. Such as in school if you don’t do the work you will not succeed.


Write a 175- to 350-word summary on Confucianism that addresses the following topics:

What are the Five Great Relationships?

How is the morally upright person to act?

What is the role of Confucianism in Chinese culture and society today?

The first great relationship is kindness in the father and obedient devotion in the son (“Confucianism”, 2017). Second great relationship is gentility in the eldest brother and humility and respect in the younger (“Confucianism”, 2017). Third great relationship is righteous behavior in the husband and obedience in the wife (“Confucianism”, 2017). Fourth great relationship is humane consideration in elders and deference in juniors (“Confucianism”, 2017). The final great relationship is benevolence in rulers and loyalty of minsters and subjects Family is the most important relationship (“Confucianism”, 2017). Family is the basic unit of all humanity. Confucius was the kind of person that did not believe in an individual soul or self, a person’s relationship and role defines who that person is. The main goal of living is to find harmony through following the Five Great relationships. The father is the key figure in a family and must be a good example to his children, especially his sons. It is the son’s job to listen to what the father tells them and to honor him after his death. Confucius always tried to teach that the government should be for the people, and viewed these relationships as the building blocks of a civilized society. To maintain each relationship Confucius believed set behaviors must be maintained. These behaviors come from established traditions. Without these guidelines, Confucius believed humans would return to anarchy.

A morally upright people must maintain a sense of doing what is right, they serve their superiors with loyalty and respect, and display benevolence towards others and that an ideal ruler should influence others by moral example(Molloy, 2013, “Chapter 6”). Confucianism has been a crucial part of modern Chinese society by encouraging social order. Confucius believed this is achieved by showing respect for the elderly, the elevation of teachers, and doing good in the community and for the community.Confucianism has started to resurface in China and is rejuvenating in education systems in China, mainly private schools(“Confucianism”, 2017).


Write a 175- to 350-word summary of Shinto practices that still exist today.

Several of the early Shinto practices still exist today such as the worship of Deities. These practices are done through offerings, prayers, and light-hearted festivals at the numerous shrines(“Shinto”, 2016). It is believed that Shinto practices are done on many levels such as formal blessings by priests at shrines; blessings by priests away from the shrine; Shinto observance of holidays, the seasons, nature; andeveryday followers who have shrines in their homes(“Shinto”, 2016).  These ceremonial practices of Shinto are also practiced by the emperor and other authorities(Molloy, 2013, “Chapter 6”). Love and devotion for all of nature is the central idea in Shinto and that is why many shrines were created for royal ancestors such as, the deity of rice, the spirit of some outstanding phenomena, a great mountain, a beautiful waterfall, or simply and unusual tree or rock (“Shinto”, 2016). Individuals visit shrines for blessings during significant occasions in their lives such as “babies being brought one month after their birth; children when they are young for additional blessing at ages 3 and 7 for girls and age 5 for boys” (Molloy, 2013, “Chapter 6”).


Confucianism. (2017). Retrieved Feb 12, 2017 from http://asiasociety.org/education/Confucianism

Molloy, M. (2013). Experiencing the World’s Religions (6th ed.). Retrieved Feb 11, 2017 from https://phoenix.vitalsource.com/#/books/1259764575/cfi/6/6! /4@0:0

Shinto. (2016). Retrieved Feb 12, 2017 from http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2056.html