Confucianism and Communism

According to the western literature, the Ju philosophy is Confucianism. This term had its beginning from Confucius, founder of the Ju School. It is a philosophy and a system of ethics (Chai & Chai, 1973). This philosophy has been long dominant in the Chinese thought and has occupied a spot that others would consider comparable to religion. Although it has no religious structure of sanction, it is religious because of its features, which include offering reverence to T’ien (Heaven), ceremonial and sacrificial practices, belief in moral order and value, and noble ethical teachings (Chai & Chai, 1973). All this brings to light the religious aspects of the Ju philosophy.

Communism, on the other hand, is the doctrine of the conditions of the liberation of the proletariat class in the society, which lives entirely from the scale of labor and does not draw profits from any kind of capital. In other word, this is the working class of the 19th century (Holmes, 2009). Thus, Communism, from the legal perspective, is a type of government that depends on collectivization of labor and goods to equalize the classes in the society.

The place of Confucianism has differed from period to period. Economic factors support the Confucian educator’s work on the long-term moral transformation by teaching the Confucian classics to young children. The Ju philosophy has however undergone several changes due to interpretation and alien influence (Chai & Chai, 1973).

Communism’s self-criticism is to some extent suggestive of the Confucian doctrine of self-cultivation. This is elaborated by Wang Yang-Ming’s view, “knowledge is the beginning of conduct…” communism clearly dictates rules without question, and this brings a mix with Confucianism since it has been taught from long without undergoing any alteration so that the teachings do not lose meaning. They blend well since one is about following the rules to the letter and the other talks of following a certain pattern of doing things.

In his view, Wang Yang-Ming describes knowledge as the beginning of conduct. Thus, once you have learnt a certain way of doing things, you will follow it without questioning its validity. Therefore, this points out a mix between Confucianism and communism.

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Looking at Confucianism there is a certain pattern of doing things which if correctly followed seems to imprint values on people. Concerning communism, people forcefully took a route that after following for a long time became a value that everyone must uphold. This would be an example of how communism and Confucianism mix especially in the Chen village.

People learned in the Ju schools to follow a certain pattern of doing things. When communism emerged, these same people had no problem adapting since they knew how to follow a certain way of doing things. Therefore, a mix would seem appropriate because people would simply adapt to new ways without question.

Confucianism stresses the importance of principles and universal facts articulated by wise men of the past and emphasize self-improvement. It agrees with the view of communism of setting out examples followed as principles and laws as facts to govern the people. Therefore, there is a mix between the two.

Overall, there was a good mix. However, morality is the base of Confucianism as a social code, but communism reminisces on following a certain code of conduct, in other words, following laws to the letter and as Confucius said; “if you use regulations to govern and keep people in line through punishment, they will follow the laws, but have no sense of shame”. In addition, considering the kind of habits that the communism thought brings into a society, the mix does not last for long and it breaks off soon afterwards.

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