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Philosophy

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You Are Not So Smart. Confucius. First published Wed Jul 3, 2002; substantive revision Sat Mar 23, 2013 Confucius (551?

Confucius

-479? BCE), according to Chinese tradition, was a thinker, political figure, educator, and founder of the Ru School of Chinese thought.[1] His teachings, preserved in the Lunyu or Analects, form the foundation of much of subsequent Chinese speculation on the education and comportment of the ideal man, how such an individual should live his life and interact with others, and the forms of society and government in which he should participate.

Fung Yu-lan, one of the great 20thcentury authorities on the history of Chinese thought, compares Confucius' influence in Chinese history with that of Socrates in the West. 1. The sources for Confucius' life were compiled well after his death and taken together paint contradictory pictures of his personality and of the events in his life. What role Confucius played in the duke's plans is difficult to determine. Democritus. First published Sun Aug 15, 2004; substantive revision Wed Aug 25, 2010 Democritus, known in antiquity as the ‘laughing philosopher’ because of his emphasis on the value of ‘cheerfulness,’ was one of the two founders of ancient atomist theory.

Democritus

He elaborated a system originated by his teacher Leucippus into a materialist account of the natural world. The atomists held that there are smallest indivisible bodies from which everything else is composed, and that these move about in an infinite void space. Of the ancient materialist accounts of the natural world which did not rely on some kind of teleology or purpose to account for the apparent order and regularity found in the world, atomism was the most influential. Even its chief critic, Aristotle, praised Democritus for arguing from sound considerations appropriate to natural philosophy. 1.

The work of Democritus has survived only in secondhand reports, sometimes unreliable or conflicting. 2. 3. 4. 5. Socrates. In his use of critical reasoning, by his unwavering commitment to truth, and through the vivid example of his own life, fifth-century Athenian Socrates set the standard for all subsequent Western philosophy.

Socrates

Since he left no literary legacy of his own, we are dependent upon contemporary writers like Aristophanes and Xenophon for our information about his life and work. As a pupil of Archelaus during his youth, Socrates showed a great deal of interest in the scientific theories of Anaxagoras, but he later abandoned inquiries into the physical world for a dedicated investigation of the development of moral character. Having served with some distinction as a soldier at Delium and Amphipolis during the Peloponnesian War, Socrates dabbled in the political turmoil that consumed Athens after the War, then retired from active life to work as a stonemason and to raise his children with his wife, Xanthippe. Taoism. Taoist rite at the Qingyanggong (Bronze Ram Temple) in Chengdu, Sichuan.

Taoism

Taoism, or Daoism, is a philosophical, ethical, and religious tradition of Chinese origin that emphasizes living in harmony with the Tao (also romanized as Dao). The term Tao means "way", "path" or "principle", and can also be found in Chinese philosophies and religions other than Taoism. In Taoism, however, Tao denotes something that is both the source and the driving force behind everything that exists.

It is ultimately ineffable: "The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao. While Taoism drew its cosmological notions from the tenets of the School of Yin Yang, the Tao Te Ching, a compact and ambiguous book containing teachings attributed to Laozi (Chinese: 老子; pinyin: Lǎozǐ; Wade–Giles: Lao Tzu), is widely considered its keystone work. After Laozi and Zhuangzi, the literature of Taoism grew steadily and was compiled in form of a canon—the Daozang—which was published at the behest of the emperor. Ethics[edit]