Traditional Chinese Thoughts Human Nature Essay

Total Length: 1976 words ( 7 double-spaced pages)

Total Sources: 6

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In contrast Mozi argued that people should always care for others equally.

Linking the thoughts of different philosophers

The ancient Chinese sacrificial practice was very common whereby the historical dynasties had carried out human sacrifices quite extensively. However there was the disappearance of this ritual during the periods of spring and autumn as well as the warring periods. Though it was practiced privately this ritual of sacrificing humans was replaced at the state level by clay puppets. The reason why this ritual was discontinued was not known. All these philosophers ignored the blood letting ritual but instead put emphasis on ritual morality to form the foundation of ritual state. Xunzi came up with a funeral ritual which was an ancestral right which required blood sacrifice in the ancient time. This according to him was to form the basis for good citizenship and morality when it came to rituals (Plutschow, 2002).

All the philosophers debated on the shift from a sacrificial towards a moral ritual. Confucius, Mencius, Mozi, Zhuangzi, Han Feizi were all against the human sacrifice ritual. However though they all shared the same thoughts they deviated from each other when it came to the opinions of the principles that governed statehood and good citizenship. Another reason for the deviation was due to the fact that these philosophers had come to a realization of the moral potential that is created in humans through rituals.
This include respect, reverence, frugality, loyalty, love without mentioning the potential that rituals have when it comes to the debates on political and social issues ( Plutschow, 2002).

All these philosophers also agreed on another premise .they all were in agreement that the moral virtue whether it was acquired through education it was innate it should be cultured under the guidance of the state. Morality and state were dependent upon each other and neither could exist without the other. Another common thing among these philosophers was their debate on statecraft. They asked themselves basic questions on how the state should be organized and the relationship that should exist between those who are being ruled and their rulers. Therefore it is seen that these philosophers held similar views on certain issues.


Plutschow, H. (2002). Xunzi and the Ancient Chinese Philosophical Debate on Human Nature. Retrieved May 23, 2013 from (2010). Mohism (Philosophy of Mozi). Retrieved May 23, 2013 from

Brindley, E. (2011). Individualism in Classical Chinese Thought. Retrieved May 23, 2013 from

Piblius. (2007). Comparing Mohism and Confucianism. . Retrieved May 23, 2013 from

Wheeler, L. (2013). Confucius and Confucianism. Retrieved May 23, 2013 from

TravelchinaGuide. (2013). Confucianism. Retrieved May 23, 2013 from

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