Classical Empires Dbq

Topics: Buddhism, Taoism, Meaning of life Pages: 6 (1004 words) Published: November 7, 2012



The following question is based on the accompanying documents. (The documents have been edited for the purpose of this exercise). The question is designed to test your ability to work with and understand historical documents. Write an essay that:

• Has relevant thesis and supports that thesis with evidence from the documents.

• Uses all or all but one of the documents.

• Analyzes the documents by grouping them in as many appropriate ways as possible and does not simply summarize the documents individually.

• Takes into account both the sources of the documents and the authors’ points of view.

Essay Prompt

Analyze the similarities and differences between the two religions, and what makes these religions unique.

Based on the following documents, discuss classical empires. What types of additional documentation would help determine the benefits and difficulties of running classical empires?

Historical Background

Buddhism and Taoism are both mainly centered in eastern China, and many people are confused between the two. Not very many people understand what Buddhists stand for, but many people only know they live to find meaning, and to reach nirvana. Taoists look to end the sufferings in life.

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Robert Bogoda, A Simple Guide to Life, 1994

To make the best use of our human potential, we need not only a practical aim in life, but a life plan for achieving that aim. The preceding two sections of this essay show the groundwork for developing a proper sense of values, the values essential for gaining happiness, success, and security within the mundane life and for progressing towards the ultimate goal of the Buddhist path, Nibbana. While we walk along the path to liberation, as laypeople we have to live in the world, and our immediate objective will be to make our life in the world both a means to worldly success and a stepping-stone to final liberation.


Lama Surya Das, Buddhism Plain and Simple
This picture depicts the god of Buddhism, Buddha.
In this picture he can be seen as a calm, wise, and intelligent man. He seems like he just might be meditating. This is the way of Buddha, being wise, kind, and finding meaning in life. This is the way many Buddhists believe they should be.

Tai Chi Chuan, Taoism and the Philosophy
The religious current of Taoism evolved its own pantheon of deities that were worshipped in temples by the various sects. These Taoist deities, like the Buddhist or Hindu pantheon, represented different qualities and attributes and various ceremonies, depending on circumstances were conducted to appeal to them. Unlike most religions, Taoism has more than one religious figure. In fact, they have about 27 deities, which all stand for different individual things, such as pure ones, immortals, the 3 officials, and many more.

Tai Chi Chuan, Taoism and the Philosophy

A Taijitu, the main symbol of the Taoist spirituality. Please note...
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