Moral, values and ethics define who we are and what we believe. Culture, religion, and many other things affect our beliefs. One uses various types of ethics when surrounded by different groups. Knowing between right and wrong is a good foundation to practice goo ethics and morals. These things make morals, ethics and values important in society. many factors can contribute to what we think is morally right or wrong. Religion, for example, may create a barrier on to what extent we do something. Some religions set rules, or guidelines on which they limit what we do. Cultures as well contribute to people’s decisions. Many times our values and ethics disagree with different people who hold different views and beliefs.
This has become evident with one of the most well – known religion in China – Confucianism. Although it is not considered as an organized religion, it teaches how we should live our lives. K'ung Fu Tzu, also known as Confucius, who founded the philosophy believed that his society could be saved only if it emphasized in sincerity in personal and public conduct. This is due to the sorrowful fact that during his time constant warfare existed that extended through the surrounding states from where he was. Chinese society had been altered due to rapid political change, leading to people simply ignoring the set standards of social behavior. Confucius feared that this would ultimately lead to the destruction of his society, and felt it was necessary to act as soon as possible if there was to be any hope to stop this impending self-destruction of his society.
Confucian teachings served as a guide to conduct that not only influenced his people but also his wisdom has considerably spread in other countries. Everyone has their own set of values, “socially shared conceptions of what is good, desirable, and proper or bad.” Our values influence our orientations, actions, reactions, and interpretations, so being totally objective is out of the question. But is it still important to keep an open mind. In his teachings, Confucius stressed on the basic beliefs of his philosophy. Confucius believed that the key to an orderly society was the gentleman. He defined the gentleman not as a person who simply inherited nobleness from birth, but as one who possessed a good moral character. The gentleman was reverent in worship and had the utmost respect for his father and his ruler. The gentleman was expected to think for himself, assisted by a defined set of rules of conduct. Confucius established his teachings through sayings. The most important of these sayings was the golden rule, which simply stated: “What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others”
Evidently, the teachings of Confucius have similarities in other religions specifically Christianity. We can see his teachings, when broken down; have particular values parallel to the aforementioned religion. To further understand his teachings, we will relate Confucian values with that of the values of one of the most Christianized country – the Philippines.
The basic teachings that Confucius wanted people to understand are the concept of the four Cardinal Virtues: Yi, Li, Chih, Sincerity, Hsiao T’I and Jen. The Yi which means righteousness or justice conveys that we have to detach ourselves entirely from self – interests and carry out our practices adhering to the norms of justice. Propriety or Li is the mores of polite society. It helps in the growth of harmony in society. Then there is Chih or Wisdom to know all the virtues. This is to have a complete knowledge and understanding of all the virtues presented. Another is Sincerity that teaches how being sincere can move not only the truthfulness of a person but also the hearts of others.
Hsiao T’I or filial piety and brotherly love occupy a significant place in the shared wisdom of Confucius. Growing up in a patriarchal society, he...