Confucius vs Taoism

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Good governance and political system has always been a cry for many nations especially developing countries Zambia inclusive. It is believed that good governance yield more economic and social development. Numerous scholars have written a number of books concerning good governance. Confucius believed to have been born in 551 BCE in Zou, Shandong Province and Lao Tzu said to have lived in the sixth century BCE are such examples of people who attempted to contribute to how people should be governed. Thus, this essay analyses the kinds of governments proposed by Confucius and Leo Tzu. Thereafter, it shall select one which is appropriate for the Zambian government and explains why it is ideal for the Zambian government. Although Confucius had a great education and became a teacher, teaching earned him little money and he was forced to take on other jobs. Before he died, there is evidence that he had many students who traveled around with him. However, Matt Rank (2007) argues that Confucius himself never achieved a very high office in government. He spent many years of his life trying to achieve a change in society through the right leadership, but he was never able to find a leader who would listen to him. Dubs H. Homer (1946; 275), on the other hand asserts that Confucius came to be appointed to the minor position of governor of a town. Eventually, he rose to the position of Minister of Crime in 501 BC. However, Confucius proposed through what might be called the bible of Confucianism the Analects, how the government and people generally should live in society. The Analects contains the wisdom of Confucius as written down by his students while he was alive and after he was alive. It's clear that Confucius prioritized certain principles over others. He was not concerned with the ingenuity of humanity, with what's been invented or thought up. He was not concerned with who is more intelligent than whom. He would have been unimpressed by Einstein. For Confucius, human society begins with (and is sustained by) society, government, custom, and personal virtue. Confucius was probably the most obvious humanistic philosopher. He emphasized the idea that humans could change and better their present circumstances through their own intelligence and effort. Confucius was, in modern terminology, a down-to-earth philosopher. He reasoned that we should not think about things outside of the realm of immediate human existence. Confucius stressed the social over the individual. Confucius' political thought is based upon his ethical thought. He argues that the best government is one that rules through "rites" and people's natural morality, rather than by using bribery and coercion. He explained that this is one of the most important analects: "If the people be led by laws, and uniformity sought to be given them by punishments, they will try to avoid the punishment, but have no sense of shame. If they be led by virtue, and uniformity sought to be given them by the rules of propriety, they will have the sense of the shame, and moreover will become good." (James Legge 1880; 345). This "sense of shame" is an internalisation of duty, where the punishment precedes the evil action, instead of following it in the form of laws as in Legalism. “Lead the people with administrative injunctions and put them in their place with penal law, and they will avoid punishments but will be without a sense of shame. Lead them with excellence and put them in their place through roles and ritual practices, and in addition to developing a sense of shame, they will order themselves harmoniously.” (Analects II, 3)...
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