Making China Modern

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Subject name: HIST 30014 Making China Modern (JAN,2013)
Tutorial time: 1pm-2pm
Tutor:Ms Bei en Zou

Student name: Shinong(Sharon) Cai
Student number: 387348

Topic:In no more then 500 words, write a short account, description, or discussion of Max Webber, “ Confucianism and Puritanism,”

In Chapter eight of “The Religion of China: Confucianism and Taoism,” Max Webber makes a comparison of the eastern philosophy of Confucianism with the western religion of Puritanism. He makes the connection between the how Confucianism has shaped China historically from an individuals personal goals to its economic and commercial conditions.

Webber first describes the rationalization of a religion using two different yard-sticks, “one is the degree to which the religion has divested itself of magic; the other is the degree to which it has systematically unified the relation between God and the world and therewith its own ethical relationship to the world.” Webber denotes that in western Protestant rationalism, magic has been eradicated entirely and was sometimes even viewed as “devilish”, cutting off all trust in magical superstitions and manipulations. However, in the Confucian ethics, the significance of magic was left untouched. All natural scientific knowledge was lacking due to a cause and elemental forces. It also vested interest in the income opportunities of prebendal office. Webber states that Confucianism and Puritanism both take different stands against the world, Puritanism believed in a God where as Confucianism did not believe in a supra-mundane God, both in time met tensions with the world’s irrationalities. This all constituted in the development of China and its people.

The Confucian ethic is to reduce tensions in the world to an absolute minimum. All human nature was disposed to be ethically good and as such, was to be indifferent from one another, capable of unlimited perfection. There was a lack of “nerves” with unlimited patience and...
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