Buddhism and Confucianism

Topics: Buddhism, Four Noble Truths, Gautama Buddha Pages: 2 (706 words) Published: May 16, 2013
Though seemingly unrelated, Buddhism and Confucianism share many similarities, such as their influence on Chinese society and also teaching their people to be virtuous. They do though, differ in their beliefs and on a fundamental point; Buddhism is spiritual, while Confucianism is entirely secular.

Buddhism and Confucianism are parallel in several ways. First, as mentioned before, they both influenced Chinese society in a way. Buddhism influenced China by the improvements of landscape painting. Their belief teaches compassion, karma, reincarnation, meditation, enlightenment, and respect of Heaven and Earth. The influence of Buddhism grew o such an extent that vast amounts of finical and human resources were expended on the creation and establishment of impressive works of art and elaborate temples. This growing interest in Buddhism helped to inspire new ways of depicting deities, new types of architectural spaces in which to worship them, and new ritual motions and actions. Confucians influences the basis of society, family structure, and the government for thousands of years. Buddhism encourages a respect for life; in China it helped modify the cruel punishments call for under Legalism. Buddhism espoused respect for all forms of life. Buddhism encouraged the people to be charitable and monasteries became the cultural centers of learning and scholarship. On the other hand, Confucianism had a great impact on the Chinese civilization. It greatly influenced their attitude toward life and it also set their patterns of living and standards of social value. Because of their influence on Chinese society, Buddhism and Confucianism also taught their followers good conduct. The Buddha taught that nirvana, or union with the universal spirit, can be reached through an understanding of the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path, not through reincarnations from one cast to another. Confucianism taught that social order, harmony, and good government should be based on...
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