Systems of beliefs: Confucianism, Daoism, Legalism & Buddhism

Confucianism, Daoism, Legalism and Buddhism have each left an indelible mark on China's society and culture. In this section we will explore the basic beliefs about each of these belief systems, examine their similarities and differences, and determine how they influenced Asia and China, both historically and today.

Student Worksheets (to be completed):

1. Download this Comparison Chart and fill it out as you review the in-class and below information
2. Fill out this Confucius Worksheet

In-Class Powerpoints (will take a few minutes to appear/ download):

Confucius and Civil Service Exam

Other Resources:

1. MUST READ information on Culture and the Dynastic System
2. Confucius and Buddha (a little Daoism but not much). Short, straightforward (mostly bullet-point-like text)
3. Confucius: A 2 page general reading
4. Confucianism excellent summation of its' influence on China
4. Introduction to Daoism
5. The Dao (Tao) of Pooh
Winnie the Pooh.jpg

6. Daoist Quotes
7. Legalism
8. Introduction to Buddhism
9. Buddhism Overview (look especially at circle chart)
10. Mr. Stelzer's Buddhism powerpoint (modified from class)
11. 'Crash Course in History' video:

Venn Diagram- Review of Confucianism, Daoism and Buddhism

Venn Diagram Blank
Venn Diagram Words (use to fill-in diagram)

  1. BASIC Background information this background information on the belief systems.Using the chart at the back of the
  • the main ideas and beliefs about each of the three philosophies
  • what words would you associate with each, and why
  • what images might correspond to each

3. Here is some additional information:
: Buddhism
: Some information on all 3 philosophies (but mostly Confucius and Buddha)

The below Venn diagram will help you see the similarities and differences between Confucianism, Buddhism and Daoism:

Exercise 3: ASK A WISE MAN!

You are to create an oral (spoken) "advice column" about the below story (“John and the River”).

Your advice should be 90 second to 2 minutes long

You can be Confucius, Buddha or Lao Tze. PICK ANY ONE OF THE THREE (even the one on whom you did your character collage)

Read through the story below. Outline the moral issues/ decisions involved. Analyze these issues as if you were one of the philosophers.

Write out/ outline what you want to say. HAVE THIS DONE BY NEXT CLASS

Then record yourself (garageband, voicecandy, etc) giving advice as if YOU WERE Confucius, Buddha or Lao Tze. You can record yourself in class-I will give you time.

You can use as a funny way to show your speech to the class. You will need to upload a picture (any picture) if you are going to use this website

THERE IS NO ONE RIGHT ANSWER!! This is an exercise to have you think and analyze like one of the three great philosophers we have studied.

Here is the story:

Last Important Pieces of Information:

1. The idea of a meritocracy in China:
2. Mandate of Heaven: