By: Laura Dunnagan
Hello! My name is Shen Ling and I am a follower of Confucius. Confucius was not a god, but he is our spiritual leader. I believe strongly in Confucianism, meaning that my beliefs are focused on social philosophy, political philosophy, and education. I also believe that relationships are based on rank, so those people of a higher class should care for those of a lower rank. The people in the lower rank should respect the people of the higher class and obey them. Confucianism began in China, but I live in Chunghak-dong, South Korea. The teachings of Confucius spread from China to other Asian societies like mine. People, like me, who are studying the teachings of Confucius should read a book referred to as the Analects. This book has the sayings and proverbs of Confucius that were collected after his death. Many people associate the Yin-Yang symbol with Confucianism, and it symbolizes the harmony that Confucius, and Taoist teachers, taught about. The light half represents the yang- the creative, firm elements in things- where the dark represents the yin- the receptive and exerting elements. The yin and the yang interact and balance each other.
In the temple at Qufu, there are many buildings dedicated to Confucius. Confucius was not a god, and Confucianism does not worship a god or have a clergy, but there are temples that are dedicated to Confucius because he was the spiritual leader. When we visit the temples, we study ancient values and the teachings of Confucius in classes and by ourselves. In my life, I would like to visit the temple of Qufu.
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