China By, Katrina Stanley & Benjaman Smoldom

China

Religion

The Main Religion in china is Buddhism and it has over 350,000,000 practitioners. Buddhism originated from India and has no central Deities. Four Central Beliefs of China Include:o Sila: Virtue, good conduct, morality. This is based on two fundamental principles

o Samadhi: Concentration, meditation, mental development. Developing one's mind is the path to wisdom which in turn leads to personal freedom. Mental development also strengthens and controls our mind; this helps us maintain good conduct.

o Prajna: Discernment, insight, wisdom, enlightenment. This is the real heart of Buddhism. Wisdom will emerge if your mind is pure and calm.

o Sila: Virtue, good conduct, morality. This is based on two fundamental principles

o Reincarnation: the concept that people are reborn after dying

Scientific Achievements

China has many scientific achievements witch include

Silk was a soft and light material desired by the wealthy throughout the world. It became so popular in trading, that a trade route from China to Europe became known as the Silk Road. The Chinese invented this from the cocoons of silkworms. They had managed to keep their process of making silk for hundreds of years.

Gunpowder was invented in the 9th century by chemists trying to find the Elixir of Immortality. Engineers soon after figured out how to use gunpowder for military uses. They also invented fireworks for celebrations and beautiful displays.

Paper was crafted by the Chinese, as well as products of paper (i.e. playing cards and paper money). Paper was first invented in the 2nd century BC and later perfected around 105 AD.

Written/Spoken Languages

Chinese characters have a history dating back more than two thousand years. The early forms of Chinese characters were pictographs (graphic representations of real objects), but characters became more stylized and came to represent ideas as well as objects.

Each Chinese character represents a syllable of the spoken language. Characters represent words and meanings, but not every character is used independently.

In an attempt to improve literacy, the Chinese government began simplifying characters in the 1950’s. These simplified characters are used in Mainland China, Singapore, and Malaysia, while Taiwan and Hong Kong still use the traditional characters.

Two Dominant Spoken Languages: Mandarin Chinese and Cantonese

Current Written Languages: Mandarin Chinese

Confucianism-Origins and History

Some say Confucianism is not a religion, since there are no Confucian deities and no teachings about the afterlife. Confucius himself was a staunch supporter of ritual, however, and for many centuries there were state rituals associated with Confucianism. Most importantly, the Confucian tradition was instrumental in shaping Chinese social relationships and moral thought. Thus even without deities and a vision of salvation, Confucianism plays much the same role as religion does in other cultural contexts. The founder of Confucianism was Kong Qiu (K'ung Ch'iu), who was born around 552 B.C.E. in the small state of Lu and died in 479 B.C.E. The Latinized name Confucius, based on the honorific title Kong Fuzi (K'ung Fu-tzu), was created by 16th-century Jesuit missionaries in China.

Every country has some sort of code of ethics. Confucianism was the code of ethics adopted as the official religion of most of the great empires in the region since the Han Dynasty. Everybody has some sort of religious belief. Confucianism provides a simple skeleton of ethical and religious beliefs that most Chinese flesh out by other religions such as Taoism.

Most Chinese still hold to include the ideas of harmony, obedience to parents and authority, that people should be trained and forced to behave "properly" in their roles, and an idea of reciprocity (do to others as they do to you whether good or bad). Most Chinese still have some belief about the worship of ancestors. They believe that their spirits still influence people, but the idea of the Mandate of Heaven if it is applied, isn't applied to living emperors.

Historical role/treatment of women

The status of women was set at birth. Sons were cherished additions to a family, not only for their physical and economic ability to contribute to the family, but also as the carrier of the family name. Only a son could provide for his elderly parents and properly venerate his ancestors. Daughters were considered a "small happiness" because they would marry into another family. To make a daughter more desirable to a potential spouse, her feet were broken and bound to produce three to four inch stubs suitable only for teetering around the house. In times of famine or dangerous warfare, daughters were the last to be fed, and newborn girls were smothered. While such severe actions were rare, they did occur and left a lasting legacy of discrimination against females.

Importance of family vs. the value of the individual

Fathers- The fathers in Ancient China were the second biggest family members, and the first is the grandfather. They gave there daughters to the man who would buy them as long as he approves. They honor there ancestors like gods. The fathers would pray to the dead, to pray to his family, because they believed the dead could pray for you. The fathers were the people in the family that would go and work. The fathers would try not to make enemy because when that person dies they believe there ghost will haunt you. The fathers were the king of the whole entire family.

Wives- The wives in ancient Chinese culture lived according to the rules set by Confucius in his analects. According to Confucius, women were not equal to men and were not worthy to have literary and education. For almost two thousand years, the life of the Chinese woman was unbearable. During the years of growing up, a Chinese woman had to listen to her father and other male members in the family. A woman in ancient China was not given a name; instead she was called "daughter no1", "daughter no2" and so on. After marriage, an ancient Chinese woman would serve her husband like a slave and could not raise her voice. It is said that in ancient China, men were allowed to have more than one wife. If the husband of a young Chinese woman died, she was not allowed to remarry. Death penalty was given, if she remarried. The main job of a woman in ancient China was to bear sons.

The Children- After marriage, an ancient Chinese woman would serve her husband like a slave and could not raise her voice. It is said that in ancient China, men were allowed to have more than one wife. If the husband of a young Chinese woman died, she was not allowed to remarry. Death penalty was given, if she remarried. The main job of a woman in ancient China was to bear sons. If your mom was a widow and you were her son, you would be her boss. Also daughters had no power and no education

The Individual- "Individualism" is used here to denote inborn and inalienable prerogatives, powers, or values associated with the self and person as found throughout much of the Chinese philosophical tradition. Unlike individualism in modern European and American contexts, Chinese manifestations of "individualism" do not stress an individual’s separation, total independence, and uniqueness from external authorities of power.

Social Mobility

Ancient China was another class-related state in the ancient world. The people were led by central figureheads, followed by a small class of social elites, just like the other previous civilizations. For the early part of its life, however, there was one thing that distinguished it from other cultures. From the Xia times through the late Shang era, women were actually more recognized in their societies. Though still not as prominent as men, they were at least honored with temples dedicated to them. Also, while men in the patriarchal society were seen as leaders and important figures, they usually earned these rights through “virtue of the female line of their decent.” In this way, at least women were treated a little better than in other civilizations. However, from the Shang dynasty on, women slowly began to lose any power they might have had as men of militaristic minds began taking center stage.

The importance of the Yellow and Yangtze river, how it affected life historically and in the present

Yellow River

The recorded history of Chinese civilization began on the banks of the Yellow River with the Xia Dynasty (c. 2100 to c. 1600 BCE). According to Sima Qian's "Records of the Grand Historian" and the "Classic of Rites," a number of different tribes originally united into the Xia Kingdom in order to find a solution to devastating floods on the river. When a series of breakwaters failed to stop the flooding, the Xia instead dug a series of canals to channel excess water out into the countryside and then down to sea.

A northward course-change in the river in the early 1850s helped fuel the Taiping Rebellion, one of China's deadliest peasant revolts. As populations grew ever larger along the treacherous river's banks, so too did the death tolls from flooding. In 1887, a major Yellow River flood killed an estimated 900,000 to 2 million people, making it the third worst natural disaster in history.

Yangtze River

The Yangtze, even more than the Yellow River, dictates the strategic imperatives of China's rulers. The Yellow River may be the origin of Han Chinese civilization, but on its own it is too weak to support the economic life of a great power. The Yellow River is China's Hudson or Delaware. The Yangtze, by constrast, is China's Mississippi. Only when the lands both north and south of the Yangtze are united does the Chinese empire emerge.

Today, it serves primarily to connect China's interior regions to the coast. Over the last decade, Beijing has made significant progress in its ambitious plans to develop the Yangtze River corridor and inland provinces more generally. But whether the government can keep up the momentum — in the face of slowing economic growth and mounting social and political pressures — will be the vital question, and a massive challenge going forward.

Chinas Colonization/Independence

What country colonized and controlled China?

In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Chinese foreign relations with most major world powers devolved into semi-colonialism as Britain, France, Germany, Russia, Japan, and (to a lesser extent) the US coerced trade and territorial concessions in a series of so-called unequal treaties.

When did the colonizing country first arrive in China?

1830s

When did the colonizing country officially take control of China?

1842

How long and in what way was China controlled?

They were ruled by British Imperialism for 156 years

What was the main reason that China was colonized?

Trade Exports

China Today

Current Population

1.37 billion people

Current Ranks of the countries economy in the world according their Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

China current rank is 2

Chinas government Name, tittle, and brief summary of their leader

China is a one-party state, with real power lying with the Chinese Communist party. The country is governed under the constitution of 1982 as amended, the fifth constitution since the accession of the Communists in 1949. The unicameral legislature is the National People's Congress (NPC), consisting of deputies who are indirectly elected to terms of five years.

China began to build a modern legal system in the late 1970s, after opening itself economically to the rest of the world.

Chinas current president is Xi Jinping and he is a General Secretary. He is the 5th most powerful person in the world. Xi Jinping holds all three offices required to be China's paramount leader, becoming what some have called the most powerful Chinese ruler since Mao Zedong.

Role of women in the society today

The family has traditionally been the basic unit of Chinese society, where women have long been charged with upholding society's values in their roles as wives and mothers. While the expected values changed from the imperial period to the Communist revolution to the modern day, this responsibility for women remained constant. Women were required to balance society's ideals with the reality of raising a family and maintaining a household. Throughout the imperial period and into the beginning of the twentieth century, the relationship among family members was prescribed by Confucian teachings. The status of women was set at birth.

Current affects/role of Confucianism

The last several years have seen an official revival of Confucianism in China. President Hu Jintao has developed the idea of a "Harmonious Socialist Society," drawing on Confucian ideas. The government has set up a network of cultural Confucius Institutes around the world. And earlier this year, a statue of Confucius was erected in Tiananmen Square. How extensive is the Confucian revival and what are its contours? What is its cultural, religious, and political significance? Dr. Li Yiu, a postdoctoral fellow at the Berkley Center and executive director of Center for Study of Religion and Society at Shanghai University, addressed these questions.

A Widespread Challenge in China

This month, a hundred years after the completion of the Panama Canal, China is expected to finish the first phase of its gigantic South-North Water Transfer Project, known in Chinese as Nanshui beidiao gongcheng — literally, "to divert southern water north." The phrase evokes the suggestion, attributed to Mao, that "since the south has a great deal of water, and the north very little, we should borrow some of it." In realizing Mao’s dream of moving huge quantities of water from areas of plenty to those of want, Beijing is building a modern marvel, this century’s equivalent of the Panama Canal. But whereas the canal inaugurated a century of faith in the ability of human ingenuity to reshape the natural world, the South-North Water Transfer Project is a testament to the limits of engineering solutions to problems of basic environmental scarcity.

One Child Policy

China said that it will abandon its controversial “one-child” policy and allow all couples to have two children, effectively ending the biggest ¬population-control experiment in history amid growing pressure from a rapidly aging population. This strict policy lead to a low fertility Rate.

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