Kung Fu Panda 2 By Milen Nelivigi

For my living color project I decided to watch Kung Fu Panda 2. It is about a panda named "Po" that is trying to find inner peace while also defending China from an evil peacock that uses fireworks as weapons.

There are numerous references to Confucian and Taoist beliefs and practices in this movie. For example, there are many instances in the movie where the "yin yang" symbol from Taoism is seen or talked about. The "yin" (the dark and evil side of this symbol) represents the peacock named Lord Shen. The "yang" (the lighter and good side) represents Po and his friends.

Another reference of Taoism is when Po learns that he must find inner peace by going with the flow. Finding your inner peace is one of the main aspects of Taoism. One does this by reconnecting with nature and attaining child-like simplicity. While finding their inner peace, Po and Master Shifu are seen in nature. The concept of going with the flow is called wu wei. This says that one must not fight what naturally happens and to adapt to how things are going, not try and change it.

One of the biggest references to Confucianism in this movie is the fact that the whole things is based on Kung Fu. Kung Fu is an ancient martial art that was based on Confucianism. It focuses on not trying to use brute force, but perfecting your mind and body in order to have faster reactions and using your opponents weight and strength against them. Kung Fu also relates to wu wei in that a student must not try to stop an attack, but rather use it to create your own attack.

Students should choose this experience for the living color project because it not only extremely fun, but very informative. All of the references to different Chinese ideas are fairly obvious if the viewer is paying attention, making it easier to make connections to the legacy of these ideas. Time and time again, this movie shows how ancient beliefs from Taoism and Confucianism affect the lives of these characters. I also think that because this movie is so interesting and fun to watch, it is easier to retain information. Sometimes when something isn't entertaining you must work harder than normal in order to focus and get the information that you need, but in this movie making connections to Confucianism and Taoism was very simple and easy.







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