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Confucius and His Teachings

Coach Parrish
Chapter 5, Section 2
Confucius Chinese teacher and
philosopher. He was the founder of the
religion Confucianism.
The religion is based on the writings
and teaching of Confucius. Most stories
contain a moral message.
Life of Confucius
Confucius was the most famous and
important of the early Chinese
thinkers. The Chinese called him Kong
Fu Zi or Master Kong.
Early Years
Confucius was born in 551 BC to a
noble but poor family of the North
China Plain. He loved learning and was
mostly self-taught. After he failed to
succeed at advancing in government,
he began to teach.
Pioneer Teacher
Many historians think that Confucius was
Chinas first professional teacher because
he charged a fee for students.
Confucius taught his students his views on
government and life. He searched for a
ruler that would follow his teachings but
he died having never found one. He
thought he was a failure.
Teachings of Confucius
Confucius did not claim his teachings to
be original. He thought his teachings
were the works of wise men before
He hoped to bring peace, stability, and
prosperity to Chinas kingdoms.
Confucius himself never wrote down his
teachings. Instead, his students
gathered a collection of his sayings
after his death.
His writings became a philosophy
system of beliefs and values, that
became known as Confucianism.
Bringing Order to Society
The goal of Confucius was to bring
peace and order to China. He lived
during a time where Chinese kingdoms
were fighting for control.
Confucius believed that if people could
behave correctly toward one another,
peace would come.
Respecting Others
Confucius taught that people should know
their place in life and society. They should
respect people above and below them.
The Five Relationships
1. Ruler and Ruled
2. Father and son
3. Husband and wife
4. Older Brother and younger brother
5. Friend and Friend
Religious Traditions
Although Confucianism is a philosophy,
it has been a religion for many people.
Many Chinese used Confucianism along
with other religions.
Taoism supported the ideas of living a
balanced life with nature. Taoism is
based on the writings of Laozi, who
lived in the 500s BC.
Influence of Confucius
The teachings of Confucius came to have a
major effect on Chinese government. The
teachings became part of the basic training
for members of civil service a group of
people who carry out the work of
After the teachings of Confucius, the Chinese
merit system was removed. Before
government jobs were given to the sons of
powerful men.
Rising to High Positions
The examination system did not open
government jobs to everyone.
Candidates still had to know how to
read. This law made it difficult for the
poor man to enter government.