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Posted: April 27th, 2019

Characteristics of Eastern Civilization

Characteristics of Eastern Civilization

Eastern civilization refers to the societies, cultures, and beliefs that originated in Asia, particularly in China, India, and Japan. These civilizations are distinct from Western civilization in terms of their characteristics, values, and traditions. Here are some key characteristics of Eastern civilization:

Collectivism: Eastern civilization is known for its emphasis on collectivism. In these societies, the group or community is given priority over the individual. Family and social harmony are highly valued, and individuals are expected to put the needs of the group before their own interests.

Spirituality: Eastern civilization has a deep spiritual tradition. Religion and philosophy have played a significant role in shaping the culture and values of these societies. Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, and Shintoism are some of the major religions and philosophies that originated in the East.

Emphasis on Education: Education has always been highly valued in Eastern civilization. The pursuit of knowledge and learning has been a key aspect of these societies for centuries. In China, for example, the civil service exams were a way for people to advance their social status by demonstrating their knowledge.

Respect for Authority: Eastern civilization places a strong emphasis on hierarchy and authority. Respect for elders, teachers, and leaders is deeply ingrained in the culture. This is particularly true in Confucianism, which emphasizes the importance of social order and respect for authority figures.

Harmony with Nature: Many Eastern societies have a deep reverence for nature. This is reflected in their art, literature, and philosophy. Taoism, for example, emphasizes the harmony between humanity and nature, and encourages people to live in accordance with the natural world.

The differences between Eastern and Western civilization are significant. While Western civilization places greater emphasis on individualism, Eastern civilization emphasizes collectivism and social harmony. This has had a significant impact on the growth and development of these societies over time. In Eastern civilization, the focus has been on building strong communities and maintaining social order, while in Western civilization, the emphasis has been on individual rights and freedoms.

In conclusion, Eastern civilization has a rich and diverse cultural heritage, shaped by centuries of history, religion, and philosophy. Its emphasis on collectivism, spirituality, education, respect for authority, and harmony with nature has had a profound impact on the development of these societies. Understanding these characteristics can help us appreciate the unique qualities of Eastern civilization and learn from its rich cultural traditions.

Reflection:
In studying the characteristics of Eastern civilization, I gained a deeper appreciation for the diversity of human culture and the importance of understanding different perspectives. It was interesting to learn about the emphasis on collectivism and social harmony in these societies, as well as the deep spiritual traditions that have shaped their beliefs and values. I also found it intriguing to compare and contrast the differences between Eastern and Western civilization, particularly the emphasis on individualism versus collectivism. Overall, this discussion has broadened my perspective on the world and helped me appreciate the unique qualities of different cultures.
Characteristics of Eastern Civilization

The following topic(s) will demonstrate what the discussion is about, but feel free to branch off or expand on the topics. In addition to this discussion, you will be asked to craft a 150 word reflection on what you have learned through this conversation and post it to theReflection Journal. The more active you are in this part of the discussion, the more you will have to draw from in your reflection, so get involved, be active, help out your classmates when they need it, and, most of all, enjoy the conversation.

You will find two options for this discussion forum; Question A and Question B. Please select one of the two options for this discussion.

Question A

Now that we have examined what we call a Western Individualism and an Eastern Collectivism, what were the ways that these two cultural approaches influenced the growth of societies from small nations to larger kingdoms and empires? What were the differences between these two cultural types?

Question B

How did the Eastern religions and philosophies influence the evolution of Chinese and Indian civilizations? What can we learn from these belief systems as our society continues to evolve in the present?

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