Explain the Buddhist, Taoist and the Confucianism conceptions

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DB 2

Respond to one question from Group I and one question from Group II, then respond to one more question from either group (your choice), for a total of three questions answered. Each response should be 300 words, for a total of 900.

Textbook: Fisher, Mary Pat. Living Religions, 9th ed. (Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall), 2011. ISBN: 0-205-83585-6

Group 1

  1. Explain the Buddhist conception of the “Middle Way.” How did Siddhartha come up with this idea? Do you agree with this mode of religious practice? Why or why not?

  2. Explain the concept of dukkha and its role in Buddhist teaching.

  3. Compare and contrast some of the basic ideas of Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism.

  4. What are some of the typical devotional practices of lay Buddhism? Why do some Buddhist practitioners reject or avoid such practices?

  5. List the steps on the Noble Eightfold Path and note briefly what each step involves. Do you think these steps can really lead to enlightenment or at least living a morally good life? Explain and defend your answer.


Group 2

  1. Explain how Daoism, Confucianism, and even Buddhism may be blended in Chinese religious practice. Use specific examples from the text to illustrate your claims.

  2. Compare and contrast the significance of relationships—of humans with other humans, and of humans with nature—in Daoist and Confucian thought.

  3. Which of the general characteristics of an indigenous religion described in Chapter 2 of Living Religions are evident in Shinto? What specific forms do they take?

  4. How is the Shinto belief in tsumi similar to, and different from, the understandings of karma presented in Hinduism and Jainism?

  5. What aspects of Zoroastrian belief and practice seem similar to Hinduism? Give specific examples.

  6. Do any Zoroastrian beliefs seem familiar to you in the context of your knowledge of Judaism and Christianity? If so, which ones?

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