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Confucianism (儒家 Pinyin: rújiā "The School of the Scholars"), sometimes translated as the School of Literati, is an East Asian ethical, religious and philosophical system originally developed from the teachings of Confucius.
Debated during the Warring States Period and forbidden during the short-lived Qin Dynasty, Confucianism was chosen by Han Wudi and used as a political system and a kind of state religion. Despite loss of influence during the Tang Dynasty, Confucianist doctrine remained mainstream Chinese orthodoxy for two millennia, until the beginning of 20th century, when it was vigorously repressed by Chinese Communism. However, there are recent signs of a revival of Confucianism due to the loosening political control as well as a surge of Chinese nationalism.
Since Confucius' death, many people, mostly in China, Korea, Japan, and Vietnam, have professed Confucianist beliefs and seen in this historical figure the "Greatest Master."
Zhu Xi and other Neo-Confucians gave Confucianism renewed vigor in the Song and later dynasties. Neo-Confucianism combined Taoist and Buddhist ideas with existing Confucian ideas to create a more complete metaphysic than had existed before. Confucianism as it exists today is primarily a creation of Zhu Xi and the other Neo-Confucians.(more...)