Edited by Stephan Feuchtwang
Chapter 4: The contemporary Confucian revival in perspective
Family rituals, rites of passage, and ceremonies honouring Confucius and the classics attributed to him and his main disciples have become a heritage of Chinese civilization heralded by and claiming the attention of the highest government officials. But they are also independently revived by parents and their children, manifest in the financing of Confucian schools. Some promote the honouring of Confucius as a Chinese religion, but most simply advance this heritage as a contemporary moral formation. This amounts to one of many turns in the republican history of Confucianism, rejected as holding back progress or to be kept as a revised and reformed moral foundation of Chinese nationality. Even one of the biggest of the early twentieth-century redemptive societies combining Confucianism with the teachings of Buddhism, Daoism and modernism, the Yiguandao (Way of Pervading Unity), has returned with official recognition in both Taiwan and the People’s Republic of China (PRC).
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