Hi, my name is Bong-cha and I am a 15-year-old girl from South Korea. My family, and most of my country, practices Confucianism. Confucianism began over 2,500 years ago in China by Confucius himself. Eventually Confucianism became so famous that his teachings spread to other East Asian countries. The teachings of Confucius were grounded in ethical behavior and good government. Some say Confucianism is more of a philosophy than a religion because it focuses on social philosophy, political philosophy, and education, but to me, it is just a way of life. My family does not have very much money, but thankfully, those of higher rank take care of us. We are very grateful for them and always give them our upmost respect. Two years ago they gave me a Yin-yang to hang above my bed as a gift! The Yin-yang symbolizes the harmony offered by philosophies. Half of it is light, representing yang, the creative, strong element in everything. The other half is dark, representing yin, the weak, yielding elements. The Yin-yang is hung in my room and I often pray under it. The only other thing I keep in my room is The Analects, our sacred text. The Analects is a book containing Confucius’s sayings, proverbs, and teachings. I read thewhole book about three times a year and am hoping someday to have it completely memorized. Some days we go to a temple in our neighborhood that is dedicated to Confucius. My favorite time of year is Confucius’s birthday because we all gather at the temple at Qufu in his ancestral land to celebrate! It is full of celebration as well as worshiping. I love studying Confucianism, and hope to one day be one of the higher rank people so that I can give to the people just like those who have given to me. I will always love Confucius and be a loyal follower.
Boehm, Richard G., and Dinah Zike. Glencoe world geography and cultures. New York: McGraw-Hill/Glencoe, 2012. Print.
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