God is Not One carries the subtitle, “The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World – and Why Their Differences Matter.” Three chapters into the book, I have just finished reading about Confucianism. The chapter begins: “To many Westerners, Confucianism seems about as relevant as a fortune cookie.” I don’t know about you, but my prior experience with Confucianism is pretty much relegated to the occasional “Confucius says” humor.
After reading the first few pages of author Prothero’s synopsis, I heard myself announcing to my husband, “I think I might be a Confucianist.” Now, this also reminds me of my psychopathology class where we started with a brief quiz and ultimately proclaimed ourselves schizophrenic, bipolar and/or major depressive, because we met at least one diagnostic criteria from the DSM-IV-TR. Nevertheless, I found myself quite intrigued with Confucianism and wanted to share a few inspiring highlights from the book:
- The earth is our home, Confucians have always insisted, and now is our time.
- …regard the everyday human world as profoundly spiritual.
- One of the hallmarks of Confucians is their conviction that ethics and ritual are inextricably intertwined.
- “self-transformation…is a communal act.” Tu Weiming
- Human beings are learners, and as we learn we become more ourselves.
- …we become ourselves, and transform society, through others. The path to social harmony runs through human flourishing, and human flourishing is made possible through right relations with other human beings.
For my "official" review of God is Not One, visit here Monday, April 26 when I’m featured on the TLC Book Tour.