Power and the People in Ancient China
Any emperor, who practised evil, faced the wrath of heaven in the form of natural calamities and disasters. If the said emperor still continued with his immoral practices or did not heed the warnings of heaven, then heaven would appropriately withdraw his mandate. Revolution would thus emerge because of the breaking of social and political order.The leadership of ancient China came to be greatly influenced by a man called Kong-Fuzi. Confucius, as he came to be referred to in the West, was the main influence on which the Chinese people based their society. The generally believed norms derived from this man are that every person should accept the roles designed by the life processes, of which these roles and duties are geared towards others. The people are supposed to diligently obey and respect their heaven-sent rulers, of which these rulers have a duty to be benevolent. This trend of obedience should be channelled down to children who are supposed to obey their parents. in general, all persons have a duty to honour their ancestors.Confucius also taught the need for rulers to set examples to their subjects, every person is required to be kind, and none should do to others, things that would not wish were done to oneself. Courtesy and moderation were also emphasized, with women required to submit to their fathers during their childhood, to their husband when married and to their male children once widowed. Women later came to be taught how to become industrious at the same time remaining submissive and exercising humility. Confucianism became the recognized and most dominant system of ethics that was closely followed and has sometimes regarded as a religion. Taoism was also developed and consequently became the chief religion of ancient Chinese with the main emphasis derived from the Tao meaning way (Gernet 65).Taoism had a major impact on the people as it urged them to just sit back and take no action. People were supposed to submit themselves and follow whichever way they were swayed like a stick in moving water.