Tung Chung-shu

(c. 180—105 bc)

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(c.179–c.104 bc)

Chinese scholar and influential theorist of government. Tung Chung-shu is credited with rescuing Confucian thought from the ‘burning of the books’ which had occurred during the brief rule of the Ch'in Dynasty. He synthesized Confucian thought and the Yin-Yang school of cosmic metaphysics, interpreting them as practical means of understanding the will of Heaven and the operations of Nature under its guidance. Later in life he composed the Ch'unch'iu fan-lu (Luxuriant Dew of the Spring and Autumn Annals), a philosophical commentary on the Chinese classics. He persuaded the emperor Wu to adopt Confucian rather than Legalist philosophy as the official basis of Han government.

Subjects: Religion — Philosophy.

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