World History Homework Three- Model

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1. Which do you like better, classical India or China, and why?

The ancient Chinese inventions of gunpowder, paper, and the compass were technological advances that impressed me. (James G.)
Out of the two I like India better. In India there are many different religious cultures, and the people have the freedom to believe what they want. Where as in China there is only one main religion and the people are expected to follow it or are otherwise persecuted. (Amanda)

2. What advantage did Buddhism have over Hinduism in converting people outside of India?

Hinduism can only be followed by the Brahmins, the highest caste, while Buddhism appeals to all different levels of society; therefore, many people accepted it outside of India. (Olivia F.)
Buddhism requires much less work as far as religion goes. Buddhism is less moral than Hinduism, and it welcomes all. (Nathanael)
For one thing, Hindus believed in the caste system, and when you are a peasant it is hard to accept that it is your fault that you have to rake manure for a living. Also, Buddhism had the help of the Silk Road. (Joey)
... In Buddhism, there are the Four Noble Truths which state that suffering is universal, desire causes it, the cure is to eliminate desire, and following the Eightfold path helps in eliminating desire which leads to Nirvana. Nirvana is release from pain to achieve inner peace. ... (Sandro)

3. Explain what this is:
Yin yang.jpg

A Chinese symbol of Taoism in Eastern China it was a symbol of Harmony and in western China it was a symbol of the struggle between good and evil. (Isaac)
This is the Yin and Yang, the symbol for Taoism in which a curved half of a circle divides a shaded from a clear region to represent interaction in nature between two different forces. The Yin is the darker side, and represents passive, negative, or feminine, which are all opposites of the Yang. The Yang is the lighter side, and represents active, positive, and masculine. (Jenn V.)
... yin is often symbolized by water, while yang is symbolized by fire. (Julie)

4. What aspect or aspects of Hinduism have enabled it to survive for so long?

Numerous aspects of the Hindu religion have served remarkably in facilitating its survival, two points coming immediately to mind. First, the flexibility of Hindu doctrine naturally tends to diminish the effects of foreign persuasion as it ultimately just adopts whatever religious concepts it encounters and incorporates them into itself seamlessly. Second, the idea of the Caste System, particularly in relation to reincarnation, has the ability to keep not only itself alive but a certain class of people in power, whereby including a self-serving incentive to those who uphold it. The religious system is so nearly flawless in both planning and execution that it has had a firm grip on India ever since its first implementation several millennia ago. (Joe B.)
Hinduism is comparable to silly putty, in that it molds or adapts to its surroundings. Hinduism is almost like the shadow you cannot step on. No matter what you do to it, it always comes back on top. Hinduism virtually encompasses every religion; the religion molds to fit the environment. It is basically a small portion of every religion. It will never completely die because as long as there is at least one other religion to draw from, Hinduism will remain standing. (Jonathan L.)

5. Describe and explain one or more of your favorite insights by Sun Tzu.

Sun Tzu was a military strategist who lived during the Warring States period of China and wrote the famous Art of War. Having not read this, I cannot choose a “favorite” insight, but I like this one: “Therefore one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the most skillful. Seizing the enemy without fighting is the most skillful.” This quotation demonstrates how logic, strategy, and ingenuity are more useful and honorable than brute force alone. (Addison)
"Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the deepest valleys; look upon them as your own beloved sons, and they will stand by you even unto death." ... "Opportunities multiply as they are seized." .... (Michelle)
One of my favorite insights of Sun Tzu is, "In war, then, let your object be victory, not lengthily campaigns." The Americans could have used a good dose of that in the Vietnam War, rather than letting the Viet Cong call phony peace conferences every so often to build their forces. (Duncan)
My favorite is his idea to let the enemy destroy itself by its own mistakes. Instead of attacking first, let your army wait for the enemy to slip up and use that to your advantage to win. (Sean)
If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is temperamental, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant. If he is taking his ease, give him no rest. If his forces are united, separate them. If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them. Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected." ... This quote doesn't only apply to military situations, but it can be used in everyday life. (Sarah B.)

6. Take your pick, classical India or China, and list in chronological order the major empires along with their time periods.

The major empires of China
(a) The Qin or Ch'in dynasty (221-206 B.C.)
(b) The Han dynasty (206 B.C. to A.D 220)
(c) Three Kingdoms (A.D. 220-280)
(d) The Sui Dynasty(A.D. 581 -618)
(e) The Tang Dynasty (A.D.618-907)
(f) The Song Dynasty(A.D.960-1279) (Veronika)
China like other nations had many rises and collapses in government ... [t]hree kingdoms lasted from A.D. 220-280. Centralized government was not reestablished until the Sui dynasty in A.D. 589. (Will)
Classical India Empires:
Achaemenid Persians - 572 B.C.
Chandragupta Mauryan - 322 B.C.
Gupta Empire - A.D. 320-467
In 327 B.C. Alexander the Great invaded India but was unable to conquer it. (Kara)
322-298 B.C. Chandragupta Mauryan created the Mauryan Empire (the largest empire in India's history)
268-232 B.C. Reign of Ashoka - Chandragupta's Buddhist grandson
78-180 B.C. Kushan Empire controlled northern India
A.D. 320-467 Gupta Empire - Chandra Gupta I established a new Hindu dynasty (Steve)

7. Current events question (choose "a" or "b"):

(a) Suppose you just heard about plans to build a mosque in Nazareth next to where the angel visited Mary, the mother of Jesus. What would your view be?
A few students expressed concern, but other students expressed greater concern about rights of private property and the owner being able to do what he likes. One student said, "I would not mind at a ll and would feel it did not pertain to me. Christianity has no 'base area' ... [and t]he Holy Spirit lives in each of us and we are not limited by geography."
(b) The Silk Road established and developed during the Han dynasty was similar in some ways to the internet today.
The Silk Road is similar to the internet today because it connected people together from faraway places. It also enabled trade and the spread of lifestyles and technology. (Leonard)
the Silk Road made communication much faster and caused business to skyrocket due to constant marketing of products between nations and people in general, much like the internet does today. ... [I]t's said that the internet creates a large "carbon footprint." Maybe we should stop using the internet because it is hurting our planet quite a bit. This answer's for you, Mr. Schlafly! (Tom)

Honors Questions (answer any 3 in addition to the above questions)

H1. The lecture mentions that the acceptance of Arabic as a liturgical language by the Pope of Alexandria may have aided the rise to dominance of Islam in Egypt. Your thoughts?

Language is what drives and leads and defines culture and government. Once Egypt when to Arabic as its religious (liturgical) language, it was inevitable that the religion most dominant in that language would eventually prevail. (Instructor)

H2. Some question whether Confucianism is really a religion. What is your view?

That depends on how you define religion. Dictionary.com defines religion as:
1. A set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.
2. A specific fundamental set of beliefs and practices generally agreed upon by a number of persons or sects: the Christian religion; the Buddhist religion. ...
If this is how you would define religion (and it seems to be a fairly reasonable definition) then I would say no, Confucianism is not a religion. It does not recognize a Creator. ... (Michelle)

H3. How do you think the major belief systems of today, as ranked in the lecture, will rank in 100 years?

The Anti-Religious view will slowly creep up the list. As the world’s morals go down, the desire for religion goes down. I have personally talked to people who have rejected religion because it did not align with how they wanted to live. (Jenna N.)

H4. Describe what you think was the greatest contribution to the world by classical India or China.

The Chinese invention of the compass was one of the most significant inventions in history. Without the knowledge of how to tell direction, exploring would have been impossible. (Jenna)

H5. Comment on how important "zero" is to mathematics or thought in general. You might speculate on why it took so long to discover and use it.

The ancient Greeks and all other cultures show from their accounts of the Beginning that a concept of nothing was unknown. Always there was something, Chaos it was called, and all matter and the elements were within this chaos. Until the Indians discovered zero that is, the mathematical numeral for nothing, the place-holder of the Arabic number system. ... (Cole)

H6. The lecture says that John the Apostle, the author of the Gospel of John, was a teenager. How old do you think he was? Explain (thinking beyond the lecture and using the Bible may help).

A student pointed out that John is often portrayed by Hollywood as bearded, or at least as an adult. But much evidence points to his being a very young teenager - perhaps younger than every student in this class! See Conservapedia's Mystery:Was John a Child? (Instructor)

H?) This is not in the lecture, but it pertains to Jesus. I wonder why God had Jesus die at such a young age. I mean obviously it was perfect timing for reasons we do not know, but don’t you think Jesus could have converted more people had he lived a bit longer? (Jonathan L.)

You describe a good mystery. Perhaps Jesus wasn't as young as we think. The Bible simply says he was less than 50. But more to your point, Jesus as one person could never reach nearly as many as his dozens and hundreds of initial disciples could. They could not spread out and evangelize the world until Jesus left them, and an older Jesus would have meant older and less active disciples. Sounds plausible to me, anyway. In other words, like a successful business, Jesus leveraged and delegated authority for success. (Instructor)
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