Religion in China - from antiquity to the present day

Which religion prevails in China

Buddhism, Taoism, Protestantism, Catholicism and other religions have existed and spread in the Middle Kingdom over the entire history of its existence, which gives the right to call it a country with many confessions.

Today, the state protects freedom of religion. Every citizen has the right to practice religious cults and rituals. So it is spelled out in the Constitution of the Celestial Empire. The country attaches particular importance to religion; for the majority of the country's citizens, belonging to a particular religion and national pride are at the same level.

Religion of Ancient China

The state has never strictly centralized the religious sphere. The Chinese, both poor and rich in antiquity, believed in three main schools of thought, which prevailed to varying degrees in different regions of the country.

In the religion of ancient China, there were no priests in the usual sense, deities and temples that were erected in their honor. The priestly functions had to be performed by officials, and various spirits personifying natural forces and the deceased ancestors of the Shandi were the highest deities.

The peasants had high hopes that they would get an excellent harvest, so the cult of the spirits of the earth was very important. They were offered sacrifices, prayed, and special rituals were performed.

In ancient China, it was believed that Heaven rewards all virtuous people, and the unworthy, on the contrary, drips. The emperor was considered "the son of Heaven", was under his special patron, but he could rule the country only by preserving virtue. If this quality was lost, the emperor lost the right to rule.

Everything in the religion of ancient China was divided into beginnings: yin, as a masculine principle, and yang, as a feminine one. The entire visible universe was the result of a close and harmonious interaction between these principles.

We will consider the main types of ancient Chinese religion further.


The world famous philosopher Confucius compiled a philosophical teaching and instruction, which was called Confucianism. His followers and disciples developed this teaching. It is believed that Confucianism was founded at the end of the 6th century, later spreading to Japan and Korea.

Confucianism is not just a religion, it is a way of life and ethical instruction, and only then a philosophical school.

Confucianism was considered the dominant religion in China during the reign of emperors in the country, it was he who laid the basic principles of Chinese society.

China is a state where different religions coexist peacefully. In addition to the three most widespread religions (Buddhism, Islam, Christianity), Taoism and Confucianism are preached in the PRC, which can be successfully combined in one temple, as well as representatives of other various confessions.

Philosophy and main features of religious cults in China

The philosophy of the Chinese has a great influence on all aspects of their life: politics, economy, culture and faith. The main feature of religious life in the PRC is the diversity of its directions and spiritual pluralism. Freedom of confession is specified in the Constitution of the country.

Which religions are the main ones in the PRC

Among modern Chinese, the most popular are two religious movements - Taoism and Confucianism.


This Chinese religion appeared in the 6th century. BC ... The great philosopher Confucius is recognized as the progenitor of this trend, but 2 other thinkers who also made a significant contribution to its development cannot be deleted: Men-tzu and Sun-tzu. Their treatises also became the basis for the development of this religion.

Confucianism describes the relationship between:

  • Parents and children.
  • Ruler and subjects,
  • Brother and brother.
  • Friends.
  • Husband and wife.

In the old days, the study of Confucianism was always recognized as aristocratic. This teaching was supported by the imperial dynasty of China. The main idea of ​​Confucianism is to humanize the entire established society, where every person has his own place in the existing social structure. Adherence to this cult fosters in people the desire for goodness, mercy, honor and devotion. It remains relevant now, quite common in various parts of the world.

Fact. In the PRC, this trend is called the "school of scientists." "Confucianism" is an exclusively Western concept with no exact translation in Chinese.

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