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Difference between Eastern and Western Philosophy Essay

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The history of philosophy is full of dichotomies.  Concepts such as empiricism vs. rationalism, permanence vs. change, appearance vs. reality, monism vs. dualism, and the problem of the One vs. the Many, all have become part of the history of philosophy.  The same is true for Eastern and Western Philosophy.  While at certain points these two philosophies converge, the dichotomy between the two philosophies is not merely geographical but substantial as well.

Eastern Philosophy is the philosophy found in the Asian continent which includes Indian Philosophy such as Hinduism, Chinese Philosophy such as Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism, Japanese Philosophy, such as Zen Buddhism and Iranian Philosophy such as Zoroastrianism.  On the other hand, Western Philosophy is the philosophy found in the Western countries which is classified according to era beginning with Greek Philosophy, Medieval Philosophy, Renaissance Philosophy and Modern Philosophy.

Both philosophies also differ in their concept of Religion.  In Eastern Philosophy, their religion is integrated with their philosophy and is considered as their way of life.  For instance, Buddhism is not only a school of philosophic thought but is also a religion for Chinese.  On the other hand, in Western philosophy religion is either opposed or considered separate from their philosophy.  For instance, doing the right thing is a desired end not because of religion but because it is considered as the ultimate good for man.

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Both philosophies also differ in how they see the relationship between God and the physical universe.  Eastern philosophy considers God as one with the physical reality. (Tony Page 1)  For instance, Buddhism sees God as present everywhere and can be found in trees, soil, or even water.  On the other hand, God is either disavowed by atheist philosophers or considered distinct and separate from the universe.

 Cited Works

Page, Tony.  “God in Buddhism: Is there One?”  Hollisticshop.co.uk.  2005.  January 2, 2009.              <http://www.holisticshop.co.uk/itemdetl.php/itemprcd/cnt-lib-bud-gbu>

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Hi, I am Sara from Studymoose

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