How do the concepts of Yin and Yang help explain the two main Chinese religious traditions of Taoism and Confucianism?

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The idea of Yin and Yang permeates not only these two schools of thought but scores of philosophies, ideologies, and religions in eastern culture. The core concept of Yin and Yang is abstract but fairly simple. It is a concept that implies that the universe is largely governed by a binary or, more explicitly, a duality. This duality can be represented in many different ways, such as light and dark, good and evil, or even push and pull. The idea is that the very nature of the universe implies some sort of contention, some balancing act that pushes it forward in time. Indeed, the virtue at the center of the idea of Yin and Yang is balance.

It is not hard to see the relation between the concept and Taoism. In fact, some scholars maintain that Yin and Yang originates completely from Taoism. In this philosophy, harmony and balance, in not only nature but self as well, are of the utmost importance and virtue.

In terms of Confucianism, the idea of Yin and Yang is related to the struggle of...

(The entire section contains 4 answers and 925 words.)

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