How “China” Created Europe. The Birth of the Enlightenment Secularism from the Spirit of Confucianism (in Polish)

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Dawid Rogacz

Abstract

The aim of the article is to demonstrate that the contact between European philosophy and Chinese culture in the 17th and 18th centuries had an influence on the emergence and development of secularism, which became a distinctive feature of the Western Enlightenment. In the first part, I examine in what way knowledge of the history of China and the Confucian ethics contested the Biblical chronology and undermined faith as a prerequisite for morality. Subsequently, I analyze the attempts to refute these allegations, reinterpreting Confucianism as crypto-monotheism. In the third part, I will show how the debate on Chinese culture has contributed to the birth of the secular philosophy of history, which put an end to the Enlightenment Sinophilia. In conclusion, I will present the main limitations of the thesis about the influence of Chinese thought on the birth of secularism.

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Rogacz, Dawid. 2018. “How ‘China’ Created Europe. The Birth of the Enlightenment Secularism from the Spirit of Confucianism (in Polish)”. Diametros 54 (54), 138-60. https://doi.org/10.13153/diam.54.2017.1137.
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Author Biography

Dawid Rogacz, Adam Mickiewicz University

Dawid Rogacz, M.A.
Adam Mickiewicz University
Institute of Philosophy
ul. Szamarzewskiego 89c,
PL-60-568 Poznań

E-mail: dawid.rogacz@amu.edu.pl

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