Western vs Eastern Philosophy

Philosophy has been around there for about more than a hundred years as many traditions and schools of thought have developed over the years. The difference between Western and Eastern philosophical tradition is one of the most fundamental. Different ways of understanding the universe and human experience are the result of the autonomous development of these two philosophical systems. It stands out for its emphasis on reason, individuality and logic. Western philosophy strongly emphasizes the capacity of the human mind and strives for a critical understanding of reality. Aristotle, Descartes and Kant are some of the well knows philosophers who are often associated with this school of thought. Eastern philosophy, stems from the eastern part of the world having its roots in Indian, Chinese and Japanese cultures. It places great emphasis on spirituality and morality and emphasizes the interconnectedness of all things. Eastern philosophy sees the world as a complex network of often interdependent phenomena, offering a more holistic perspective to understand it. Eastern philosophers believe that inner peace and enlightenment can be achieved through mindfulness and meditation. Confucius, Lao-Tzu and Buddha are some well-known names in Eastern philosophy. Their understanding of ethics is another important difference. Western philosophy often focuses on abstract notions of justice and morality, often based on individual rights and freedoms. Eastern philosophy, on the other hand, often emphasizes the value of social harmony and group welfare, while emphasizing qualities such as compassion and humility. Understanding the nature of reality and the human experience is a common interest of Western and Eastern philosophy.

Western philosophy tends to place more emphasis on the value of individual components than on the whole. Instead of seeing things like the mind and body as two equal but opposed elements that make up a larger whole, we tend to regard them as two separate portions with separate identities. This mindset permeates American society on a daily basis, whether it is in politics, religion, or even racial relations.

On the other side, eastern philosophy emphasises the entire. One reason for this is that Chinese and Indian sages never distinguished between philosophy and religion or divided their philosophies into branches. Each of their teachings was designed to be a component of the eventual revelation of the One fact, not to be considered as a stand-alone fact. Eastern traditions emphasise the whole rather than the parts and place more emphasis on the esoteric (inner) facets of religion and philosophy. It places a greater emphasis on transcending the material world in order to discover one’s truly divine inner nature and role in the universe than it does on any fixed responsibility to a supernatural mystery god.

Both cultures recognize the limits of human understanding and try to find solutions to circumvent them. In addition, new developments in cognitive science accelerated the fusion of Western and Eastern thought. Mindfulness meditation has profound effects on the brain and can change both its structure and function. According to this research, mindfulness techniques can be used to improve emotional control, well-being and cognitive function. These results encouraged Western interest in Eastern philosophies such as Taoism and Buddhism. In addition, new developments in cognitive science accelerated the fusion of Western and Eastern thought. These results encouraged Western interest in Eastern philosophies such as Taoism and Buddhism. The same mindset that reduced religion to a paternalistic God—a sky-daddy with a human personality—eternally distinct from yet always ruling over his helpless subjects—led to the development of science. With only rational analysis available to apply to issues like free will and morality, such a worldview results in ideologies that agonise over questions of meaning and direction, ultimately failing to achieve their goals.

It doesn’t matter which school of thought seems more logical or has more popularity both just exists to promote human understanding of societies and the self. So being the best of both worlds is the best path to move forward.

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