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No ban was placed on the gods of mountains and winds, ancestral spirits, and the like; but they were no longer judged to be central, or even important. Confucianism was an explicit adjustment to the new realities, aligning itself with power in a more hands on, less transcendent way than some other Axial Age spiritualisms. In this way, a further civilizational colonization was effected, at the level of the individual personality. Internalization of a rigid ruling edifice, minus theology but disciplined by an elaborate code of behavior, was the Confucian way that reigned in China for two thousand years. These extremely cursory snapshots of Axial Age societies may serve to at least introduce some context to Jaspers' formulation of a global spiritual "breakthrough". The mounting Adidas Yeezy Ladies Uk
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had become the familiar seated god figure and Buddhism the official religion of India, as decreed by Asoka, last of the Mauryan dynasty. Earlier, Bronze Age polytheism resembled that found elsewhere, complete with a variety of spirits, nature and fertility festivals, etc. , corresponding to less specialized, smallerscale modes of livelihood. Thus the indigenous spiritual traditions, including shamanism and local nature cults, were overtaken by a context of severe technological and political change. Taoism was a part of this age of upheaval, offering a path of detachment and otherworldliness, while preserving strands of animist spiritual tradition. An emphasis on simplicity and an anti state outlook put Taoism on a collision course with the demands of higher civilization in China. were a pivotal time frame, and the opposed messages of Lao tse and Confucius were typical of Axis Age alternatives. Instead of a longing for the virtuous time of the "noble savage", before class divisions and division of labor, the Confucian doctrine combined cultural progressivism with the abandonment of connections with nature.
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favor of civilization, bringing it to a new level of domination. The yoke of domestication was modernized and fitted anew, more tightly than before. The spiritual realm was decisively circumscribed, with earlier, earth based creeds rendered obsolete.
Civilization's original victory over freedom and health was renewed and expanded, with so much sacrificed in the updating process. The whole ground of spiritual practice was altered to fit the new requirements of mass civilization. The Axial Age religions offered "salvation" at the price of freedom, self sufficiency, and much of what was left of face to face community. Henceforth, they could operate more freely within the conquered terrain of service and worship. Ross Douthat, op ed columnist for The New York Times, has written an insightful piece on the the movie Avatar , where he lifts up its invocation of religious responses to Nature. The question is whether Nature actually deserves a religious response. . Nature is suffering and death.
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