The Glory of the Future That Is Today (History 222: Asian Civilization, Reflection Paper)

Essay by esotericlsdUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, January 2006

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It has been said that he who controls the past controls the future. Our outlook of history influence the way we view the present, and therefore it may help and guide us as to what solutions we may give for existing problems. In history are stories and interpretations of human societies. With history; societies learn, grow, and progress. Without history, today's modernity would not be so modern. As a famous quotation by George Santayana says, "those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it".

As I ventured Asian civilization, a solitary significant point became apparent to me - whatever we do, we do for survival. We live to survive and sustain life for the next generation, as what civilizations have been doing up to this very moment. From families to clans, this group unit of societies later grew to empires or kingdoms. A system of order was established and a leader became necessary for monitoring, controlling, protecting, and building up its sovereignty.

Societal structure was realized to be a necessity and abolishment of which would mean chaos and destruction of a civilization.

Taking my inspiration from Chou dynasty, I was acquainted with the integral concept behind survival followed by sustenance. Such concepts during the reign of the Chou dynasty was first conceived through a great slave revolt against the misgovernment of Shang Dynasty. Because of that, and the cruelty of the latter dynasty - akin to making drinking cups using the skulls of its vanquished enemies, it lost the "Mandate (approval) of Heaven" and the former overthrew them. Such record is not merely a saga from the past. It encompasses not only the stories of our ancestors but as well as the ways, strategies, and approaches of how they struggled to survive which the present civilization may...