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Title: A shared vision of human excellence: Confucian spirituality and arts education
Authors: Tan, Charlene H. P. (Charlene Hwee Phio)
Tan, Leonard Yuh Chaur
Keywords: Arts education
Confucian spirituality
Human excellence
Music education
Issue Date: 2016
Citation: Tan, C., & Tan, L. (2016). A shared vision of human excellence: Confucian spirituality and arts education. Pastoral Care in Education, 34(3), 156-166.
Abstract: Spirituality encourages the individual to make sense of oneself within a wider framework of meaning and see oneself as part of some larger whole. This article discusses Confucian spirituality by focussing on the spiritual ideals of the dao (Way) and he (harmony). It is explained that the Way represents a shared vision of human excellence that is embodied in the guiding discourse inherited from one’s cultural predecessors. The Confucian Way covers all the manifestations of Zhou culture, including its knowledge base, values, beliefs, and practices that have been passed down through the generations. The Way is achieved through harmony where human beings find inner peace as well as co-exist with one another and their surroundings. Harmony encompasses an appreciation of beauty, joy and ethical values that are obtained through arts education. The essay further illustrates an application of Confucian spiritual ideals through music education in a school. A Confucian aim of learning, the article concludes, is one that fosters spiritual development and contests the performativity agenda and school culture.
Description: This is the final draft, after peer-review, of a manuscript published in Pastoral Care in Education. The published version is available online at
ISSN: 0264-3944 (print)
1468-0122 (online)
Other Identifiers: 10.1080/02643944.2016.1167109
Appears in Collections:Journal Articles

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