Wisdom in chinese thought and biblical writings: A comparative study in religious education

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Arts in Language and Literature Major in Literature

Subject Categories

English Language and Literature


College of Liberal Arts


Literature, Department of

Thesis Adviser

Isagani R. Cruz

Defense Panel Chair

Florentino Timbreza

Defense Panel Member

Basilio P. Balajadia
Bee Ching Ong
Mary Serafica M. Tolentino
Narciso Erquiza, FSC


This dissertation is a comparative study between the Biblical Wisdom Literature and the Chinese thought, particularly, Confucianism and Taoism.The study has been limited to the Chinese concept of wisdom as it appears in the works of the Four Books, Tao-Te Ching, Chuang-Tzu, and the Hebrew concept of wisdom in the Biblical literature, mainly the Old Testament, and a small portion of the Four Gospels. As regards the method of study used, there are two areas of research--the biblical and the historical.The Chinese concept of wisdom asserts that wisdom comprises those ideas and actions that are in harmony with reason and ethical principles, whereas the Hebrew concept of wisdom in the Bible claims that the wisdom of God is revealed in both creation and redemption. Similarities between the Chinese and the Hebrew concepts of wisdom exist, while the differences between the Chinese and the Hebrew concepts of wisdom also exist.From the wealth of Chinese thought and experience one sketches three sources not yet theologically utilized:The bi-polarity in the unity of yin and yang pervades the whole creation. This precious insight into the very center of life's mystery could be analogically applied to the mystery of the Blessed Trinity. The Father appears in the face of yang, the Son in the face of yin, and the Holy Spirit as the mysterious unifying power of love. In this way Chinese yin-yang philosophy is incorporated in a very positive way into a Christian theology.

The Tao-te-ching peers deeply into the mystery of weakness and power, of death and new life. The face of the Suffering Servant of God appears to the Christian reader. The countenance of Jesus bears the features of water, noninterference, humility, emptiness, and weakness (unto the cross) but also precisely in that the traits of the overwhelming love of God. Through Jesus the darkness of death is absorbed into the mysterious strength of the life-creating love of God. The resurrected Lord wants, like the tao, to be very near, but not obtrusively so.

Abstract Format






Accession Number


Shelf Location

Archives, The Learning Commons, 12F Henry Sy Sr. Hall

Physical Description

109 leaves


Wisdom; Thought and thinking; Chinese language -- Writing

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