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Comparative Study of Western and Eastern Philosophy on the Premises of Epistemological, Ontological and Ideological Differences and Similarities Between the Two Regions


Comparatively, the eastern and western philosophies on psychology have certain differences in how each apprehends the truth. On some occasions, the foundation of these differences and similarities are pegged on the aim and systemic philosophical foundations of understanding human life, nature, and metaphysics of the universes (Mark, 2016). In this apprehension of truth, each philosophical divide pegs the artificial boundaries of their differences on the distinctive elements of epistemology, ontology, and the comparative ideology in the discourse of philosophizing the truth around human psychology (Mark, 2016). In applying this philosophical foundation, the eastern and western philosophy systemizes the artificial boundaries between the two traditions into a lifetime of the fundamental distinction of the root, route, and discourse of either philosophical understanding (Mark, 2016). The eastern philosophy of psychology comparative to western philosophy highly depends on the ideological, ontological, and epistemological foundations of each philosophical tradition’s derivative from religion, social and political discourse of either easterners or westerners.

Comparative Ideology Between Western and Eastern Philosophy

The philosophy of psychology is a high derivative of the Hindu religion in eastern societies. Hindu way of life forms the ideological, conceptual, theories, and concepts of human psychology. Among these ideologies, religion was the central cultural foundation that determines the outlay of society’s perception of social lives (Nivison, 2016). The dominant face of religion like Hinduism is sound policy as an ethical core of the Asian moral and political society (Nivison, 2016). This moral and ethical philosophy of the Asian culture anchored on the principles of Hinduism determined the behavior exposition of the community, among which Alcohol played an integral role.

In Eastern philosophy, the ideals of religion directly affect psychology in principle, the application, and the discourse of human life (Nivison, 2016). The ideals of these eastern religions became the ultimate values of maintaining law and order and enduring the status quo in society hence building the foundation of how other concepts and psychological ideologies (Nivison, 2016). The establishment of Hindu ideologies, which includes ceremonial practices with the engagement of alcohol drinking, marriage, health wellbeing in the traditional Asian societies, gave the psychology of society a focal point of religious identity and mindfulness of the role of religion in shaping socio-political and cultural perspectives in the society (Nivison, 2016).

Building from the concepts of religion, a critical discourse of eastern philosophy is the role of Confucianism in establishing a societal set of values, political principles, ethical guidelines, and social benchmarks that over the years became the ideological foundation of eastern philosophy. Confucianism is the holistic description of values, principles, traditions, and ways of life that covers both the rationalistic and humanistic religions of the society (Waley, 2012). The role of Confucianism is to establish a set of characteristics, behaviors, and ways people should live to achieve harmony as an important value in society (Nivison, 2016). Characterized as a system of ethical and social philosophy, ruism/Confucianism is foundationally built on the ancient religious principles of the Chinese society, which established the ideals of institutions, social values, and traditions of the Chinese communities (Waley, 2012). Ruism is preferably termed a ‘civil philosophy religion’ rather than a pure religion since; it has a sense of religious identity and elements that set the society’s moral obligations and values (Waley, 2012). Secondly, as a philosophy, ruism is considered a ‘diffused philosophy of religion’ since; Chinese society had no distinct separation between the church and other institutions such as family, state, priesthood, and schools.

Master Kong, the founder of Confucianism, did not intend to start a new religious frontier but interpret the law and statecrafts of the Chinese society in the perspective of philosophy intertwined with religious elements (Waley, 2012). The dominant face of Confucianism is sound policy, as an ethical core of the Chinese moral and political society (Nivison, 2016). As a philosophy, standard behavior as a primary requirement for social institutions and human relations dominated the mutual obligations of the philosophy of the stable, unified, civilized, and enduring social order within the society. As an ethical philosophy, the ideals of Confucius views ran against the legalists’ views of the state powers of his days. Only during the reign of Han Emperor Wu of 140-80 BC did his work of socio-political and religious ideologies become accepted as a primary state ideology (Waley, 2012).

The ideals of Confucianism philosophy became the ultimate values of maintaining law and order and enduring the status quo in society (Waley, 2012). The emperor established village lectures to introduce the teachings of Confucius’s ideals of morality and political order in tandem with the fundamental religious beliefs of the Chinese society (Waley, 2012). The imperial families sponsored books and events that promoted Confucius values such as loyalty to the government, respect to parents, and ethical farming; hence, the model of philosophical ideas of Confucianism was to establish a longstanding social stratification of the society. As a holistic philosophy, the values of Confucianism stressed the humanistic element of kindness, love, virtue, and co-humanity (Waley, 2012). Humanness (ren) solidified society’s rituals and enhanced ethical maturation, which allowed the conformity of the society to the social roles, development of appropriate character, and cultivation of the right conscience for co-existence.

Comparatively, while the eastern philosophy on psychology is founded on purely religious grounds, the western philosophy is grounded on the contractual traditions that are directly aimed at emphasizing the right order in the state and are ratified through agreements among equals the protect specific interests of the society (Mark, 2016). The core to this philosophical foundation of westernism is furthered by the ideology of the human race’s innate rights and fundamental freedoms. Foundationally, the western philosophical derive critical principles of application from secular reasoning, rationality, and objective assessment of the instruments of state while seeking to build a balanced society that embraces ethics, religion, and secularism as the foundational elements of western societies (Mark, 2016). The discursive rationality of the western traditions is a powerful land supreme experience that themes the strains upon which the natural outgrowth of the state is fashioned. In this discourse of discursive rationalism, the emphasis on political and social bonds of westernism is the foundation of the assumption that western philosophical output is a result of using evidence, rational judgment, and inductive approach of society as the ultimate yardstick of building the philosophies of different facets of life (Chung & Hyland, 2011).

In this radical standard of evidence as to the order of interests in the society, the embedded cultural practices that are distinctive belief systems of the society becomes the fundamental viewpoint of the sanity and rationality of the discursive knowledge and evidence determined by the state as the guiding philosophy of power, social environment, and the cultural setting. The western principles of philosophy peg the fundamentals of understanding on the judgments of sensible human life, egalitarian knowledge (believing that all humans have equal access to truth, and establishment of high-value life process suitable for building longstanding principles and philosophies of a stable society (Chung & Hyland, 2011). Over time, western philosophy bent to the Christian religion. In this modern western philosophy, critical elements of human nature such as goodness, compassion, and forgiveness are embedded in the socio-cultural understanding of a sound human life (Chung & Hyland, 2011).

Epistemology Of Eastern and Western Philosophy

Epistemology is the philosophy of students on the elements of limits of human knowledge, the nature, and the origin of this knowledge. The discourse of epistemology stems forms the metaphysics of ethics, logic, and rationality as the core foundations and origins of human knowledge and understanding (Wong, 2001). The common portrait in the differences between western and the eastern philosophical discourses on the elements of the philosophical inquiry applied in each society. In eastern philosophy, the philosophy is the foundation on the wisdom of literature designed primarily to move the audience and integrative these pearls of wisdom into the ways of life through adoption and popular acceptance of such confirmations over times becomes the rational philosophy of nature and nurture of the eastern society (Wong, 2001).

Western philosophy is built on systematic argumentation and theory that is discursive rationality building on deductive reason, inferencing, and generating conclusions to avoid high-level generalizations of concepts. The results of such argumentation are that the deductive reasoning of the society invokes a wide scope of original insights and hence, creates a more balanced judgment and articulation of human nature, innate needs, and value systems (Chung & Hyland, 2011). The adaptivity of these philosophical discourses in western society became the super-principles of circumstantial judgment and a tool of conflict resolution. The paradigms of acknowledging the necessity and value systems in tensions in the Chinese society during administering social order could not yield a predetermined balance of justice since the judgment on the philosophical ground shifted depending on the appropriate model of dealing with the situation. The honorary value system of the eastern philosophy lacked the functionality of a deductive and rational approach to any of the fundamentals of equity and equality since the philosophical foundation of such a justice system is pegged on elements of familial loyalties.

The eastern philosophy is highly invitational in its approach to persuasion. It portrays life as a vivid fashion of the present audience and adopts such perception as the ideal judgment system in such a translation of the audience. The frame of success of such philosophical identities became the downside of the judgment due to the failure of others to recognize the merits of such invitational thinking to appease the different nature of the audience targeted (Wong, 2001). The prospects of vital energies such as uprightness and special strength for tranquility and peaceful living became far greater elements of persuasion over time than the circumstantial judgments in the society.

Comparatively, while eastern Philosophy is invitational, western philosophy is argumentative hence building a degree of absolute contrast in studying the epistemology of human psychology and philosophy of life. The argumentative assimilation of western philosophy, as argued by western philosophers such as Aristotle and Plato, undernotes that human life is determined by analytical arguments presented in Book 1 “Republic” as its acts as a seer for both the young and old generation (Mark, 2016). The dispatches of this argument are that, in articulating human life, young people cannot fully assimilate life since they do not have possies enough experience to make rational and highly binding arguments. Hence, the foundation of the Book 1 is to build a lasting set of thoughts, applications, ideals, and principles that is applicable across generations.

Comparative Ontology of Eastern and Western Philosophy

Ontology is the “science of being” argumentatively builds its applicative on the role of philosophy as the study of what neutrally applies to human conditions and elements of critical life functionality. While eastern philosophy is built on the general conditions of human existence, western philosophy aims at articulating specific elements of the human condition (Chung & Hyland, 2011). The overriding consequence of this variance is that the eastern philosophy is functionality and derivative driven by general knowledge while the western concepts are built on specific knowledge (Waley, 2012). As argued by Plato, Western philosophy is geared towards striving to disco er the specific goals that define true and real in life. At the same time, the Confucius concepts deal with both the inner and outer life of a person as inducting a more holistic conceptualization of human beings.

The core focus of eastern philosophy is building a holistic human experience in life and improving the overall quality of life. According to eastern philosophy, the holistic quality of Life perspective is highly influenced by culture and family values. The unsurprising pursuit of such desires is to have a quality of life that conforms to the cultural, religious, and family settings. Quality of life revolves around every aspect. With this evolution comes expectations such as progressive education, wealth accumulation, family stability, political consciousness, and health configuration as the meta elements of holistic growth in eastern philosophy (Wong, 2001). The quality of life among Asian societies involves perceptions, decisions, and interpretation of values that affect both families and society (Chung & Hyland, 2011). Through this complex inter-web of relationships, pursuit for a stable, culturally sensitive, and highly moralistic society puts everybody on the strict societal radar.


In conclusion, the comparative study on western and eastern philosophy of psychology as anchored on the epistemological, ontological, and ideological identifications shows critical elements of differences. These differences are on the origin, development, use, and application of the philosophies in championing human life. While western philosophy is primarily engineered by elements of argumentative, deductive reasoning, eastern philosophy is built on critical elements of Confucius’s arguments. The ideals of Confucianism are reformist in nature, spiritual, and idealistic. The principal value of the philosophy is to establish ideas for societal and family interaction, responsibility, and state authority over its subjects. Through the ideal wing of Confucianism and elemental foundation of a religious character, the entirety of the principle is philosophical in nature since; it transcended the religious, social, political, and economic realms of the society.


Chung, M. C., & Hyland, M. E. (2011). History and philosophy of psychology. John Wiley & Sons.

Mark, E. (2016). Similarities between Eastern & Western philosophy. Internet, published17.

Nivison, D. S. (2016): The ways of Hindu: Investigations in Asian philosophy. Open Court Publishing.

Waley, A. (2012). The analects of Confucius. Routledge.

Wong, D. (2001). Comparative philosophy: Chinese and western.


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