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Yin-Yang theories included in science literacy benchmark


05-02-2017 08:30 BJT

(Source: CGTN)

The ancient Chinese philosophical concept of Yin and Yang has been added to the nation's science literacy benchmark. Of course, it's a controversial idea. But the issue of Yin and Yang is not all black and white.

Slow and smooth. Each movement going in a circle. The practice of Taichi borrows plenty from the ancient Chinese theory of Yin-Yang, which says everything has two sides that are at once opposites and the same.

That theory has gone into a national benchmark of science literacy for all Chinese. It also includes the ideas of five elements, and that man and nature are of one entity.
Of course, it's met with controversy.

Sun Xiaochun is a professor at the Institute for History of Natural Sciences at the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He is one of the most vocal supporters of Yin-Yang's inclusion in measuring science literacy. 

"Yin-Yang is not today's science. But I welcome its inclusion in science literacy because it shows how ancient Chinese tried to understand the world in a systematic way. That's how science makes progress," Professor Sun Xiaochun with Chinese Academy of Sciences said.

He says knowing the ins and outs of Yin and Yang may lead to more breakthroughs.

"Science is never dead. You make new discoveries only when you have different perspectives. Instead of rote learning, you can only know science when you know its history," Professor Sun said.

People have believed in Taichi's benefits to the mind and body for thousands of years. Maybe, this ancient exercise can also lead to a better way of understanding science.

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