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History

The notion of the "Great Unity" appeared in the "Lǐyùn" (禮運) chapter of the Book of Rites, one of the Confucian Chinese classics.[2][3] According to it, the society in Great Unity was ruled by the public, where the people chose men of virtue and ability, and valued trust and harmony. People did not only love their own parents and children, but also secured the living of the elderly until their ends, let the adults be of use to the society, and helped the young grow. Those who were widowed, orphaned, childless, handicapped and diseased were all taken care of. Men took their responsibilities and women had their homes. People disliked seeing resources being wasted but did not seek to possess them; they wanted to exert their strength but did not do it for their own benefit. Therefore, selfish thoughts were dismissed, people refrained from stealing and robbery, and the outer doors remained open.[4]

The concept was used by Kang Youwei in his visionary utopian treatise, The Book of Great Unity (Chinese: 大同書).[5]

The Great Unity is also often mentioned in the writings of Sun Yat-sen and is included in his lyrics of the National Anthem of the Republic of China (Taiwan).

This ideology can be reflected in the following examples, each from a national anthem of the Republic of China (Taiwan):