However, because of their unique identity as sorcerers, Chinese philosophers were not merely pursuing knowledge out of a pure "love of wisdom" as did their western counterparts. While they also tried their best to explain naturally occurring phenomena, what concerned them most were social issues. The purpose of learning the "orders of things" was to provide a better and more complet systematic explanation to human matters, rather than solving the problem of the absence of spiritual dependence after the collapse of primitive religious beliefs in ancient China.
The specific social and historical conditions that nurtured the birth of Chinese philosophers have not only contributed to the features of Chinese philosophy, but also influenced the characters of Chinese people."To examine heavenly order to learn human affairs," -- perhaps considered the prime task by ancient Chinese philosophers --characterized Chinese philosophy with the distinct feature of giving great attention to societal needs. The focal point on people led to Chinese philosophers’ suffering and worries about society, especially at the times of social chaos.
On the other hand, ancient Chinese had a good tradition of theoretical thinking. Though the focus was always on human affairs, Chinese philosophers were always looking for a reason to develop thought that explained ordinary or mundane affairs of the day-to-day world.