Friday, December 01, 2006

Tao Te Ching: #33

I am trying to put up a few little story ideas today, but when Lee mentioned the "Tao Te Ching"....and seeing as how someone has borrowed my copy of "Zen Flesh:Zen Bones", well, I just couldn't help myself, honest Officer, it was this or the chocolate.

#33


Knowing others is intelligence;
knowing yourself is true wisdom.
Mastering others is strength;
mastering yourself is true power.

If you realize that you have enough,
you are truly rich.
If you stay in the center
and embrace death with your whole heart,
you will endure forever.



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When you meet someone that's into philosophy, and you say can you reconcile Western and Eastern philosophy? you can see smoke coming out of their ears. First, they can't decide which Western philosophy to pick, existentialism, phenomenology (American School) etc. and please don't worry. Same problem with Eastern. The really smart ones suddenly seize upon a realization, Western philosophy focuses on the individual and his relationship to the environment and society, and the differences. Eastern philosophy tends to focus on the environment and making the individual part of it. Any thoughts?

7 comments:

Claudia said...

tomato, tomahto...one comes from the east, one comes from the west. what happens when the two arrive at the same place? what happens if they keep going?

The CEO said...

Claudia- depends on the size of the tree that fell, the size of the wooded area, and what the people who might have been listening were actually doing.

Claudia said...

lol

Pickled Olives said...

Here is your solution:

In two hundred years when the planet is over run with commercialism, philosophy will no longer exist. East-west: reconciled

Crankster said...

In a surprisingly large number of ways, they seem to arrive at the same conclusion. For example, the concept of the middle path in Eastern philosophy is reminiscent of Aristotle.

If one live one's relationship with society and the environment in a thoughtful, purposeful way, wouldn't one be on the path to becoming an integrated part of the environment?

Obviously, I'm oversimplifying, but still...

cmhl said...

I was once friendly with someone that was way into zen, and ever since I have difficult time thinking about it with an open mind.

The CEO said...

CMHL, your friend W, read a lot of Zen, but he didn't really make it a part of him. It's easy to discuss, much harder to live.

There is a story in Zen about the monk who was tending his garden. One day, the police accused him of raping a girl in the village. He said he didn't, and continued to hoe his row. The people in the village vilified him, yet he continued to hoe his row.For five years this continued. Then, one day, the rapist was caught. A few of the people apologized to the priest for falsely accusing him, and invited him to return to the village. He never did, he continued to hoe his roe, for he knew who he was, and who he had always been.

CM, you have just been hoeing your roe, and W couldn't see the woods because there was a tree in his way. Not that I have an opinion, naturally.