Download An Introduction to Daoist Thought: Action, Language, and by Eske Møllgaard PDF

By Eske Møllgaard

ISBN-10: 0203944828

ISBN-13: 9780203944820

ISBN-10: 041542383X

ISBN-13: 9780415423830

This is often the 1st paintings to be had in English which addresses Zhuangzi’s suggestion as an entire. It provides an interpretation of the Zhuangzi, a booklet in thirty-three chapters that's the most vital selection of Daoist texts in early China. the writer introduces a fancy interpreting that exhibits the team spirit of Zhuangzi’s inspiration, specifically in his perspectives of motion, language, and ethics. through addressing methodological questions that come up in interpreting Zhuangzi, a hermeneutics is constructed which makes knowing Zhuangzi’s spiritual proposal attainable. A theoretical contribution to comparative philosophy and the cross-cultural examine of non secular traditions, the e-book serves as an advent to Daoism for graduate scholars in faith, philosophy, and East Asian stories.

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Extra info for An Introduction to Daoist Thought: Action, Language, and Ethics in Zhuangzi (Routledge Studies in Asian Religion and Philosophy)

Sample text

Furthermore, the sage will not only succeed 40 THE DRIVE TOWARDS COMPLETION easily but also inevitably. The sage, who discerns and adapts to the unfolding of the potential of the situation, will without fail gain supremacy, for, Jullien writes, “the potential of the situation makes it impossible that things ‘should be otherwise’ ” (2004a: 27). This idea of the inevitable unfolding of the potential of a situation is as thoroughly metaphysical as, say, Plato’s theory of Forms, it is just that in China the metaphysical ideal, namely the ideal of a completely successful flexible response to the inevitable unfolding of the real, is not placed in some other world that is accessible only to theory but is situated right here in the world of human action and is attainable in practice.

They are no longer able to govern themselves, and morality deteriorates into mere moralism, where the demands put on others are only an excuse for not facing the demands that are always already placed on oneself. For Zhuangzi there is a deep connection between moralism and technical cleverness: both focus on mastering the outer and neglect the inner; both are fragmented and anxious states; and both lose touch with the movement of the Way. Therefore, in transcending the drive for technical mastery, Zhuangzi’s sage remains unaffected by the moralistic praise and blame of the outer world of man (ren), and he exhibits a certain absentmindedness in his dealings with the world of man, which is an indication that he has withdrawn from that world and is in contact with the inner or the movement of the Way.

In other words, the way of the sages consists in that drive towards completion and wish for great results that is the essence of technical mastery. However, after having met the gardener Zigong realizes that the opposite is true: to truly follow the way of the sages, one must forget all about results, profit, mechanical ingenuity, and skillfulness. A person who is able to do this, says Zigong, is unaffected by praise and blame and oblivious to whatever the common opinion may be (12/57–67). This story contains the main points of the critique of technical action that we find in the Zhuangzi.

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An Introduction to Daoist Thought: Action, Language, and Ethics in Zhuangzi (Routledge Studies in Asian Religion and Philosophy) by Eske Møllgaard

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