quotes, Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching
[Chuang Tzu, Taoism, quotations]
Taoist Mysticism, quotations, Chuang Tzu

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Chuang Tzu quotations

  Some two and a half thousand years ago two enduring philosophic-religious traditions emerged in China. One of these, Confucianism, is not directed towards exploiting or exploring Mystical Wisdom the other, Taoism, is.

  Lao Tzu was one of the earlier figures of note in the Taoist tradition, his teachings are associated with a central Taoist text called the Tao Te Ching - a title which has been translated as "the Way and its Power".

 Taoism holds that those who live in full sympathy and harmony with original nature are also, inevitably and beneficially, attuned to the Way. Those who defy original nature rarely find tranquility.

 The influence and appeal of Taoism was much enhanced by the writings of one Chuang Tzu who lived some two centuries after Lao Tzu.

 The following two quotations are both drawn from the writings of Chuang Tzu. Although a range of quotations fully comparable, and complementary, to those from other World Religions could be presented here the translation we would like to use is still subject to some (restricted) copyright limitations so only two brief "placeholding" quotations from Chuang Tzu are presented.

Disdain for Material Things

 Chuang Tzu put on cotton clothes with patches in them, and arranging his girdle and tying on his shoes,
( to keep them from falling off)
went to see the prince of Wei.
"How miserable you look, Sir!" Cried the prince. "It is poverty, not misery", replied Chuang Tzu. "A man who has TAO cannot be miserable. Ragged clothes and old boots make poverty, not misery".

Chuang Tzu
Chap 20



Purity of Heart

 When Tzu Kung went south to the Ch'u State on his way back to the Chin State, he passed through Han-yin. There he saw an old man engaged in making a ditch to connect his vegetable garden with a well. He had a pitcher in his hand, with which he was bringing up water and pouring it into the ditch, great labour with very little result. "If you had a machine here," cried Tzu Kung, "in a day you could irrigate a hundred times your present area. The labour required is trifling as compared with the work done. Would you like to have one?" "What is it?" asked the gardener. "It is a contrivance made of wood," replied Tzu Kung, "Heavy behind and light in front. It draws up water as you do with your hands but in a constantly flowing stream. It is called a well sweep." Thereupon the gardener flushed up and said, " I have heard from my teacher that those who have cunning implements are cunning in their dealings and that those who are cunning in their dealings have cunning in their hearts, and that those who have cunning in their hearts cannot be pure and incorrupt, and that those who are not pure and incorrupt are restless in spirit and not fit vehicles for TAO. It is not that I do not know of these things. I should be ashamed to use them."

Chuang Tzu
Chap 12



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Chuang Tzu