Taoism cosmology

wil

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Yǐ​rù​: Yǐ is down-up , and ​rù​ is down ​. Does that make sense?
Yes it does....still ...are there others??
Just to let you know, the name William is correctly rendered into Chinese as 威廉 (Wēi​lián). That Yiru rendering I made up was just something that fit the cosmic principles contained in Taoism.​

Word dictionary - william - MDBG English to Chinese dictionary
yeah... I had been told though it is customary to pick a chinese name?
 

Nick the Pilot

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"...it is customary to pick a chinese name?"

--> I would say it is. When someone asks you in Chinese what your name is, it's just a heck of a lot easier for everyone if you pronounce it in a way they can understand. They are not going to understand you if you try to pronounce it in an English way. If you are speaking in Chinese, that is. If you are speaking in English, then say it the English way.
 

Nick the Pilot

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I thought it would be good to continue a discussion about the real Tao Te Ching.

Tao Te Ching line 2:

無名天地之始. 有名萬物之母.
Wú míng​ tiān dì​ zhī​ shǐ. yǒu míng​ wàn wù​ zhī​ mǔ​.
In silence, the heavens and earth began. From the Unmanifest and the manifest came the heaven and earth. The manifested Word [the Third Logos], the mother of all things, that from which all things have evolved.

---

Genesis 1:1

...darkness was over the face of the deep... And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.

---

These two quotes say the exact same thing, and show a commonality of this story in several major religions.
 

iBrian

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Nick,
Thanks for the references. It will take some time, but I plan to apply your translations to my several translations of the Tao Te Ching. Hopefully, a more complete understanding of the ancient text will open up. I also found the Theosophical reference to "The Secret Doctrine 1:328" interesting. I will explore the Theosophical view in more depth.

While any improvement to the translations of an ancient text is certainly valuable, the basic idea of an Original Being (or Divine Thought or Primal Cause) creating all that is from nothingness is already clear in the many translations of the Tao Te Ching.

I am a 67 year old man who is nearing the end of life having rejected most of the religious notions I have encountered. That said, I have not rejected the notion of God. I am a Theist. Having rejected all religions which are based on the Abrahamic myth, I sought out alternatives and found Tao to be not contrary to science and not requiring leaps of faith for its premises. Unfortunately, Taoism is a teaching dusty with age and written in ancient chinese which is problematic even for contemporary chinese scholars. Taoism also has the problem of ideas being taken out of context and mass marketed for profit (you can find a book on the Tao of just about anything).

The serious student of Taoism must wade through the piles of commercial drivel, weed out the Temple Taoist teachings which suffered the same fate through time as the Abrahimic religions, and try to arrive at the kernel of truth which many religions hold..... the existence of a Creator.

My recent readings of two books by Robert Augros: The New Science ... and... The New Biology reinforced my Theist belief. His books, in my opinion, should be required reading for any philosophy student studying The Divine Watchmaker analogy. Mr. Augros presents an excellent case for the abandonment of the materialist view brought on by the adoption of Darwin's theory.

Apologies again - post approved. :)
 

Thomas

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From a Christian POV I think Eriugena's fourfold division of nature offers a comparative text:

That which creates and is not created (ie the Triune God);
that which creates and is created (ie Primary Causes or Ideas);
that which is created and does not create (ie Temporal Effects, created things);
that which is neither created nor creates (ie God to Itself).

So the dichotomy of:
'(Conceived of as) having no name,
it is the Originator of heaven and earth;
(conceived of as) having a name,
it is the Mother of all things.'

is addressed in the fourfold nature, as the First and Fourth.

Eriugena followed the Mystical tradition of St Denys/the pseudoAreopagite, his genius was to recognise the primary determination of all nature and metanature is in the manner in which things may be said to be or not to be (Periphyseon, I.443c-446a). According to him, things accessible to the senses and the intellect are said to be, whereas anything which, ‘through the excellence of its nature’ (per excellentiam suae naturae), transcends our faculties are said not to be.

According to this classification, God and the Tao, because of their transcendence or absoluteness, can be said not to be, that is it cannot be spoken, because they transcend all categories of definition.

(The four 'divisions' are not a hierarchy in the usual sense of higher and lower orders. Rather the first and fourth division refer to God as the Beginning – en arche – and End of all things, the Alpha and Omega. The second and third express the unity of the cause-effect relation.)

Again, with regard to the manifest world, the Tao uses the term 'Mother' whereas Scripture uses such terms as 'Memra' (Hebrew, 'Word') and Arche (Greek. 'Principle') or Logos (Greek). Both Memra and Logos have a their correspondence in the sound symbol 'Aum' in Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism.
 
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Thomas

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According to Taoism,what is the reason we are created?
If one was to get all sage on one's backside, one would come out with some comment like 'who asks?'

My initial response to the metaphysical question 'why is there anything at all?' is 'why not?' in the sense of 'what is there to stop It manifesting Itself in every mode and possibility of its potentiality?' The relative is not other than the Absolute, it's an aspect of the absolute. If the Absolute is truly absolute it will manifest itself in every way it is, even in relative-ness and contingency, both being illusory, real from where we are, but not from where It is.

The point is there is no 'need', there is nothing to determine that the Tao must be the origin and source of all, it just is. If there was something necessitating it, then that would render the Tao subject to a greater-than-itself.
 
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