Geof Nanto

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About Geof Nanto

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    Nanto koan

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  1. Transgender Q&A

    For those who know what Jade Rod refers to in Chinese erotic literature it’s not surprising that Jade Spear can come across as a bit of a prick. Likewise, why he’d feel threatened by this topic. Hopefully he’ll practice withdrawal rather than continuing to thrust his opinions into a discussion where they are obviously not welcome and thereby show some sensitivity to intercourse on this forum. The way he is heading, the only sort of climax he’ll achieve is to get himself banned (which I wouldn’t like to see happen).
  2. Favorite translations

    The essence of the Yijing as a book of wisdom and oracle is its ability to give an avenue for the Shenming (gods; or in Jungian terms, the unconscious) to communicate with us. Hence, finding an interpretation written in language which speaks to our heart is essential. In this regard my favourite is Cleary’s translation of Liu Yiming’s Daoist alchemical interpretation, titled The Taoist I Ching. Wilhelm’s is also a must have and I use it in conjunction with Cleary’s. However, for someone new to the Yijing I’d highly recommend starting with the relatively recent translation by John Minford titled, “I Ching: The Essential Translation of the Ancient Chinese Oracle and Book of Wisdom.” (You can preview it on Kindle.) It is excellent, both for the quality of his translation and selected commentary, and also for gaining an overview of what the Yijing represents. (Minford also includes a translation of the Bronze Age text from the Zhou dynasty in the second half of the book which @Harmen and @Taoist Texts are referring to above. TT may care to read it for its comprehensive exploration of the Western scholarship over the last few decades which explores in great depth exactly those issues which he raises. For me personally though, this stuff has little relevance for how I use the book. I agree with Minford when he writes, “Modern attempts to divest the original Bronze Age Oracle of all its traditional clutter, despite their brilliance, somehow seemed dry and futile. In short, I missed the essential spiritual quality of the I Ching.” In other words, it is exactly the layers of interpretation which the original oracle has gained over the ensuing centuries which give the book its wisdom. )
  3. For me it was a matter of change or die. I wrote about it a while back in my PPD.
  4. Dao Bums (here i am)

    Yeah, I remember seeing glimpses of you in this video from when you were younger:
  5. Is Buddhism a complete path?

    As Jung has been mentioned a number of times in this discussion, here’s some further insight into his worldview for those who want to follow it up with their own research. Jung was very much a Daoist in the classical sense of the Daodejing and the Zhuangzi in that he believed we should allow Nature to take its course within ourselves (wuwei). He viewed the psyche (Mind in the greater sense) as a self-regulating system (like the body). For Jung, the psyche strives to maintain a balance between opposing qualities while at the same time actively seeking its own development or as he called it, individuation. Hence he decried so-called spiritual paths that told people how they should be, rather than simply freeing us to allow the Dao (or whatever other name one chooses to refer to the ineffable) to express itself fully through us: BTW I am one of those people like Jung mentions who have done "anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own souls". And yet I've gained plenty from these systems of teachings. They've given me a way in. In other writings Jung also speaks of how vital all these ancient spiritual traditions are.
  6. Is Buddhism a complete path?

    Here's a quotation from Jung's Red Book which provides some necessary nuance to this very general statement: The knowledge of the heart is in no book and is not to be found in the mouth of any teacher, but grows out of you like the green seed from the dark earth. Scholarliness belongs to the spirit of this time, but this spirit in no way grasps the dream, since the soul is everywhere that scholarly knowledge is not. But how can I attain the knowledge of the heart? You can attain this knowledge only by living your life to the full. You live your life fully if you also live what you have never yet lived, but have left for others to live or to think. You will say: "But I cannot live or think everything that others live or think." But you should say: "The life that I could still live, I should live, and the thoughts that I could still think, I should think." It appears as though you want to flee from yourself so as not to have to live what remains unlived until now. But you cannot flee from yourself. It is with you all the time and demands fulfillment. If you pretend to be blind and dumb to this demand, you feign being blind and deaf to yourself This way you will never reach the knowledge of the heart. The knowledge of your heart is how your heart is. From a cunning heart you will know cunning. From a good heart you will know goodness. So that your understanding becomes perfect, consider that your heart is both good and evil. You ask, "What? Should I also live evil?" The spirit of the depths demands: "The life that you could still live, you should live. Well-being decides, not your well-being, not the well-being of the others, but only well-being." Well-being is between me and others, in society. I, too, lived — which I had not done before, and which I could still do. I lived into the depths, and the depths began to speak. The depths taught me the other truth. It thus united sense and nonsense in me. I had to recognize that I am only the expression and symbol of the soul. In the sense of the spirit of the depths, I am as I am in this visible world a symbol of my soul, and I am thoroughly a serf, completely subjugated, utterly obedient. The spirit of the depths taught me to say: "I am the servant of a child." Through this dictum I learn above all the most extreme humility, as what I most need. The spirit of this time of course allowed me to believe in my reason. He let me see myself in the image of a leader with ripe thoughts. But the spirit of the depths teaches me that I am a servant, in fact the servant of a child. This dictum was repugnant to me and I hated it. But I had to recognize and accept that my soul is a child and that my God in my soul is a child.
  7. Wise TDB members

    For the definitive answer, I asked the oracle at Delphi who is the wisest one on Dao Bums. This is the answer I got: In the quiet serenity of a secluded bamboo grove, Socrates sat in contemplation, the gentle rustle of leaves the only sound breaking the stillness. As he meditated on the timeless wisdom of the Tao, he found himself pondering the enigmatic verses of the Daodejing. In verse after verse, Socrates perceived the boundless depth of the Tao, the eternal source from which all things arise and return. He marvelled at its ineffable nature, elusive yet ever-present, like the elusive mist that dances upon the mountaintops at dawn. With each passage, he glimpsed the interconnectedness of the universe, the seamless flow of yin and yang guiding all existence. Yet, as he delved deeper into the mysteries of the Tao, Socrates felt a profound sense of humility wash over him. He realized that the more he sought to understand, the more elusive the Tao became, slipping through his grasp like water through cupped hands. In the face of such boundless wisdom, Socrates saw the limitations of his own knowledge, like a flickering candle in the vast expanse of the night sky. In moments of quiet reflection, Socrates contemplated the paradox of wisdom. He saw that true wisdom lay not in the accumulation of knowledge, but in the recognition of one's own ignorance. Like a river flowing effortlessly towards the sea, wisdom emerged from the humble acknowledgment of the vastness of the unknown. And so, inspired by the teachings of the Daodejing, Socrates embraced the path of self-inquiry and questioning. He journeyed through the bustling streets and tranquil countryside, engaging in dialogues with sages and scholars alike. With each encounter, he sought not to impart knowledge, but to kindle the flame of inquiry within the hearts of others, guiding them towards their own path of self-discovery. In the end, Socrates found solace in the realization that true wisdom resided not in the possession of answers, but in opening to ever deeper mystery. Like a lone sage wandering beneath the vast expanse of the sky, he embraced the uncertainty of the journey, knowing that in the pursuit of wisdom, the destination mattered less than the path itself.
  8. May the Dragon and Tiger hold their place at the centre of Dao Bums!
  9. A bold flag for a failing dynasty. Flag of the Chinese Empire under the Qing dynasty (1889-1912)
  10. Happy New Year everyone

    “Where there is light, there must be shadow, and where there is shadow there must be light. There is no shadow without light and no light without shadow…It is as evil as we are positive… the more desperately we try to be good and wonderful and perfect, the more the Shadow descends to hell and becomes the devil. For it is just as sinful from the standpoint of nature and of truth to be above oneself as to be below oneself.” (From IQ84, quoted in an Amazon review of the book.) This is why the path to wholeness is so damn difficult, as I suspect @steve knows all too well within himself. I’m currently going through experiences which are both amazing and terrible, engulfed in an inner world of light and shadow which is taxing me to the limit.
  11. Siddhi - The mundane is the same as the mystical

    An interesting discussion. As my interest in in the Chinese traditions I did some research and found the term with a similar meaning to siddhi is 神通 shéntōng. It is used in the context of Buddhism but as far as I can tell Daoists do not use it (although it does apparently occur somewhere in the Zhuangzi). Maybe @Taoist Texts can elaborate on this. More relevant to this discussion, I did some further research and found the Sanskrit term “abhijñā" used in Buddhism to be similar to the term "siddhi". For my own interest, I asked ChatGPT to elaborate on the usage of those two terms: I think this is similar to what @Bindi is saying, namely anyone in the Buddhist tradition who claims the great siddhi of full enlightenment must also spontaneously manifest these 'lower' siddhi, otherwise the claim is without substance.
  12. 2023 Winter Solstice

    Where I live in Australia, the actual time of summer solstice is right now as I write. And by way of welcome respite from summer heat, nature has gifted us mild weather on this day of great significance. May the sun of compassionate warmth continue to shine on this forum, binding together like yin and yang the polar opposites within ourselves and within discussion here.
  13. An abrahamic sub-forum

    I’ll add my voice to the no camp. This forum already has a very broad focus and discussion of Abrahamic traditions in the way @NaturaNaturans suggests already occurs as the occasional General Discussion thread. That arrangement has catered sufficiently for interest in those traditions in the past and I see no reason to change it. More than this, I consider stretching the focus of this forum further by giving a dedicated space to Abrahamic traditions would be detrimental to its underlying identity as a place to explore Eastern Traditions, and detrimental to our loose sense of community as people who do not hold to those dominant monotheistic theologies of Christianity and Islam which more than half the world’s population identify as. Those traditions already have a strong voice, no need to elevate their status here.
  14. Everything is perfect?

    From Carl Jung: "There is no place where those striving for consciousness could find absolute safety. Doubt and insecurity are indispensable components of a complete life. Only those who can lose this life can really gain it. A ‘complete’ life does not consist of a theoretical completeness, but the fact that one accepts without reservation the particular fatal tissue in which one finds oneself embedded, and that one tries to make sense of it or to create a cosmos from the chaotic mess into which one is born. If one lives properly and completely, time and time again one will be confronted with situations of which one will say, ‘This is too much, I cannot bear it anymore.’ Then the question must be answered: ‘Can one really not bear it?’”
  15. I have no memory of that discussion. Was it me? If so, rather than Fabrizio Pregadio, could it have been a reference I made to Francois Jullien’s The Propensity of Things? That book comprehensively addresses what you are asking, whereas I have no recollection of reading anything by Pregadio that does (which is not to say he hasn’t written on the subject). There’s a good overview of Jullien’s book here: Jung’s foreword to Richard Wilhelm’s translation of the Yijing is also well worth a look, as is the whole of that book. The Yijing is the foundational text that’s fundamental to the Chinese worldview. And Jung likens the way it delivers its wisdom through the tossing of coins or the manipulation of yarrow stalks to the aspect of how reality functions he attempts to explain in his essay, Synchronicity: An Acausal connecting Principle.