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Posted (edited)

I have heard of Jason Gregory before but I never watched a video. Someone put this in front of me and found it to be alright. What do you think?

 

 

Questions about morality often haunt westerners, and in all honesty, when surrounded by folk back here and having to accept or tolerate or whatever the word is, everyone's "holier than thou" attitudes, it is useful to play along and be agreeable to an extent.

 

Well, if one wants to coninue to humour their friends or keep a good relationship in the work place...

 

One of my teachers told me that with a calm mind, I will know myself what the right thing to do in any situation is.

 

How do you handle questions on morality? Do you play along with the debate? Humour people? Avoid it altogether?

 

Edit: Skip the beginning and switch off around half way as he waffles.

Edited by Rara

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Some thoughts:

 

In the beginning, he sounds more like he is talking about Buddhism than Taoism.

 

Later on, when saying Taoists believe we should let things be and not interfere with nature, but Dan's desire to save the fly from the spider's web is simply him following his own nature belies the notion he believes it's Dan's nature. Dan is struggling with what to do--that does not appear to be his nature, he is grappling with what he should do or what he will do. 

 

As he goes into Jainism, saving the rat is probably a bad example to use to illustrate the difference between Jainism and Taoism because it becomes a grey versus gray argument as it's not that simple to discuss how to alleviate suffering--a quick death to alleviate suffering or if beheading it is adding suffering. 

 

In terms of morality, I tend to go by what is right rather than what is popular. I listen, but I also don't let people convert me to their dogma, such as fundamentalist vegans or social justice warriors. If anything, they lose credibility when they take an Inquisition-style approach guilt-tripping people rather than recognizing complexities.

 

So I listen. I consider. I don't necessarily agree. The coronavirus thread I just posted in moments ago actually just had this play out and I and another member share a very common value that we'd rather be seen as assholes rather than be seen as polite or agreeable when it comes to doing what is right. 

 

My own training also makes me act on autopilot as well--I've jumped in when I've seen pickpockets, scammers, and bullies without thinking--it just happens without me considering anything. 

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Rara said:

How do you handle questions on morality? Do you play along with the debate? Humour people? Avoid it altogether?

 

My answer:.  The Taoist way is to do what will yield the best results for the most beings, based on internally validated truths and self honesty.  Since both internally validating truth, and self honesty, are so rare, we can see that Taoism is only for a few.  The rest need rules.

 

... and yet, it is advisable to follow the laws of the land ... depending on police presence, of course.

 

I didn't watch the video.

 

Edited by Starjumper
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Posted (edited)

The way the video described that Taoism is different from Jainism. However, if one study the Tao Te Ching carefully enough, then one will realize that Taoism is the same as Jainism as in this aspect.
 

The way Lao Tze emphasize Wu Wei is take no action to harm nature. In other words, he does not give too much credit to something that was good to nature. If the rat could be saved, a Taoist would have had saved. Otherwise, just leave it alone. Chapter Five may justify that. 
 

Chapter 5
1.天地不仁,
2.以萬物為芻狗。
3.聖人不仁,
4.以百姓為芻狗。
5.天地之間,
6.其猶橐籥乎﹖
7.虛而不屈,
8.動而愈出。
9.多言數窮,
10.不如守中。

Chapter 5
01. Heaven and Earth have no mercy,
02. Treating all things as straw dogs.
03. Sages have no mercy,
04. Treating people as straw dogs.

05. In-between-Heaven-and-Earth
06. Is like a wind box,
07. Vacuous but inexhaustible,
08. Dynamic but invigorating.
09. Excessive words accelerate failure.
10. Prefer to stay being neutral.

 

Edited by ReturnDragon
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4 hours ago, Starjumper said:

 

My answer:.  The Taoist way is to do what will yield the best results for the most beings, based on internally validated truths and self honesty.  Since both internally validating truth, and self honesty, are so rare, we can see that Taoism is only for a few.  The rest need rules.

 

... and yet, it is advisable to follow the laws of the land ... depending on police presence, of course.

 

I didn't watch the video.

 

 

F*** me running. I literally just posted this in the other thread that @dmattwads started!

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2 hours ago, ReturnDragon said:

The way the video described that Taoism is different from Jainism. However, if one study the Tao Te Ching carefully enough, then one will realize that Taoism is the same as Jainism as in this aspect.
 

The way Lao Tze emphasize Wu Wei is take no action to harm nature. In other words, he does not give too much credit to something that was good to nature. If the rat could be saved, a Taoist would have had saved. Otherwise, just leave it alone. Chapter Five may justify that. 
 

Chapter 5
1.天地不仁,
2.以萬物為芻狗。
3.聖人不仁,
4.以百姓為芻狗。
5.天地之間,
6.其猶橐籥乎﹖
7.虛而不屈,
8.動而愈出。
9.多言數窮,
10.不如守中。

Chapter 5
01. Heaven and Earth have no mercy,
02. Treating all things as straw dogs.
03. Sages have no mercy,
04. Treating people as straw dogs.

05. In-between-Heaven-and-Earth
06. Is like a wind box,
07. Vacuous but inexhaustible,
08. Dynamic but invigorating.
09. Excessive words accelerate failure.
10. Prefer to stay being neutral.

 

 

I don't know anything about Jainism, so I cannot really compare in that respect. Also, I'm not sure the DDJ chapter really backs this up. Which part are you highlighting? 1-4 or 8? Don't make me reach for my copy :P

 

But I agree with how there are always similarities, but different approaches. One religion or philosophy might say "do not harm", but this isn't practical when we have no choice. Laozi's philosophy is to not interfere with the natural order, where harm is a byproduct of living. No snatching that spider's meal! That was not our business!

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21 minutes ago, Rara said:

F*** me running. I literally just posted this in the other thread that @dmattwads started!

 

:)  Yes, I saw that.  Great minds think know alike.

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Just now, Rara said:

 

I've seen the thread, and I know RD/CD well enough to debate if need be :) 

 

Yeah, just a necessary repost for others who don't see it, especially those seeing this in web searches. 

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31 minutes ago, Rara said:

 

F*** me running. I literally just posted this in the other thread that @dmattwads started!

 

Yeah you did 😉

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1 minute ago, Earl Grey said:

 

Yeah, just a necessary repost for others who don't see it, especially those seeing this in web searches. 

 

Ah yeah, the open moderation thing. Carry on!

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1 minute ago, dmattwads said:

 

Yeah you did 😉

 

The synchronicity with me on here sometimes blows my mind. It's not usually with @Starjumper though, that was new.

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4 hours ago, Starjumper said:

 Since both internally validating truth, and self honesty, are so rare, we can see that Taoism is only for a few.  The rest need rules.

 

 

I suppose this is why the predominant philosophy was Confucianism.

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17 minutes ago, dmattwads said:

I suppose this is why the predominant philosophy was Confucianism.

 

Yes, when the Way is lost then people need rules, and Confused Tzu had plenty of those.  Confused Tzu was a brilliant philosopher, but he couldn't see the Way with his heart, only with his head.

 

I think of Confucianism as the fundamentalist aspect of Taoism.  Every system of religion or spiritual philosophy has it's mystics at one end, and it's fundamentalists at the other end.

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34 minutes ago, Rara said:

I don't know anything about Jainism, so I cannot really compare in that respect. Also, I'm not sure the DDJ chapter really backs this up. Which part are you highlighting? 1-4 or 8?


I don't know anything about Jainism neither. I have only go by what the video said.


It is lines 1 to 4.
01. Heaven and Earth have no mercy,
02. Treating all things as straw dogs.
03. Sages have no mercy,
04. Treating people as straw dogs.

"No mercy" are the keywords. This is pure philosophical. When nature strikes like volcano eruption, flood or landslide, it will destroy anything in its path with no mercy. It will not avoid killing a good person in its way nor selectively who is not to be killed.

On a human level. Whomever breaks a law will be punished with no mercy. This is what Chapter 5 is all about.

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, ReturnDragon said:


03. Sages have no mercy,
04. Treating people as straw dogs.

"No mercy" are the keywords.

On a human level. Whomever breaks a law will be punished with no mercy. 

 

Yes, but breaking the law has to do with government punishment with the master carpenter, not the sage.

 

When referring to the sage, it means they have no mercy with people because they are like the Tao and have no karma.  They act spontaneously, and can kill without remorse.

 

Edited by Starjumper

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33 minutes ago, Starjumper said:

 

Yes, when the Way is lost then people need rules, and Confused Tzu had plenty of those.  Confused Tzu was a brilliant philosopher, but he couldn't see the Way with his heart, only with his head.

 

I think of Confucianism as the fundamentalist aspect of Taoism.  Every system of religion or spiritual philosophy has it's mystics at one end, and it's fundamentalists at the other end.

 

Do you agree or disagree that Daoism at leans more so much one way, that Confuianism is necessary to balance the state?

 

Again, speaking about governance. Or am I now thinking too modern? As before it was said that we had an age where we did live in accordance to Dao, naturally...before the Way was lost, perhaps?

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Starjumper said:

Yes, but breaking the law has to do with government punishment with the master carpenter, not the sage.


The sage, in the Tao Te Ching, was implied to any higher authority. Lao Tse cannot spell it out in the open to avoid being arrested.
 

Edited by ReturnDragon

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36 minutes ago, ReturnDragon said:


I don't know anything about Jainism neither. I have only go by what the video said.


It is lines 1 to 4.
01. Heaven and Earth have no mercy,
02. Treating all things as straw dogs.
03. Sages have no mercy,
04. Treating people as straw dogs.

"No mercy" are the keywords. This is pure philosophical. When nature strikes like volcano eruption, flood or landslide, it will destroy anything in its path with no mercy. It will not avoid killing a good person in its way nor selectively who is not to be killed.

On a human level. Whomever breaks a law will be punished with no mercy. This is what Chapter 5 is all about.

 

Ok, that's clearer. It was the first paragraph in your first response that threw me, because you said Daoism and Jainism are actually similar.

 

I'm just assuming that Jainism would have a more moral/thoughtful approach, as per the video. So I was questioning, "am I reading 1-4 right? I swear it says "No Mercy""

 

But yes, I understand.

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1 minute ago, Rara said:

Do you agree or disagree that Daoism leans more so much one way, that Confuianism is necessary to balance the state?

 

Yes, I would say it is a needed sort of balance, Taoism (yin) would be for more mature self responsible people with wisdom, while confucianism (yang) is for more immature, more irresponsible, people who lack wisdom.  The emperors adopted Confucianism though, and so it became the law.

 

1 minute ago, Rara said:

Again, speaking about governance. Or am I now thinking too modern? As before it was said that we had an age where we did live in accordance to Dao, naturally...before the Way was lost, perhaps?

 

I would say that long lost age was the stone age, or even before that.

 

Time to go to some chi kung now, later ...

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2 minutes ago, Starjumper said:

The emperors adopted Confucianism though, and so it became the law.


The Confucianism was too idealistic and impractical. Thus no emperor had ever adopted his philosophy. Only the scholars and people with morality had accepted him as a great philosophy. However, Lao Tze's philosophy was adopted by one of the emperors in the Han Dynasty to rule the people for a while.

 

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15 minutes ago, ReturnDragon said:


The Confucianism was too idealistic and impractical. Thus no emperor had ever adopted his philosophy. Only the scholars and people with morality had accepted him as a great philosophy. However, Lao Tze's philosophy was adopted by one of the emperors in the Han Dynasty to rule the people for a while.

 

 

Somehow, we get the feeling you don't know Chinese history or Confucianism at all, or Neo Confucianism for that matter. 

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7 minutes ago, ReturnDragon said:


The Confucianism was too idealistic and impractical. Thus no emperor had ever adopted his philosophy. Only the scholars and people with morality had accepted him as a great philosophy. However, Lao Tze's philosophy was adopted by one of the emperors in the Han Dynasty to rule the people for a while.

 

 

I have a hazy memory for the details, but I want to say that yes, emperors generally didn't care for any of the philosophies as they were busy going about thier business. Powerhouse work, no time to procrastinate. You may need to correct me or elaborate.

 

But despite this, nowadays, Confucianism is an important philosophy among the people in China, as well as Daoism (and Buddhism, just mentioning...not really relevant here) I believe this is what he means...it is what I was getting at anyway.

 

What is interesting is how Daoism sits in the rest of the world. Here in the west, we wouldn't say it's balanced with Confusianism because that isn't the case here. Those following this path often aren't born into the ideology, but moreso see it one day when finding their way out of "the norm".

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Posted (edited)
On 4/6/2020 at 12:50 PM, Rara said:

How do you handle questions on morality? Do you play along with the debate? Humour people? Avoid it altogether?

 

Dao is the universal function and sentient beings have relationships that engender de.

 

Morality is conventional, but we must look beyond it if we want to get to know ourselves. The real exercise of discerning wisdom is to find the optimally altruistic solution in any situation: good is context depended and mostly unique to any instance, so one must remain sharp and wise.

 

Ethics is neither rejected nor affirmed, but it must come spontaneously (not impulsively!) and without fear or care for consequences. Otherwise it's hypocrisy and degrees of selfishness manifesting.

 

14 hours ago, Starjumper said:

Yes, when the Way is lost then people need rules, and Confused Tzu had plenty of those.  Confused Tzu was a brilliant philosopher, but he couldn't see the Way with his heart, only with his head.

 

I think of Confucianism as the fundamentalist aspect of Taoism.  Every system of religion or spiritual philosophy has it's mystics at one end, and it's fundamentalists at the other end.

 

You have a very shallow understanding of Confucianism. Like all great traditions, Confucius's message was practical, not intellectual. Taking it as a hobby of the literati and as a mere indoctrination tool is roughly the same case as if you said the Christ or the Buddha only taught philosophical religion and nothing else.

 

I would recommend you and everyone else to read Liu Yousheng's Let the Radiant Yang Shine Forth to get a real perspective just how effective and practical Confucian healing can be.

Edited by virtue
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