Lao Tzu: Taoism and Moral Philosophy

Topics: Taoism, Morality, Tao Te Ching Pages: 6 (1207 words) Published: March 22, 2013
Believed in Tao Te Ching: The way things are
The Tao is the way, law, principle. Essence, balance of nature 1. The Tao escapes precise definition
2. Tao is intangible, it’s energy
3. Tao is powerful, humans are weak
4. Radical Naturalism Tao is a force of nature not a force of spirit * Art over science art is wiser, deeper
* Intuition over logic
* Nature over society.
Social Pessimism (Escapism)
Every society is corrupted
society restricts you
gives you an artificial life

5. Structure of the Tao
Yin: female slow dark night passive intuitive earth
Yang: male fast bright day aggressive logical sky

Yin and Yang are immortals they have a love/ have relationship each person has yin and yang 6. The wu-wei: non-action, respect to the flow of time, the art of waiting.

Opposite of confusious

Buddha is a spiritualist, a prince, gifted
1. Darhma (The teaching)
-what is the meaning of human life? Dukkha: suffering, fight, struggle, competition - Why do we inflict upon ourselves unnecessary suffering? Tanha: egotism, selfishness, Trrisha: greed, addiction to pleasure Hudonism: seeking pleasure over pain. Seeking pleasure is a very sophisticated trap any addiction Is loss of freedom. You become a slave of your pleasure - What to do? Anatta: abstinence, restrained. No to any excessive pleasure. The art of no. - What is the goal? Anicca: liberation from addiction

2. The eight fold Noble Path:
- Panna: wisdom 1. Understanding 2. Purpose
- sila : conflict 3. Speech 4. Behavior
Five moral rules: do not kill, steal, adultry, drugs, gossips Have consistancy in your morality, hypocracy corrupts you, don’t live a double life, fake identity Steps 1-5 are for normal people 6-8 are for monks or nuns

- Samadhi: Contemplation 6. Effort you control your body, physical needs, tell body when to sleep and eat 7. thoughtfulness control your emotions 8. Dhayana: deep meditation: control your mind.

3. Karma
3 types of karma
* Sabija Karma: my birth karma. Born with culture in sould, reincarnation 4. Nirvana:
Two kingdoms of reality
Samsava: kingdom of pleasure, shallow
Alaya Vijhara: The Kingdom of internal ideas, deep
Nirvana: the state of eternal spiritual bliss

He was king of sophists in athens. Sophist: pofessional teacher 1. Panton anttropas metron : man is the measure of all things 2. Subjectivism: there is no objective truth, every truth is somebody’s truth, or has its face 3. Relativism: as many people as many truths, they are all equal. Accepting diversity 4. Pragmatism: truth has to be helpful, practical, useful 5. Conventionalism: truth is what we have agreed upon (sometimes silently) Ex: cultural expectations, gender roles

6. Conformism: truth of the majority has to be respected by the minorities 7. Tolerance: The truth of the minority has to be tolerated by the majority

He reminds me of president obama because his ideas reflect democratic beliefs.


1. Choti Seanton: Know Yourself
We humans are animals +
Animals + psyche : ( soul)
Care for your soul
Soul = my self reflection
We are reflective animals
To reflect = to have knowledge
‘I know that I know nothing’
“a life unexamined is not worth living”

2. Epistemology (4 principles)
Define the basic concepts as clear as you can, avoid misunderstandings Don’t be afraid of intellectual contradictions, diversity in opinions Socratic irony, don’t lose your sense of humor, don’t take yourself so seriously Only god knows the absolute truth, our human truth is limited Protageras: absolute truth doesn’t exist Socrates: absolute truth exits but only god knows 3. Moral Philosophy

The essence of morality is to teach us arete: virtue, skills Perfect your skills, perectionism
Its better to not be committed than to have a loose commitment Skills =knowledge
Life-long education, ignorance is the mother of all evil...
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