Author: changabula

Chinese Philosophy, Thoughts and Wisdom [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2007-4-24 15:56:57 |Display all floors
Chinese Proverbs


A little impatience will spoil great plans.


Even a hare will bite when it is cornered.


A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.


If you bow at all, bow low.


A smile will gain you ten more years of life.


A bird does not sing because it has an answer.
It sings because it has a song.


Behave toward everyone as if receiving a guest.


A fall into a ditch makes you wiser.


Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without one.


He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever.


An inch of time is an inch of gold but you can't buy that inch of time with an inch of gold.


A closed mind is like a closed book; just a block of wood


Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.


A book holds a house of gold.


Talk does not cook rice.


Experience is a comb which nature gives us when we are bald.


Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still.


To know the road ahead, ask those coming back.


A needle is not sharp at both ends.


Distant water won't help to put out a fire close at hand.


Small men think they are small; great men never know they are great.


Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.


Want a thing long enough and you don't.


Clear conscience never fears midnight knocking.


Teachers open the door.
You enter by yourself.


I was angered, for I had no shoes.
Then I met a man who had no feet.


Men trip not on mountains they trip on molehills.


Do not want others to know what you have done?


Better not have done it anyways.


A man without a smiling face must not open shop.


It is not the knowing that is difficult, but the doing.


Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day.
Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.


Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.


A bird can roost but on one branch, a mouse can drink not more than its fill from a river.


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Post time 2007-4-25 20:23:49 |Display all floors
CHINESE IDEAS IN THE WEST

In addition to material inventions that came to the West from China, Chinese "ideas" also influenced political and social development in the West. The article Chinese Ideas in the West discusses the Chinese origins of and influence on: the civil service (see note below), alchemy and chemistry, agricultural methods, thought in the Age of the Enlightenment, Western literature, and Western political and economic theories.

  1. http://afe.easia.columbia.edu/chinawh/web/s10/ideas.pdf
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[ Last edited by changabula at 2007-4-25 08:27 PM ]
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Post time 2007-4-25 23:36:42 |Display all floors
Social Welfare


Looking at China, we expect to see certain kinds of economic changes, which in certain senses resemble those that took place in Europe and America, but in other ways were distinctly Chinese. We think of social welfare as a national problem, as a modern national problem, which emerged in the nineteenth century, but it's not until the second half of the nineteenth century that we start to see European states caring about education.

Caring about the welfare of people in cities beyond the capital itself is really a late-nineteenth- and twentieth-century development. However, in China, it's quite clear that governments have cared about the subsistence conditions—the food supply conditions of its people—for many, many centuries. And they have done so not merely on a local level, but spanning the entire country, which again, in the Chinese case, because it was an empire, is the equivalent of many European countries put together.

What do we do, then, in terms of understanding the significance of those developments? We tend to discount their importance because they don't fit our expectations of what governments do until a later point in European history; therefore, we can't take seriously that these developments in China take place before comparable developments take place in Europe. And that, again, makes it difficult for us to see the importance of these in a Chinese setting because we don't have any comparable European examples until a later point in time.

  1. http://afe.easia.columbia.edu/chinawh/web/s2/s2_3.html
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Post time 2007-4-25 23:37:36 |Display all floors
Social Welfare


  1. http://afe.easia.columbia.edu/chinawh/web/s2/s2_3.html
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Transporting rice to famine area in China, c. 1906.
(Courtesy Jean Elliott Johnson)

[ Last edited by changabula at 2007-4-25 11:38 PM ]
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Post time 2007-5-1 05:22:03 |Display all floors
Taoism


Taoism originated in China. Taoism's central book, the Tao Te Ching, appeared in approximately 600 BCE. The beliefs themselves are much more ancient, incorporating elements of mysticism dating back to prehistoric times. The Dao de jing was written by Lao Zi (Wade-Giles, Lao tse), a minor Chinese court official who became tired of the petty intrigues of court life, and set off to live as a hermit in the desert. Taoism teaches "action through inaction" (wu wei), that one should effect changes subtly and without disrupting the natural flow of the universe, rather than by attempting to force change. Another central idea is the dualism of the universe, the belief that all aspects of everything are diametrically opposed into divisions of light and dark, male and female, yin and yang, etc. One half is no better than the other, and indeed, neither can exist without the other, since each contains a small amount of the other. Ultimately, both are the same thing, tao, which means the way ahead.

Some time after the publication of the Dao de jing and another work by Zhuang zi (Wade-Giles, Chuang tse), Taoism developed its religious aspect, especially among the Chinese peasantry. Lao Zi and other famous personas were elevated to deity status among followers, and complex religious rituals involving alchemy, magic spells and symbology began to be practiced.

  1. http://www.dimsum.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1053
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Post time 2007-5-1 05:23:50 |Display all floors
Confucianism


Confucianism is the traditional foil to Taoism, developed by Confucius in the 6th through 5th centuries BCE, shortly after the Dao de jing was written. Whereas Taoism takes a holistic and empirical approach to the universe, Confucianism attempts to create a complex interdependent and well-defined system of ethics and morals. Confucianism emphasizes formal rituals in every aspect of life, from quasi-religious ceremonies to strict politeness and deference to one's elders, specifically to one's parents and to the state in the form of the Emperor.

  1. http://www.dimsum.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1053
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Post time 2007-5-1 05:24:55 |Display all floors
Legalism

Legalism advocated a strict interpretation of the law in every respect. Morality was not important; adherence to the letter of the law was paramount. Officials who exceeded expectations were as liable for punishment as were those who underperformed their duties, since both were not adhering exactly to their duties. Legalism was the principal philosophic basis of the Qin Dynasty in China. Confucian scholars were persecuted under Legalist rule.

  1. http://www.dimsum.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1053
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