Tang Dynasty Religions Ch-ch-ch-changesa slightly irreverent look at what happens in China
Buddhism• Mahayana Strand enters China• Monasteries form and are popular--social benefits for local people• but calls for celibacy and cutting family ties• meets Daoist thought and...
Chan Buddhismtwo ways to do it, either directed study of koans or silent illumination
KoanWhat does your face look like before you are born if no one can see it? What is the sound of one hand clapping?Where is the space between a sound ending and a new one beginning?
Modern KoanIf a tree falls in the woods and there is no person there to hear it, does it make a sound? If you are in a car, traveling at the speed of light, and you turn on your headlights, does anything happen?
Theory of the double TruthTruth is present; existence and non-existence arepresent. So where does truth reside? Then same question for enlightenment
A good deed entails no retributionaction without effort (natural and spontaneous actions) meets Karma
Enlightenment comes from deliberate andpurposeful effort and natural living wait, but you just said... Yep. Paradox
Enlightenment is sudden though you should spend time in non-activecontemplation, Enlightenment is a sudden switch
Words are useful but limitedYou can’t really describe enlightenment. Words are but an approximation of the idea.
There is no other reality than this worldEnlightened people see the hidden “buddha nature” of the world. Ordinary folks just see physical objects.
Confucianism doesn’t like this stuff much But is influenced by it...
Neo-Confucianism!c’mon people, they aren’t that creative a group of philosophers...
Argues for moral standards, familypersonal behavior and social harmony
Argues also about the nature of realityTwo elements: Li (the essence or Form) and Qi: the material version of the item. Paging Dr. Plato...
Admits there is a soulbut what is it? is it metaphysical? does it connect us to a cosmic family structure?
Daoism gets bitterWhy is Buddhism so popular? Why aren’t we popular like Buddhism? How can we be more popular?
Tries first for a rip-offDharma=Dao, Nirvana=wuwei...we can do monasteries too...we can be celibate too...
Doesn’t work, sobecomes more mystical We can be immortal if we just eat the right combination of herbs andspices...mmm...mushrooms....dude.....the Way is all around us, man....