Get this from a library! Chuang tzu: basic writings. [Zhuangzi.; Burton Watson] — Chuang Tzu was a leading thinker representing the Taoist strain in Chinese. Translated by Burton Watson . Hui Tzu10 said to Chuang Tzu, “The king of Wei gave me some seeds of a huge gourd. For both, the thing that is basic no longer exists. Ask the slave boy how it happened: well, he had a bundle of writing slips and was reading a book Ask the slave girl how it happened: well, she. Burton Watson, Associate Professor of Chinese at Columbia Uni- versity, is the from a Sung Dynasty Poet (), and Basic Writings of Mo Tzu,. Hsün Tzu.
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The basic writings of Chuang Tzu bsic been savored by Chinese readers for over two thousand years. And Burton Watson’s lucid and beautiful translation has been loved by generations of readers.
Using parable and anecdote, allegory and paradox, he set forth, in the book th The basic writings of Chuang Tzu have been savored by Chinese readers for over two thousand years. Using parable and anecdote, allegory and paradox, wrltings set forth, in the book that bears his name, the early ideas of what was to become the Taoist school. Central to these is the belief that only by understanding Tao the Way of Nature and dwelling in its wwritings can man achieve true happiness and freedom, in both life and death.
Basic Writings includes the seven “inner basci which basiic the heart of the book, three of the “outer chapters,” and one of the “miscellaneous chapters. Witty and imaginative, enriched by brilliant imagery, and making sportive use of both mythological and historical personages including even Confuciusthis timeless classic is sure to appeal to anyone interested in Chinese religion and culture.
Paperbackpages. Published May 9th by Columbia University Press first published National Book Award Finalist for Translation To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Chuang Tzuplease sign up. Lists with This Book.
Jan 15, Tim rated it it was amazing. This book contains the “inner chapters,” not the entire Chuang Tzu, but generally considered the essential and gurton corrupt chapters. It’s one of my favorite books, and after reading Watson’s translation I’m unable to read anyone else’s – it’s wonderful and there are quite a few weak versions, and weaker paraphrases.
Of the Chinese classics I’ve read this is not only the most subtle and profound, it’s sometimes absolutely hilarious. His parodies of Confucianism are a riot, his magical unreali This book contains the “inner chapters,” not the entire Chuang Tzu, but generally considered the essential and least corrupt chapters. His parodies of Confucianism are a riot, his magical unrealism is timeless, his man dreaming he’s a butterfly – or is it the other way around?
It’s a rare combination of writinvs silliness with serious reflections on human nature, existence, nature and metaphysics if that’s the right term. Aug 19, Akemi G. Well, I have read Chuang Tzu’s writings in Japanese translation that comes with the original Chinese texts and footnotes. Chinese characters represent not only the phonetics but also the meanings, and many modern Japanese translations of Chinese classics contain tzy original text to assist deeper understanding–even though I don’t speak Chinese, I know the meanings of the characters.
We’ve been reading such classics for generations; it’s part of the cultural heritage of the area that received the ancient Chinese tzzu. In fact, the Japanese might watsin Chinese classics more than the Chinese today.
Chuang Tzu: Basic Writings
I trust that this English translation writinga his essential writings. Chuang Tzu defies definition. Yes, he was a Taoist. His thinking and writing are so limitless, however. Be mesmerized in the many imaginative stories and lose yourself.
That’s what these stories are ultimately about–to lose or forget the small self. Jesus taught by fables. I find it interesting that Chuang Tzu did something similar on the other side of the continent. Feb 15, Andrew Yuen rated it really liked it. I can’t decide if I learnt something, or nothing at all. This book has a mystic’s tone, in just the same way that Wittgenstein’s TLP does. As a translation, Burton Watson makes a great companion and the foreword provides the necessary context to read the work, illuminative for those who are unfamiliar with Eastern philosophy.
His many footnotes were helpful in understanding the text as well. As a philosophy, readers from the western analytic tradition might be left uncomfortable. The work is a bit I can’t decide if I learnt something, or nothing at all. Wrifings work is a bit obtuse chuangg its aphoristic nature leaves one confused as to what one ought to do wrt the philosophy of the text, let alone if one ought to “do” anything at all! As a poetic work, it’s brilliant and provocative.
Take what you buron and learn from it, or don’t. Feb 03, Joseph rated it it was amazing Shelves: I’ve read this a number of times and I’ve read other translations He also tuz useful footnotes which are located on the same cuhang as the text Here’s a famous sample using the famous cleaver illustration: I stand there holding the knife and look all around me, watsoon satisfied and reluctant to move on, and then I wipe off the knife and put it away.
Modern society could sure use a dose of wuwei. Okay, looking at Watson’s translation he uses words which are deceptively simple yet surgically precise. That is why, Watson’s translation remains for me the best. Sep 27, Jess rated it really liked it Shelves: I almost felt like putting this on the “fantasy” shelf, so much of it was so purely fanciful.
Chuang-tzu is, in the words of my prof, “a wild literary ride. It can be wtason little hard to focus your attention at times when the thing is jumping all over the plac I almost felt like putting this on the “fantasy” shelf, so much of it was so purely fanciful.
Basic writings / Chuang Tzu ; translated by Burton Watson – Details – Trove
It can be a little wriyings to focus your attention at times when the thing is jumping all over the place. But it’s still really a nice philosophical treat of a book. Those interested in Taoism.
I found this to be a nice discussion of Taoism, worlds easier to extract meaning from than the Tao Te Ching, though not quite as clear as the Tao of Pooh. It has all the trappings of ancient philosophy: The parables are somewhat repetitious, both in tone and in ideas, an I found this to be a nice discussion burgon Taoism, worlds easier to extract meaning from than the Tao Te Ching, though not quite as clear as the Tao of Pooh.
The parables are somewhat repetitious, both in tone and in budton, and sometimes parables are explicitly repeated in slightly altered form. They express three central ideas: That Virtue happiness, lack of suffering, contentment is to be found in a middle way, which makes no pretense to glory, riches, or power, nor to wafson or isolation.
It advocates acceptance of tau lot in life as the truest road to happiness. That fate is the ultimate determinant of the life you live. You are given a body, a society, a mind, etc, which all conspire to make you who you are and make you do what you do. That all divisions of the butron and experience into categories are fallacious and indeed the source of all discontent. This means that language and thought themselves are facetious and don’t necessarily have anything to do with the objective universe, and that the only way to truly understand is to abandon all attempts to understand.
These ideas are pretty damned nice for a philosopher who thought such a long time basif. They’re not perfect, of course, but I’d say it is probably worth reading. Definitely read the Tao of Pooh over Zhuangzi, I’d say, but maybe complement them with each other. This translation has a nice straightforward character, in that the translator provides many footnotes that are up front about the fact that in many places he didn’t really know what Zhuangzi was trying to say.
This makes it easier to find the spots that aren’t worth trying to parse, since he points them out as dubiously translated and maintained from the original. Where can I chuaang a man who has forgotten words so I can have a word with him? Feb 10, William Cheek rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Them that likes to think a bit. It doesn’t matter what your worldview is – Chuang Tzu is good food for the mind.
The basic allure is in the concept of casting chuuang Our deepest thoughts and considerations are almost always blocked writinngs certain premises that bassic are unable to see through.
Chuang Tzu escapes these barriers, in a thrilling and powerful way. At its basic level, The Way according to Chuang Tzu is not anchored in anything. The Way is a It doesn’t matter what your worldview is – Chuang Tzu is good food for the mind. The Way is a philosophy that goes beyond all of this, rooted in nothing but the detached mind. There is no seeking, only understanding. There is no high, no low, only acceptance.
It is a worldview as as expansive and daring as any other. That doesn’t mean I’ll be following this Way anytime soon – as thrilling as it is to mull over, its implications paint a picture of bruton bleak and colorless detachment. Human suffering will not bring down the true Chuang Tzu sage, but neither will human celebration lift him up.
Still, though, Chuang Tzu’s writing will tune your mind, sift your preconceptions, ask you to release – just for a bit – whatever it is you hold as true and to simply THINK.
And that is always a good thing. LeGuin’s “Lathe of Heaven” has a few quotes by Chuang Tzu inside; namely the one about a man dreaming he’s a butterfly, who when waking questions if he’s now a butterfly dreaming he’s a man.