Only by inhabiting Dao (the Way of Nature) and dwelling in its unity can humankind achieve true happiness and freedom, in both life and death. This is Daoist philosophy’s central tenet, espoused by the person—or group of people—known as Zhuangzi (369?-286? B.C.E.) in a text by the same name. To be free, individuals must discard rigid distinctions between good and bad, right and wrong, and follow a course of action not motivated by gain or striving. When one ceases to judge events as good or bad, man-made suffering disappears and natural suffering is embraced as part of life. Zhuangzi elucidates this mystical philosophy through humor, parable, and anecdote, deploying non sequitur and even nonsense to illuminate a truth beyond the boundaries of ordinary logic. Boldly imaginative and inventively worded, the Zhuangzi floats free of its historical period and society, addressing the spiritual nourishment of all people across time. One of the most justly celebrated texts of the Chinese tradition, the Zhuangzi is read by thousands of English-language scholars each year, yet only in the Wade-Giles romanization. Burton Watson’s pinyin romanization brings the text in line with how Chinese scholars, and an increasing number of other scholars, read it.
Classic writings from the great Zen master in exquisite versions by Thomas Merton, in a new edition with a preface by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Working from existing translations, Thomas Merton composed a series of his own versions of the classic sayings of Chuang Tzu, the most spiritual of Chinese philosophers. Chuang Tzu, who wrote in the fourth and third centuries B.C., is the chief authentic historical spokesperson for Taoism and its founder Lao Tzu (a legendary character known largely through Chuang Tzu’s writings). Indeed it was because of Chuang Tzu and the other Taoist sages that Indian Buddhism was transformed, in China, into the unique vehicle we now call by its Japanese name—Zen. The Chinese sage abounds in wit and paradox and shattering insights into the true ground of being. Thomas Merton, no stranger to Asian thought, brings a vivid, modern idiom to the timeless wisdom of Tao.
The Book of Chuang Tzu draws together the stories, tales, jokes and anecdotes that have gathered around the figure of Chuang Tzu. One of the great founders of Taoism, Chaung Tzu lived in the fourth century BC and is among the most enjoyable and intriguing personalities in the whole of Chinese philosophy.
Author: Chuang Tzu, Fung Yu-lan
This book reprints an ancient Chinese work from the late Warring States period (3rd century BC) that contains stories and anecdotes exemplifying the carefree nature of the ideal Taoist sage. Chuang Tzu’s philosophy represents the main current of Taoist teachings, and his text is widely regarded as both deeply insightful and a great achievement in the Chinese poetical essay form. The version presented was translated by Feng Yu-lan, the famous Chinese philosopher, who puts more emphasis on Chuang Tzu’s philosophy than do previous attempts. William James once said that every great philosopher has a personal vision. When one has grasped that vision, the whole system can be easily understood. And Crocé once said that the greater a philosophical system is, the simpler the central idea. Although the present translation is limited to the first seven chapters of Chuang Tzu’s writings, it accurately conveys his main vision and ideas.
Wandering on the Way
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press
A contemporary translation remaining faithful to the original collection of tales, poems and parables of Taoist philosophy. The collection covers a wide range of issues, from ambition to politics, and is accompanied by an introduction on the author and his place in Chinese thought and history.
Author: Livia Kohn
Publisher: SkyLight Paths Publishing
A fresh, modern translation of key selections from this timeless text opens up classic Taoist beliefs and practices with insightful commentary that highlights how you can live a more balanced, authentic and joyful life by following Taoist principles.
The Inner Chapters
Publisher: Hackett Publishing
The Inner Chapters are the oldest pieces of the larger collection of writings by several fourth, third, and second century B.C. authors that constitute the classic of Taoism, the Chuang-Tzu (or Zhuangzi). It is this core of ancient writings that is ascribed to Chuang-Tzu himself.
Author: Zhuangzi, Burton Watson
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Chuang Tzu (369?-286? BC) was a leading Taoist philosopher. Using parable and anecdote, allegory and paradox, he set forth in this book the early ideas of what was to become the Taoist school. This collection includes the seven "inner chapters," three of the "outer chapters," and one of the "miscellaneous chapters."
I and Tao
Author: Jonathan R. Herman
Publisher: SUNY Press
Presents a new view of the Taoist classic, The Chuang Tzu, through the lens of Buber’s translation and his philosophy developed in I and Thou and later works.
The Essential Chuang Tzu
Author: Sam Hamill
Publisher: Shambhala Publications
The Chuang Tzu has been translated into English numerous times, but never with the freshness, accessibility, and accuracy of this remarkable rendering. Here the immediacy of Chuang Tzu's language is restored in a idiom that is both completely fresh and true to the original text. This unique collaboration between one of America's premier poet-translators and a leading Chinese scholar presents the so-called "Inner Chapters" of the text, along with important selections from other chapters thought to have been written by Chuang Tzu's disciples.
Generally regarded as one of the foremost works of philosophy in any language, this important book by a brilliant Chinese philosopher and one of Taoism's founding fathers has exerted a profound influence on Chinese thought and led to the development of Zen Buddhism. This new edition contains a number of the most relevant and accessible selections from that great classic.
Author: David Hinton
Revered for millennia in the Chinese spiritual tradition, Chuang Tzu stands alongside the Tao Te Ching as a founding classic of Taoism. The Inner Chapters are the only sustained section of this text widely believed to be the work of Chuang Tzu himself, dating to the fourth century B.C.E. Witty and engaging, spiced with the lyricism of poetry, Chuang Tzu's Taoist insights are timely and eternal, profoundly concerned with spiritual ecology. Indeed, the Tao of Chuang Tzu was a wholesale rejection of a human-centered approach. Zen traces its sources back to these Taoist roots — roots at least as deep as those provided by Buddhism. But this is an ancient text that yields a surprisingly modern effect. In bold and startling prose, David Hinton's translation captures the "zany texture and philosophical abandon" of the original. The Inner Chapters' fantastical passages — in which even birds and trees teach us what they know — offer up a wild menagerie of characters, freewheeling play with language, and surreal humor. And interwoven with Chuang Tzu's sharp instruction on the Tao are short-short stories that are often rough and ribald, rich with satire and paradox. On their deepest level, the Inner Chapters are a meditation on the mysteries of knowledge itself. "Chuang Tzu's propositions," the translator's introduction reminds us, "seem to be in constant transformation, for he deploys words and concepts only to free us of words and concepts." Hinton's vital new translation makes this ancient text from the golden age of Chinese philosophy come alive for contemporary readers.
The Tao of Nature
Author: Chuang Tzu
Publisher: Penguin Classics
Chuang Tzu examines the nature of existence in these dialogues and essays, from the battle to grasp the purpose of life to the search for knowledge. A collection of some of the most absorbing and charming philosophy ever written, THE TAO OF NATURE is also about perfection, perception, the value of skills and the truth revealed by complete understanding. GREAT IDEAS. Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves - and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives - and destroyed them. Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers, pioneers, radicals and visionaries whose ideas shook civilization and helped make us who we are.
The Tao of Happiness
Author: Derek Lin
If you have not encountered Chuang Tzu before, prepare yourself for a treat. He was the sage who stood apart from all others in Chinese history. He was a unique presence, a great mind like no one before or since. Chuang Tzu quickly distinguished himself and became well known for his deep understanding and sense of humor. His mastery was such that he could explain the Tao with simple stories, and his humor was such that he could see the joy in ordinary things. He taught his students about “carefree wandering”—the path of moving through life with a free and happy heart, regardless of how turbulent the journey might be. It is time for modern readers to join in on the fun. Chuang Tzu’s wisdom is not just for Eastern culture, but for all of humanity. We may not have the instability or the clash of massive armies indicative of Chuang Tzu’s time, but we have a lot of stress and tension in our modern world. Many of us find ourselves fighting little battles on the personal front just to get through the day. We can benefit greatly from Chuang Tzu’s teachings. These parables are presented throughout this book and juxtaposed with the charming and intelligent prose of modern-day Taoist teacher and author Derek Lin. Together, Chuang Tzu and Lin will present you with simple lessons that will have a lasting impact on your life. From the Trade Paperback edition.