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Comparative Religion

Liberation as Affirmation: The Religiosity of Zhuangzi and by Ge Ling Shang

By Ge Ling Shang

During this e-book, writer Ge Ling Shang offers a scientific comparability of unique texts through Zhuangzi (fourth century BCE) and Nietzsche (1846–1900), lower than the rubric of religiosity, to problem those that have almost always relegated either thinkers to relativism, nihilism, escapism, pessimism, or anti-religion. Shang heavily examines Zhuangzi’s and Nietzsche’s respective evaluations of metaphysics, morals, language, wisdom, and humanity often and proposes a belief of the philosophical outlooks of Zhuangzi and Nietzsche as complementary. within the inventive and important spirit of Nietzsche, as within the tranquil and inward spirit of Zhuangzi, Shang argues strangely comparable imaginative and prescient and aspiration towards human liberation and freedom exists—one during which non secular transformation is feasible by means of religiously declaring existence during this global as sacred and divine.

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Extra info for Liberation as Affirmation: The Religiosity of Zhuangzi and Nietzsche (SUNY Series in Chinese Philosophy and Culture)

Sample text

Zhuangzi provided an alternative way of overcoming and transcending all metaphysical positions. (2) Wuwu is an ever open process of nature as ziran, a process with no beginning or end, no limit or boundary, no concept of right and wrong, No-no-thing whatsoever, except its original force or dynamic of changing and becoming. (3) Wuwu has completely overcome the duality between thing and No-thing, or Being and Non-being, it is both you and wu, or neither you nor wu, it is a real affirmation of this existing world through negation of negation.

As summarized in the Book of Zhuangzi (chapters 27 and 33), there are three types of discourse that characterize Zhuangzi’s writing: allegory (yuyan, 寓言), double words (chongyan, 重言), and goblet words (zhiyan, 卮言). Yuyan has been translated as “metaphorical language” by Creel, “imputed language” by Watson, and “metaphor” by Mair. They all sensed the multiple meaning of yuyan in the Book of Zhuangzi, so they used different English words to translate it. These translations are not wrong, but neither are they wholly accurate.

This sort of mind or cheng-xin, he tells us, is the main source of our suffering and agony, because it grounds itself upon nothingness. To deconstruct metaphysical Dao is to get ready to demolish all that is fixed, artificial, and dogmatic and let oneself go with the spontaneous rhythm of self-so (ziran) and self-transformation (zihua). Wuwu or no-nothing therefore is not a nihilistic notion of the world; on the contrary, it is for Zhuangzi indeed a very affirmative state of mind by wuing or no-ing those hypostatized conceptions for the sake of returning to the actual flow of life or becoming one with nature.

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