Interactive Guide to Eastern Philosophy
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Eastern philosophy is a whole different kettle of fish to Western philosophy. In the West, we tend to think of philosophy solely in terms of knowledge gained from books or other writings, but in the East, everything from the correct way of drinking tea, to the appreciation of the shape and form of rocks is part of the school of thought. As you will see in this interactive guide, we have much to learn from the lessons over the millennia in Asia. I hope you enjoy these videos as much as I did!
Wu Wei is a key concept within Daoism – and refers to a serene acceptance of events. It’s a wisdom we’re very uninclined to remember in our own times.
Chinese culture shows us a remarkable interest in rocks, as objects of beauty and philosophical wisdom.
‘Kintsugi’ is the remarkable Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with elegance and grace – a tradition with a lot to teach us more generally about how to handle the broken bits of ourselves.
Matsuo Basho was one of the most famous Zen poets of Japan, who alerts us to the neglected beauty and interest of everyday life, and thereby reconciles us with our own circumstances.
Sen no Rikyū was a Japanese philosopher who understood the role of a cup of tea in a wise and calm life.
Lao Tzu, the founder of Taoism.
The Buddha’s philosophy teaches us that our desires are at the root of our restlessness – and that calm can be achieved through willpower and spiritual exercise.
This great Chinese philosopher believed in everything we ignore nowadays: tradition, institution, obedience and order. That’s why he matters.
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