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Culture Corner of Chinese:老子与道德经

Posted by Clarissa on 28. Apr 2010

 

1167832010-03-15 18:12:29.0 Culture Corner of Chinese:老子与道德经 老子,道德经,教学2280文化课堂/enpproperty-->

CIO Culture Radio Text Reading Exercise Vocabulary Study

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MONICA: Hey, Leo, you’ve been sitting on that chair since 7 in the morning, what are you thinking?

LEO: I’m thinking about nothing. Or at least I’m trying to think about nothing.

MONICA: Why would you do that?

LEO: Well, I’m demonstrating Non-doing, Wuwei, you know, the ultimate way of solving all the problems in our lives.

MONICA: Wuwei? In Laozi’s famous work Daodejing?

LEO: Yes. It is a very deep concept. I don’t think you’ll be able to understand. After reading Laozi’s Daodejing, I feel enlightened.

MONICA: How so?

LEO: Well, honestly speaking, I’ve always been troubled by the imperfections in my life. I mean, I know I am a famous CEO in Beijing, in most people’s eyes, I should be very happy already, but… I always suspect that my employees are taking advantage of the company benefits. Like…ordering Pizza through the private line, or talking to their mistresses through MSN. I mean, really, the only hope of my life is my son. And yet, let me tell you, he has never received a mark higher than 50 at school.

MONICA: Wow, it does sound like a lot of trouble that you’re dealing with.

LEO: Oh no, I’m not dealing with them anymore. Not after reading about Wuwei, the Non-doing. You know? So WHAT my employees slack off during work? Don’t you think it’s an indication of how strong my company already is? I mean, how else could it still be existing? In terms of my son, I can only say ignorance is bliss. So no, I’m not going to do anything anymore, everything is juuuust…gonna be fine.

MONICA: Oh ya? So from now on, you’ve decided to sit on this chair, and believe everything will turn out the way you want it to be.

LEO: Yes, isn’t that how the mysterious “Dao” (Daoism) works? By doing nothing, by practicing “Non-doing”, everything ends in harmony.

MONICA: Well, if Laozi knows this is how you interpret his idea of Non-doing, I’m pretty sure he will jump out from his grave just to explain the concept to you. Um…From what I know, Laozi (The Old Master), one of the greatest philosophers in Chinese history, just like… Confucius, but in this case Laozi wrote  “Daodejing”, the book of Virtue, under the request of his King, to enlighten him the way of bringing harmony to his kingdom. That’s when he proposed the idea Wuwei (Non-doing), which emphasizes the nature course of things in Daoism. But I think “Non-doing” does not exactly mean “doing nothing”, because that’s just lazy; however, it could mean “do not force yourself or others into doing anything”.

LEO: What do you mean?

MONICA: Well, for example, it would be unwise if a king uses military force to rule his kingdom; or you try to beat up your son to death everytime he fails a test. I mean, seriously, hitting his head with a badminton racket can only result in a new low on his test score. And you know, you don’t want that.

LEO: Oh, you sound so smart now huh? What do you think I should do then?

MONICA: Oh that, I’m afraid I can’t do, because if I remembered correctly, the first sentence of Daodejing is “道可道,非常道”, meaning the great Dao can never be explained. You read the book last night. You know what I’m saying.

LEO: No I don’t know what you are saying. But you do make me frustrated.

MONICA: See, you are still a fob, crawling in the majestic continent of Daoism. Like a helpless infant without parenthood. Man if you wanna go pro, sometimes you would have to take a step back to lead; or step out to get in. If you know what I mean. cause these, I learned from Daodejing.

LEO: So, why don’t you step out of my office and never get in. Goodbye~

 

老子

lǎo zǐ

Lao-tzu

老子(约公元前580-公元前500年)姓李,名耳,字聃(dān)。楚国苦县(今河南鹿邑县东)人。做过周王朝掌管图书的史官,接受过孔子询问古礼的请求。

A philosopher in the Spring and Autumn Period founder of Taoism


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道德经

dào dé jīng

Tao-Te Ching

《老子》是中国古代哲学著作,传说是老子的作品,也叫《道德经》,被道教奉为典藏。

Tao-Te Ching or Lao-tzu is the main Taoist classics.


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无为

wú wéi

Quietism

《道德经》中的重要概念,就是顺从自然发展而自化,不加以人为的影响和干预。

The “Quietism” is the essence of Tao-Te Ching said by Laozi to mean active and a way of governing.


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哲学

zhé xué

Philosophy

是理论化、系统化的世界观,是自然知识、社会知识、思维知识的概括和总结,是世界观和方法论的统一。是社会意识的具体存在和表现形式,是以追求世界的本源、本质、共性或绝对、终极的形而上者为形式,以确立哲学世界观和方法论为内容的社会科学。

Philosophy is a theoretical and systematic view of the world. It is the summarization of natural knowledge, social knowledge and thought, and a study of problems about general and fundamental information, concerning matters such as existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language.


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答案:

1. 《老子》成书于于哪个年代?

答案:C. 战国前期

2. 《老子》和《道德经》是同一部著作吗?

答案:A. 是

你答对了吗?:)

 




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