a cache of usenet and other text files pertaining
to occult, mystical, and spiritual subjects.


Zen & Taoism

To: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.philosophy.taoism,talk.religion.buddhism,alt.philosophy.zen,alt.zen,alt.religion.buddhism
From: xiwangmu 
Subject: Re: Zen & Taoism
Date: Fri, 22 Mar 2002 23:26:52 GMT

50020322 VI

> Taoists aren't obsessed with "self", whereas it's all zen monks think about.. 

such generalizations are both fallacious and unbecoming of a respectful
comparison betwen these mammoth socioreligious and mystical traditions.
more truthfully, issues of impermanence and identity tend to obsess
the Zen Buddhist, while the Taoist hermit may be more interested in
the Way and how they fit into the Cosmic Wheel.

> that and the rules of the sangha.

see the rules at the White Mountain (Taoist) Monastery.

> Taoists would seem freeer than Zen monks, except that they have
> a hangup of their own : the "chi" life force, and the idea that
> by cultivating the life force immortality can be achieved.

there are hung-up people in every religiomagical and mystical culture.
they are not representative. focal concepts are valuable to identify,
but generalizing them across all participants is an error.

> Taoists never suffer.  Zen masters always do.

silly. there are concepts of "dukkha" which sometimes translate to
"suffering" in Buddhism, but this hardly identifies the Zen roshi.

> Taoists believe in magic.

not all. many, especially those who are more fond of the philosophic
approach (largely solitary and mystical), wish to have nothing to do
with magic at all. some combine the philophic and magical with no
problems whatever.

> Zen is strictly rational and materialistic.

displaying a misapprehension of the foundations of Zen Buddhism,
which is *trans*rational in its approach, and predominantly non-dual.

> Taoists have the Tao Teh King which explains Taoism from A to Z.

the Lao (aka "Classic of Tao and Teh") is not an encyclopedia of Taoism,
though it is very important to many (not all) Taoists. probably more
important to Taoists, however, is probably what is called 'The Taoist
Canon' (collected scripture, liturgy, magicoreligious scripture, etc.).

> Zen has hundreds of books that bedevil the neophyte to such
> an extent he loses track of what or who he is, a dog or Dogen.

the trans-rational sometimes requires a stick made of the wood
which gave splinters in order to leverage them free.

> Zen looks to the Heart Sutra,

doesn't start there, but agreed. the Mahaprajnaparamita Sutra
(Great Heart of Wisdom Scripture), also known as 'the Heart Sutra',
is attributed to the great culture hero 'Arjuna of the Nagas' aka
Nagarjuna, whose expression, along with that of the Yogacara school,
were utilized by the Dhyana/Ch'an/Zen schools of Buddhism in the
foundation of what they called 'The Great Vehicle' (Mahayana,
extending much beyond Zen in scope and including Tibetan Buddhism
and other types also).

> the Diamond Sutra.

I'm not sure who loves this text, though it wouldn't surprise me
if Tibetan or other Buddhists like this as much or more than Zen
Buddhists. is this the same as 'The Diamond-Cutter Sutra'? given
an attribution that it helps the sitter cut through the dross of
personal consciousness to see what is apparent?

> Taoism has no equivalent texts.

this is false. there are many references contradicting this,
including essays by authors like Strickman in "Facets of Taoism",
in which these (often alchemical, sometimes ecstatic) texts are
examined and considered as to their authority. Ko Hung's writings
are an example of this, one might also compare the Chuang Tzu.


The Arcane Archive is copyright by the authors cited.
Send comments to the Arcane Archivist:

Did you like what you read here? Find it useful?
Then please click on the Paypal Secure Server logo and make a small
donation to the site maintainer for the creation and upkeep of this site.

The ARCANE ARCHIVE is a large domain,
organized into a number of sub-directories,
each dealing with a different branch of
religion, mysticism, occultism, or esoteric knowledge.
Here are the major ARCANE ARCHIVE directories you can visit:
interdisciplinary: geometry, natural proportion, ratio, archaeoastronomy
mysticism: enlightenment, self-realization, trance, meditation, consciousness
occultism: divination, hermeticism, amulets, sigils, magick, witchcraft, spells
religion: buddhism, christianity, hinduism, islam, judaism, taoism, wicca, voodoo
societies and fraternal orders: freemasonry, golden dawn, rosicrucians, etc.


There are thousands of web pages at the ARCANE ARCHIVE. You can use ATOMZ.COM
to search for a single word (like witchcraft, hoodoo, pagan, or magic) or an
exact phrase (like Kwan Yin, golden ratio, or book of shadows):

Search For:
Match:  Any word All words Exact phrase


Southern Spirits: 19th and 20th century accounts of hoodoo, including slave narratives & interviews
Hoodoo in Theory and Practice by cat yronwode: an introduction to African-American rootwork
Lucky W Amulet Archive by cat yronwode: an online museum of worldwide talismans and charms
Sacred Sex: essays and articles on tantra yoga, neo-tantra, karezza, sex magic, and sex worship
Sacred Landscape: essays and articles on archaeoastronomy, sacred architecture, and sacred geometry
Lucky Mojo Forum: practitioners answer queries on conjure; sponsored by the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.
Herb Magic: illustrated descriptions of magic herbs with free spells, recipes, and an ordering option
Association of Independent Readers and Rootworkers: ethical diviners and hoodoo spell-casters
Freemasonry for Women by cat yronwode: a history of mixed-gender Freemasonic lodges
Missionary Independent Spiritual Church: spirit-led, inter-faith, the Smallest Church in the World
Satan Service Org: an archive presenting the theory, practice, and history of Satanism and Satanists
Gospel of Satan: the story of Jesus and the angels, from the perspective of the God of this World
Lucky Mojo Usenet FAQ Archive: FAQs and REFs for occult and magical usenet newsgroups
Candles and Curios: essays and articles on traditional African American conjure and folk magic
Aleister Crowley Text Archive: a multitude of texts by an early 20th century ceremonial occultist
Spiritual Spells: lessons in folk magic and spell casting from an eclectic Wiccan perspective
The Mystic Tea Room: divination by reading tea-leaves, with a museum of antique fortune telling cups
Yronwode Institution for the Preservation and Popularization of Indigenous Ethnomagicology
Yronwode Home: personal pages of catherine yronwode and nagasiva yronwode, magical archivists
Lucky Mojo Magic Spells Archives: love spells, money spells, luck spells, protection spells, etc.
      Free Love Spell Archive: love spells, attraction spells, sex magick, romance spells, and lust spells
      Free Money Spell Archive: money spells, prosperity spells, and wealth spells for job and business
      Free Protection Spell Archive: protection spells against witchcraft, jinxes, hexes, and the evil eye
      Free Gambling Luck Spell Archive: lucky gambling spells for the lottery, casinos, and races