Re: A Question for the Scholars?
Posted by Nina on 11/25/2009, 1:02 pm, in reply to "A Question for the Scholars?"
: Why does Verse 4 in some translations of the
: TTC read that "It is 'as if' the Tao is
: the Source of us all"? Is it, or isn't
: In R.L. Wing's translation he states that
: the "Tao" 'resembles' the Source
: of All Things. He then states in his
: commentary that the Tao is not the Source of
: the Universe. It is not the Absolute. Rather
: the Tao is the "Way" everything in
: the Universe changes and evolves.
Here's the Chinese characters for that line, Butch:
象 xiàng (hsiang) resemble, image, appear as
帝 dì (ti) emperor, supreme ruler
之 zhī (chih) 's (denotes possesive) his, hers, its, theirs
先 xiān (hsien) what came before, in advance, precede
It seems to have preceded the first concept of existence.
One of the commentaries included in Red Pine's book:
Li Yueh says, "Ti is the Lord of Creation. All of creation comes after Ti, except the Tao, which comes before. But the nature of the Tao is to yield, hence Lao-tzu doesn't insist it came before. Thus he says 'it seems.' "
DDJ 4 is asking the question "When Did Dao Begin?"
Since most people (even those in Lao Zi's time) came up with the belief in a Master Creator (Creationism), it would be hard to tell them that anything could have existed before their Creator created everything. So, The Laozi is simply asking people to consider the possibility that their beliefs could be wrong. It's kind of a gentle approach.
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