A Study of Basic Characteristics of "The Man of Tao" of Lao Tzu và "Self-Actualizing People" of Maslow
This thesis serves two purposes: One, it reveals the influences of Taoist philosophy on Maslow"s humanistic psychology which has become the third force in the field of psychology; secondly it lets all those who have regarded Chinese classics as nothing but a bundle of obsolete stuffs know that an archaic well still has fresh water to be drawn out khổng lồ use.
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In Tao Te Ching, or Lao Tzu the book, the man of Tao & innocent child are highly praised by Lao Tzu and may be referred to lớn as ideal characters of his mind. Metaphysically, Tao is the Way, the universal principles of existence. It is "the origin of Heaven and Earth," and "the mother of all things." It is eternal, one, all-pervasive, và absolute. Above all, it is natural. & Tao has non-action, wu-wei, as its standard. From this it is quite clear that the way of wu-wei is the way of spontaneity, to be contrasted with the artificial way, the way of cleverness and superficial morality. It is Lao Tzu"s attitude toward knowledge that when knowledge và intelligence appeared, there emerged great hypocrisy. So Lao Tzu emphasizes that people should have little knowledge. With decreasing knowledge people are in a right position to know how lớn be content and where khổng lồ stop. In other words, people live in a simple life, a life of plainness, in which profit is discarded, cleverness abandoned, selfishness minimized & desires reduced. According khổng lồ Lao Tzu, the idealization of the Man of Tao & innocent child is nothing more than the idealization of the Tao or Nature itself.
In the case of Maslow, the self-actualizing people is a Being-lover or Being-cognizer. The word ""Being" is commonly referred to the reality of universe in metaphysics of Western philosophy. If we substitute Being by Chinese expression, Tao is the exact word whatsoever.
The man of Tao has, in most part of spheres, the same characteristics which a self-actualizing people or B-lover cherishes.
There are in total fourteen characteristics of the self-actualizing people in Maslow"s report, but a couple of characteristics can be regarded as a by-product of some basic characteristics lớn which a self-actualizing person pertains. Here are the abstracted four major characteristics which are shared by both the man of Tao & B-lover. Creativeness, Solitude, privacy, psychic space, lớn understand reality is khổng lồ be enlightened Spontaneity
Once an ideal character is found, a desire of working on a Utopia in which we hope lớn live is stirred naturally. Both Lao Tzu & Maslow have their own desirable Utopia.
In the case of Lao Tzu, it is a small & sparsely populated kingdom in which the great Tao prevails and then people enjoy their lives. They are well satisfied with their basic needs và their spiritual lives are also harmonized. They are free from danger throughout their life time.
Maslow coined his human-oriented institutions ""Eupsychia." In Eupsychia, Maslow believed "this would almost surely be a (philosophically) anarchistic group, a Taoistic but loving culture, in which people (young people too) would have much more không lấy phí choice than we are used to, và in which basic needs and meta needs would be respected much more than they are in our society. People would not bother each other so much as we do, would be much less prone to press opinions or religions or philosophies or tastes in clothes or food or art or women on their neighbors. In a word, the inhabitants of Eupsychia would tend to lớn be more Taoistic, non-intrusive, and basic need-gratifying (whenever possible), would frustrate only under certain conditions that I have not attempted to describe, would be more honest with each other than we are, and would permit people to lớn make free choices wherever possible."