Monday, September 24

Reading assignment:  Daoism, 1-10

As the reading title tells you, we are going to talk about Daoism Tuesday. We will deal in turn with the first of two fundamental texts of early Daoism, the Dao de jing

The teachings of the Dao de jing are usually regarded as the earliest form of Daoism, and we will discuss a few of its most interesting ideas. Your online reading includes a pretty generous selection of the book's 81 chapters, and we'll turn to some of those to illustrate how these ideas appear in their original textual form. (If you are interested in looking at more of the Dao de jing, you can link to a complete online translation on the course website.)

In approaching the Daoist texts, it would be useful to review in advance the Confucian doctrine of Timeliness, which resonates closely with Daoist potical themes. (Timeliness is discussed in your reading on Confucius and the Origins of Confucianism, pp. 15-16.)