Road to Heaven: Encounters with Chinese Hermits by Bill Porter

By Bill Porter

Invoice Porter (Red Pine) trekked via China's distant Chungnan Mountains looking for hermits. classes of non secular knowledge emerge from his interviews with greater than twenty female and male hermits. "A stupendous corrective to fashionable American Zen practice". -- Jim Harrison, Tricycle: The Buddhist Review"(A) attention-grabbing book". -- Yoga magazine

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Example text

If he is rash, he cannot govern If the World Is Muddy 0 33 his nature. While he is still young, he spurs himself on. While he still can, he completes his work. Decay seldom receives the world's sympathy. What can he accomplish, if he remains in seclusion? " The difference has been not so much a matter of philosophy as of temperament and perception. The aim has remained the same: the application of the principles of the Tao to human affairs. This was true for Confucius, for Ch'u Yuan, for Po-yi and Shu-ch'i, as well as for Chang Liang, the Four Worthies, and Chu-ko Liang.

We assumed this meant it was located near some son of military installation. But according to the monks, the only sights at West Loukuantai were a small temple and Lao-tzu's grave. , he said Lao-tzu continued west and finally disappeared through the Sankuan Pass-a two-days' ride from Loukuantai. A Taoist monk at the temple told me that both stories were probably true. Taoists, he said, shed their bones like a snake sheds its skin, and Lao-tzu could easily have left his mortal coil at Loukuantai before slipping away.

Earlier, from his observatory in the Chungnan Mountains, he had seen a purple cloud moving across the sky from east to west and had deduced from his knowledge of heavenly signs that a sage would soon be passing through the area. He had subsequently arranged for his appointment as warden of the pass normally used by travelers coming from the east, and he recognized Lao-tzu as the sage he was waiting for. Following Lao-tzu's arrival, he resigned from his new post and invited the sage to accompany him to his observatory at Loukuantai.

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