The Kung-Fu of Green Wizardry

David Trammel's picture

I read this and all I could think of is how well this embodies the way of green wizardry.

It's a stunningly good piece -- the author's done a solid job of juxtaposing the very different worlds of Chinese and modern Western philosophy, and he knows his way around some unexpected corners of current philosophical literature. I was particularly pleased to see the reference to Pierre Hadot, whose books on Stoicism are among the best current explorations of that tradition -- The Inner Citadel and Philosophy as a Way of Life are two that I'd particularly recommend, as they deal with spiritual exercises as part of the philosopher's path.

David Trammel's picture

"...But as the Shaolin monk pointed out, kung fu embodies much more than fighting. In fact any ability resulting from practice and cultivation could accurately be said to embody kung fu. There is a kung fu of dancing, painting, cooking, writing, acting, making good judgments, dealing with people, even governing. During the Song and Ming dynasties in China, the term kung fu was widely used by the neo-Confucians, the Daoists and Buddhists alike for the art of living one’s life in general, and they all unequivocally spoke of their teachings as different schools of kung fu."

I'm not studied enough on philosophy to understand many of the author's finer points but what did keep coming to my mind as I read the article was the difference between Eastern mind set of adapting to the conditions at hand, making the best of it, against the Western way of quantifying a situation "scientifically" then trying to shoe horn it into an appropriate solution, and how Green Wizardary is more like the Eastern way of thinking.

As someone who grew up on episodes of "Kung Fu", like many here I expect, the way the blind monk who was Kane's teacher lead his life, not cursing his disability but enjoying the rest that Life gave him makes me hope that when I'm older and much greyer, and the World has already slide much further down the slope towards dark, I can have a similar outlook.

Funny how recently you have been telling us all on the Archdruid Report to find something we like, and become "good at it". I can't promise the temple, but hopefully I'll always have a cup of tea warming for those who stop by.