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The Secret of the Golden Flower (Anglais) Broché – 12 mars 1993

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Descriptions du produit

Présentation de l'éditeur

The brilliant new translation of the classic Taoist guide to meditation that Carl Jung made famous.

'Thomas Cleary's translation is like an island of peace in the troubled sea of today's world. His beautifully lucid translation of the classic Chi

Biographie de l'auteur

Thomas Cleary is the preeminent translator of classic Eastern texts, including The Essential Tao, The Essential Confucius, The Secret of the Golden Flower, and the bestselling The Art of War.

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Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 160 pages
  • Editeur : HarperOne; Édition : Reprinted edition (12 mars 1993)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0062501933
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062501936
  • Dimensions du produit: 13,3 x 0,9 x 21 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 2.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 99.941 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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1 From the point of view of the universe, people are like mayflies; but from the point of view of the Way, even the universe is as an evanescent reflection. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Quatrième de couverture
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par beatrice renault le 15 novembre 2013
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Je suis très déçue, je cherche la traduction de Thomas Clearly, plus près des textes chinois et bien plus claire !
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Amazon.com: 31 commentaires
83 internautes sur 90 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Practitioners will find they owe Thomas Cleary a serious debt 19 octobre 2006
Par John S. Klingler - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I have been a practitioner in the Tibetan Vajrayana for over thirty years. This short book, which I have put into daily practice has corrected mistakes in my practice to such an extent that I feel I have wasted thirty years. This, of course, is not entirely true. Because of the extensive study during those years I could appreciate the depth of Cleary's translation and commentary as one who has successfully practiced this meditation.

With practice, the book gets more and more profound and the practice more refined. It subsumes the whole of the Buddhist canon and that of Taoism and Confucianism and Christianity as well. In particular it brings one to the realization that scriptures, while valuable, have the danger of enmeshing one in words and concepts. On a more personal note, it has helped free me from trying to reproduce past experiences of enlightened mind, which are now just memories and therefore also concepts and ideas.

I have waded through Stopping and Seeing, also translated by Mr. Cleary in volume V of his collected translations, and would advise against it. It is very similar to Ashvagosha's Awakening of Faith in the Mahayana, translated by D.T. Suzuki, which I studied at length many years ago. After your practice has reached a certain point, perhaps it might be of value to study such treatises.

Another thing that commends Mr. Cleary's translation is that he puts his commentary at the end so the translated text is presented without distractions. For this I am also grateful.

One thing that is not addressed in this or other meditation texts, nor by the meditation instructors I have had, is the basics of sitting meditation. I spent years "on the mat" working through bodily problems such as back aches, legs falling asleep and painful tensions that can be avoided by a few expediencies, to say nothing of the fact that posture is essential to integrating one's entire being in the practice.

First of all, it is important that the body be relaxed. One should not waste precious time trying to assume unfamiliar and strenuous asanas, e.g. the Lotus posture, but should sit on a cushion, e.g. a Zafu, that raises one's butt and use a mat, e.g a Zabuton, that protects one legs and ankles from hard surfaces.

Secondly, it is necessary to sit with the back straight and the spine unsupported. However, one needs to relax into this position, like stacking a pile of coins, once they are straight, you can let go. You do not want to let go entirely because from time to time tensions arise, for example you begin tensing your back, neck or legs. This subtle awareness will allow you to immediately relax such tensions and again let go. In this way you can eliminate years of trial and error on the mat.

I would add that this relaxing into the posture is the same approach you should take to the meditation itself.
31 internautes sur 33 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Book needs more than one reading 30 octobre 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Cleary writes an excellent translation of a foundational text. This is not a book that can be understood unless one has a general familiarity with Taoism and Buddhism. As a person follows either one of these disciplines, he or she may use the book as a sort of a gauge as to the depth of understanding one has gained. Each time I reread the book, I find that the content becomes clearer. In this sense it is excellent. It compliments other books in an eastern philosophy student's library.
52 internautes sur 59 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Clearly not for the beginner 25 décembre 2003
Par V. K. Lin - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
I had difficulty with this book. As I've stated before, finding
English translations on any text is difficult, because Chinese
ideograms are themselves sometimes associated with different
meanings based on context, and because, especially with regards
to religious symbolism and internal alchemy, the symbolism can
be quite esoteric.
This book is divided into sections. The first is Cleary's
direct translation. The second is his commentary for each verse.
The last is an afterward regarding the "technques" espoused in
this book relevant to modern life.
Personally, I would have found the commentary more useful
integrated directly after each verse. The translation is still
highly symbolic, and the commentary adds a little to
understanding what is trying to be said. As it is, I found
myself re-reading the translation verse by verse, at the end of
each verse thumbing to the appropriate commentary. I did not
find the direct translation so poetic that the interruptions
would have destroyed any aesthetic sense from reading it. At
the very least, commentary at the end of each chapter would
have been better.
To a layperson like me, this book provided illumination in
glimpses only. It was hardly direct, clear, or straightforward.
A very strong working knowledge in Chan Buddhism or the
Completely Real School of Taoism would have served me well, but
alas, I don 't have that. The symbolic content was frankly
overwhelming, and it wasn't until I re-read along with the
commentary that I had a sideways understanding of what the goal
of "turning the light around" actually meant.
In fact, much of this book is written like a dissertation.
Cleary spends much of his commentary efforts explaining why
his translation is superior to Wilhelm's, and why Jung's
theories are therefore misguided and/or incomplete since Jung
relied on the Wilhelm translation. I found this decidedly
distracting, but scholars may not.
For someone well-versed in this type of meditation technique,
this analogy-filled work may provide insights in stages. One
verse may be striking now, another verse revelationary only
years later. To me, trying to get a handle on the basic
principles and goals, this was like trying to see Michelangelo's
David through a stained glass-window. The color, the frilly
designs, the artistry of the window obscured my vision of
the very clearly masterful sculpture beyond.
Cleary would have been better-served writing an introduction
emphasizing required reading prior to reading this. For
someone who claims to actually practice this technique, he
never talks about the symbolic in more real terms-- even in
speculation. "Midnight refers to stillness, and water to
hidden knowledge, and fire to creativity..." and commentary
like that led me to respond not "Of course! Brilliant!"
but rather "Thanks a lot, that really helped... not."
I will likely re-read this book in a few years, and hope my
second time around proves more rewarding. Again, I did gain
some small insights... I think.
58 internautes sur 67 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A backward flip on a Mobius Strip. 31 mai 2005
Par Butch - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
FYI: You might want to read the Translation Notes at the end of this book before tackling "The Secret..." Some books are better read backward. Another tack would be to read Cleary's "The Essential Tao" before tackling "The Secret...".

"The Secret of the Golden Flower" is about a Taoist method of turning our attention from involvement in exterior mental objects to focusing on our interior essence or source of mind. Making our inside the outside, being aware of the projector and not merely the screen. A theme alluded to in the "Matrix" movies, what is real and what is simulation and which is better, choices, choices, choices. The "Secret" is about discovering that we have free will, that we choose our reality, that we are not only observers of but participants in reality. About finding ourself, our true self. We choose to see the glass as half full or half empty, same glass of water, different perceived reality, the power of intention is a great mystery, the mysterious pass. Looking at reality as though it is something completely exterior to us creates separation from reality, separation from ourselves, the Fall into Duality. This is the root cause of much of our World's inhumanity to Man and Nature. We are estranged from our lives. It's only a movie. We are focused on things instead of essence. We have taken the blue pill believing that ignorance is bliss. It is not. Ignorance is the source of pain and suffering for it is ignorance that clings to that which cannot be grasped, the simulacra. Ignorance is being attached to things outside ourselves, temporal things. We, on the otherhand, are eternal. Truth is found within. There is a spark of Divinity within each of us. One way of waking up to the truth is through mind altering drugs, the red pill of "The Matrix". Another way is through Meditation and Prayer and Study. I suggest the latter though a combination of the two ways is an ancient tradition. Love is the elixir of the Gods. The spiritual journey is about looking at reality from within ourselves, about coming into a conscious relationship with our true or eternal selves. Awareness focused on awareness.

Paradoxically, to transcend our rational mind we must begin with our rational mind. It is mind that dreams, and it is mind that wakes up. Taoism is about unifying our two minds. Waking up is done in "The Secret..." through the meditative technique known as "turning the light around". The purpose of this "switching" exercise is to free us from attachment to the limited mind of conditioned consciousness so that we can tune in to the liberated mind of primal spirit, our original self, our whole self. The "conscious spirit" is the mind-set of feelings, thoughts, and attitudes, conditioned by personal and cultural history, bound by habit to specific forms, the temporal self, the ego. The "original spirit" is the formless essence of awareness; it is unconditioned and transcends culture and history, the eternal self. Form is created by that which is formless. Our essence is a part of the formless essence of ultimate reality, the eternal Tao. Intuition belongs to the original spirit; intellect belongs to the conscious spirit. The essence of Taoism is to refine the conscious spirit to reunite it with the original spirit. To live fully awakened lives within the realm of dreams, the ultimate form of lucid dreaming. Love breaks down all barriers. It isn't that we are trying to change the world, it is just that in changing ourselves, the world changes. Though his laws are without sentiment, without favor or prejudice, God is an eternal optimist. God is a God of Love, even tough love.

To borrow phrasing from another book about Taoism, "Every Day Tao" by Leonard Willoughby, the "Host", original primal spirit-the Eternal Tao, God, wants his/her "Guests", you and me, to take our shoes off and sit a spell. The purpose of redirecting our attention is Not to destroy the conscious spirit, the ego, it is to refine it so that it can function properly as a subordinate functionary of the original spirit here in the everyday world of duality, the Matrix. The problem isn't the material realm, the problem is our attachment to it. To be a proper "Guest" we need to behave in a mature fashion, a refined fashion. Methods of reversal, such as turning the light around, are used to put our horse in front of our cart, to put things straight again. To see reality as and for what it is. To make us whole. To combine our two minds, our rational and irrational minds, into a harmonious and balanced whole. The Universe is an organic synergetic whole. The Universe is not one, nor is it two. It is an irrational, beyond rational, whole number between one and two, a unitive whole, nonlinear. This is a great mystery to the rational mind. We are a part of that whole. The Moon is reflected in a thousand ponds. By no longer being fixated on conscious spirit or its objects the intellect functions efficiently in the world, unattached to form we are able to be all that we can be. The spiritual life can then be lived to its fullest in the mundane world, the way of the Bodhisattva. The way of Neo.

Being still, while a necessary exercise for introspection, is not meant to be a permanent position. Balance is fundamental, and it is dynamic. We are to avoid excessive stilling as we would avoid excessive excitation, as we would any extreme. Go to yin, go to yang, balance the two, do not dwell at either extreme. With that said, few of us are in danger of being too still for too long. No extreme is a proper subject of fixation. Fixation itself is an extreme. Cults are the result of fixation. Fixation is unbalanced. The Taoist wants to live a balanced and thus spontaneous life free to move from yin to yang and back again, not a contrived existence in a forced middle ground. Taoism is about making the conscious decision to make the shift from free will to free flow. About going with the grain of reality. The Master Taoist surfs the current of the Tao from one yin wave to the next yang wave to another yin wave, and so on. Balance is dynamic.

We learn to practive what we preach by direct experience, not by any prescribed belief system. Turning the light around is a direct experience. Once we find that we can turn the light around we are well on our way to living an independent life governed by will and not circumstance. The mature Will chooses free flow. To fight the current is our fate, to go with the flow is our destiny. To attach to yin or yang is a blockage. It is our higher self, spirit, that directs the current. Trust is an essential part of the Taoist's way of life. The Taoist trusts him or her inner self.

Turning the light around is not culture specific because it is not based upon forms, but on the formless. Cultures are for the most part form specific. The average Chinaman or woman is no more aware of the inner life than the average citizen of any other culture. Most people are asleep in the Matrix of form. Most people do not want to be unplugged, or at least aren't ready. Those that awaken to the inner life are to date in the minority. The Creator has given us free will. To awaken is a choice. No one can wake up for us. To date most people are content to be things, to define themselves by things, by the outside. To awaken is to redefine oneself, to establish a new identity. This is not easy. The status quo has a lot of inertia. The energy to overcome that inertia can only be found within.

Contemplative or Philosophic Taoism is transcultural. Religious Taoism is seemingly a bit of an oxymoron to us here in the West. We have been burned by Religion and Personality Cults far too often. Religious Taoism is the practice of Philosophic Taoism. The yin and the yang of it. Form is not so much the problem as attachment to form. This is true of any religion and its forms. The "Secret of the Golden Flower" is about developing perception independent of cultural forms so as to allow for autonomous conduct. About being free from attachments to a reality outside oneself. To see things as they are, not as they are locally defined. In this way one becomes a part of a transcendent interior culture that has no national boundaries. True Taoism is very democratic and egalitarian, as is all true spirituality. A citizen of the eternal Tao is able to think deliberately rather than compulsively, for he or she is psychically free. The more real self, the eternal self, the unconditioned self, is that self that can distinguish between one's various selves without becoming divided, without becoming attached. We are awareness. The Taoist is concerned with both the supernatural and the natural. Life is good, even with the bad. Yin cannot exist without yang, and vice versa. Night without day is a shadow. Life without death is dead. Life is bittersweet. This world of form is not only our temporal home, it is also our school. The Philosophic Taoist reaches for the stars with both feet on the ground. We are a microcosm of the macrocosm. True Taoists are not elitists, they are realists.

The "Secret" can be a difficult read, but I feel it is worth the effort. If I have gotten carried away I am sorry. I write to focus my own thoughts as well as share them. I will revisit this review and make it more succinct and hopefully less redundant and more clear. As mentioned above, "Every Day Tao" is a good read. Then there is "Tao: The Watercourse Way" by Alan Watts, and so on. Of course Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu are must reading.
16 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Inestimable 26 juin 1998
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
This translation by Thomas Cleary is truly an inestimable work of high level instruction for piercing the veil of lower consciousness and greatly increasing the soul's ability to recognize and comprehend truth in whatever form it is presented. The practice of the 'Golden Flower' itself is a method whereby the mind becomes attuned to reality in a way that inhibits the degeneration of consciousness and begins to restore the life of the heart and soul for the practitioner who truly desires to ascend. Thomas Cleary's work itself is highly valuable to all english speaking persons today as it adds greatly to resources which were previously unaccessable, and his high comprehension of Chinese and other languages in translation brings spiritual truth as it was told by sages of old one step closer to the human heart.
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