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14 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Five elements of Chinese philosophy?
Earth, water, metal, wood, fire
In Chinese philosophy, the rhythm of life, which pulsates through the universe, is the action of complementary principles Yin and Yang. The T'ai-chi T'u diagram (left) illustrates this principle. The symmetrical disposition of the dark Yin and the light Yang suggests cyclical changes. When Yin reaches its climax, it recedes in favour of Yang, then after Yang reaches its climax it recedes in favour of Yin. This is the eternal cycle. The dots inside the white and black halves indicate that within each is the seed of the other. Yin cannot exist without Yang and vice versa.The ideal state of things in the physical universe, as well as in the world of humans, is a state of harmony represented by the balance of Yin and Yang in body and mind.
Yin is the quiet, female, intuitive, receiving force that is associated with earth. The earth is the source of life; it provides us with what we need to survive. Yin is associated with the following ideas and things:

- Night, Dark
- Rain, Water, Cold
- Winter, Autumn
- Odd Numbers
- The Moon
- North, West
- Right, Down
- Intuition
- Passive, Static
- Contraction, Decreasing
- Conservative, Traditional
- Valley
- River
- Curve
- Soft
- Solidifying
- Psychological (Astral) World
- Dragon
- Kidneys, Heart, Liver, Lungs
Yang is the strong, male, creative, giving force that is associated with heaven. The heaven above us is always in motion and brings about change. Yang is associated with the following ideas and things:

- Day, Light
- Sunshine, Fire, Heat
- Summer, Spring
- Even Numbers
- The Sun
- South, East
- Left, Up
- Intellect
- Active, Dynamic
- Expansion, Increasing
- Innovative, Reformative
- Mountain
- Desert
- Straight Line
- Hard
- Dissolving
- Physical (Observable) World
- Tiger
- Bladder, Intestines, Skin
The Way
A paradox "action without action."
The Book of Changes is the oldest of the Chinese classic texts. It describes an ancient system of cosmology and philosophy which is at the heart of Chinese cultural beliefs. The philosophy centers on the ideas of the dynamic balance of opposites, the evolution of events as a process, and acceptance of the inevitability of change (see Philosophy, below). In Western cultures, the I Ching is regarded by some as simply a system of divination; many believe it expresses the wisdom and philosophy of ancient China
Tao Te Ching
The Tao Te Ching was written in China roughly 2,500 years ago at about the same time when Buddha expounded the Dharma in India and Pythagoras taught in Greece. The Tao Te Ching is probably the most influential Chinese book of all times. Its 81 chapters have been translated into English more times than any other Chinese document. The Tao Te Ching provides the basis for the philosophical school of Taoism, which is an important pillar of Chinese thought. Taoism teaches that there is one undivided truth at the root of all things. It literally means:
= tao (the way)
= te (strength/virtue)
= ching (scripture
T’ai Chi Chaun
commonly known as Tai Chi, T'ai Chi, or Taiji, is an internal Chinese martial art. There are different styles of T'ai Chi Ch'üan, although most agree they are all based on the system originally taught by the Chen family to the Yang family starting in 1820. It is often promoted and practiced as a martial arts therapy for the purposes of health and longevity, (some recent medical studies support its effectiveness). T'ai Chi Ch'üan is considered a soft style martial art, an art applied with as complete a relaxation or "softness" in the musculature as possible, to distinguish its theory and application from that of the hard martial art styles which use a degree of tension in the muscles.Variations of T'ai Chi Ch'üan's basic training forms are well known as the slow motion routines that groups of people practice every morning in hundreds of parks across China and other parts of the world. Traditional T'ai Chi training is intended to teach awareness of one's own balance and what affects it, awareness of the same in others, an appreciation of the practical value in one's ability to moderate extremes of behavior and attitude at both mental and physical levels, and how this applies to effective self-defense principles.
Chaung Tzu
Chuang Tzu is believed to lived in the Fourth or Third Century BCE, at a time when China was split up into a number of states weakly held together by the Chou dynasty. He was a minor government official for a while and was offered higher office, but declined on the grounds that it would limit his freedom. His thought is contained in the 33 chapters that remain of the Chuang Tzu, which describes both his philosophy and his way of life. In it, Chuang Tzu enlarges on the teachings of Lao Tzu in a lively Taoist discourse that opposes the ideas of Confucius and Mo Tzu. These philosophers argued for particular ways for improving the condition of man, each contradicting the other. Chuang Tzu argued that the processes of nature unify all things, so that humanity should seek to live at one with nature and not impose upon it. He concluded that one could do more by doing nothing. Chuang Tzu viewed nature as having great spontaneity and change, with all things—large and small, beautiful and ugly—equally important and ever in a constant flux. In this way, he enlarged the notion of the co-dependence of things, one causing change in another, which appears in Buddha’s thought. Chuang Tzu also emphasized the mutual causation of opposites: for example, that life leads to death. His dislike of formal structures lead him to put forward his ideas in imaginary dialogues
Lao Tzu
Not much is known about Lao Tzu, at least nothing that is certain. Some even doubt whether he is the author of the Tao Te Ching. However, his name became legendary with this writing, which also happens to be his only work. Lao Tzu (his name is sometimes written Lao Tse or Lao Zi, and he is also known as Li Er and Lao Dan) was supposedly born in Honan on the 24th of March in the year 604 BC. His name means "old-young" and he has been called the "Old Master".Lao Tzu was very old, when he rode on a water buffalo to retire in the mountains to a province in the western frontiers. There he was approached by a border official named Guan Yin Zi, who urged the master to write down his teachings so that they might be passed on. Lao Tzu then retreated into the solitude of the mountain pass, wrote the Tao Te Ching, whereupon he went westward and was never seen again.
(Chinese: “Heaven”), in indigenous Chinese religion, the supreme power reigning over lesser gods and men. The term T'ien may refer to a deity, to impersonal nature, or to both.