The Nine Emperor Gods Festival, a nine-day Taoist celebration beginning on the eve of the 9th lunar month of the Chinese calendar, is observed primarily in Southeast Asian countries. Thailand’s celebration is called the Phuket Vegetarian Festival, and is notable for devotees called Ma Song—“entranced horses”—whom the gods enter during the festival. [more inside]
15 Funky Things Chinese People Burnt for their Ancestors A quirky look into a mainstay ritual of the Hungry Ghost Festival. What's that? From the Straits Times: All You Need to Know and Heed about the 7th Month Celebrations. From The Beijinger: Everything You Need to Know About this Year's Ghost Festival. And maybe you're familiar with the festival and all its taboos. Or are you?
The Silence of Animals: On Progress and Other Modern Myths. Simon Critchley gives both an overview of philosopher John Gray's thought and reviews Gray's new book.
92 years young, the delightful Raymond Smullyan is a mathematician, logician, magician, concert pianist, and Taoist philosopher - who also pioneered retrograde chess problems.
Zhuangzi as Philosopher Essay by Brook Ziporyn made available (there's also some other prefatory matter there) at the website of the publishers of his translation of the Zhuangzi, one of the seminal texts of Daoism, putatively authored by Zhuang Zhou in the fourth century BCE. Via, where there's plenty of other informed discussion on Zhuangzi, Daoism and other ancient Chinese thought.
Twenty-nine Tao te Chings, a line at a time. For Sunday evening, a spare, meditative post. The Tao-te-Ching in 29 translations, line by line and side by side. I'll leave you to investigate the writings on your own; here alone are just the words to consider. Suggested: Mitchell. [more inside]
Terence Gray was an English born aristocrat of an Irish family. He tried his hand at Egyptology, drama and theater, but gave it up to keep the family vineyards in the Monaco. He owned the winner of the 1957 Ascot Gold cup. He also became a mystic. [more inside]
Chinese classics and translations. A collection of some of the greatest works of Chinese literature in the original chinese and translated in English and French. Every Chinese character is also a link to a chinese dictionary, allowing you to translate on the fly. Includes the Yi Jing The Book of Changes, Dao De Jing The Way and Its Power, The Analects of Confucius, Sun Tzu's Art of War and many more.
Crispin Sartwell is a cryptic and sensational man. The Chair of Humanities and Sciences at the Maryland Institute College of Art, he has translated the Tao Te Ching, published philosophy papers and books, maintained pages on hip hop, founded the American Nihilist Party (and gave a speech to young Democrats urging them to reconsider their votes for John Kerry), taught courses on conjuring and illusion, etc. etc. See also his essay on the pagan cult of mathematics and his thought experiment on music.