Monday, 17 December 2012

Any resemblance between these two contemplative-thinkers ?

Laozi (6th Century BC) Dao De Jing, I (translator T. Chilcott)

‘The Way that can be spoken of is not the changeless DAO.
The name that can be named is not the changeless Name.
Namelessness: the blank that was before both heaven and earth.
Naming: the mother of all living things.
To understand the mysteries of DAO, empty yourself of all desire;
to understand its outward forms, fill yourself with all desire.
DAO and the world flow from the same source, but differ in name.
Their oneness is a mystery, a mystery upon a mystery,
the gateway to the essence of everything that is.’

Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite (650 - 725),  Mystical Theology, Caput V (translator John Parker)

‘On the other hand, ascending, we say, that It is neither soul, nor mind, nor has imagination, or opinion, or reason, or conception; neither is expressed, nor conceived; neither is number, nor order, nor greatness, nor littleness; nor equality, nor inequality; nor similarity, nor dissimilarity; neither is standing, nor moving; nor at rest; neither has power, nor is power, nor light; neither lives, nor is life; neither is essence nor eternity, nor time; neither is Its touch intelligible, neither is It science, nor truth; nor kingdom, nor wisdom; neither one, nor oneness; neither Deity, nor Goodness; nor is It Spirit according to our understanding; nor Sonship, nor Paternity; nor any other thing of those known to us, or to any other existing being; neither is It any of non-existing nor of existing things, nor do things existing know It, as It is; nor does It know existing things, qua  existing; neither is there expression of It, nor name, nor knowledge; neither is It darkness, nor light; nor error, nor truth; neither is there any definition at all of It, nor any abstraction. But when making the predications and abstractions of things after It, we neither predicate, nor abstract from It; since the all-perfect and uniform Cause of all is both above every definition and the pre-eminence of Him, Who is absolutely freed from all, and beyond the whole, is also above every abstraction.’

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