The brightest signs of art and thought in civilization often spring fromturmoil, be it outer war or inner strife, as is definitely the case in ancientChina. During one of these periods in transition of government and ruling class,two distinct philosophies sprang from the raging waters of Chinas ever-cyclicriver of war and rebuilding. These philosophies were the brain-children of twovery notable individuals, Confucius and Chuang Tzu, both of whom saw thesuffering of their country men and felt called upon to render the way whichwould relieve their people. Confucius, was a very rational, logical man whobelieved that the world could be set into its proper order by prescribing moralsembedded in rituals practiced by those in power. Therefore instilling adesire for the people to practice these same rituals and ultimately leading amoral educated life. Although this is just a very basic statement of Confucianthought it does illustrate the great differences in the approaches taken bythese two men.
For while in all his teachings Confucius stressed the importanceof morals and the attention that must be paid to scholastics and the matters ofthe physical world of politics and order, Chuang Tzu, takes an entirelydifferent, and I believe, commonly misunderstood approach to resolving the sameissue. In his writings Chuang Tzu, constantly hints at the existence of thismystical energy force, which flows with exact order through the cosmos, apresence if you will that has been since there has been anything, but yet is notold. In the mind of Chuang Tzu, when one discovered this flow, and was able toestablish a solid connection, one would be filled with the energy of the cosmos,taking its power with them wherever they went, constantly using it to guidethem through the labyrinth that appears to those outside of the way to bethe path of life. Therefore, by establishing and maintaining this connection,one can no in absolute certainty what is and what should be the proper course ofaction they should take. It has been said many times that Chuang Tzu himself wasquite a spiritual mystic, which I believe to be a fitting description. However,the problem arises when individuals take this description and simply write offhis works as nothing more than complex fairy tales separated by only a fewdegrees from those of dragons and fairies in western myth.
One must not makethis mistake, for mysticism and the life and work of and eastern spiritualmystic has just as much validity as does that of faith and the writings ofanother quite mystic spiritual character found embedded in westernthought, this person being none other than Jesus of Nazareth. There are manyquestions which modern science has no answer and for these questions the mysticshave the upper hand, for if through their arts, one souls finds their way thenthey have accomplished a task which will forever elude the scientific realm.Philosophy .