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Zuowang – Wikipedia

1. Historical Development and Significance: – ‘Zuowang’ originated during the Chinese Warring States Period. – It is mentioned in classical texts like ‘Zhuangzi’ and ‘Dao […]

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1. Historical Development and Significance:
– ‘Zuowang’ originated during the Chinese Warring States Period.
– It is mentioned in classical texts like ‘Zhuangzi’ and ‘Dao De Jing.’
– The practice influenced Daoist contemplative practices throughout history.
– ‘Zuowanglun’ from the Tang dynasty is an influential manual on ‘zuowang.’
– Other Chinese religions and philosophies have parallels to ‘zuowang.’

2. Philosophical and Cross-cultural Implications:
– ‘Zuowang’ signifies deep meditative absorption and oneness with Dao.
– It involves overcoming sensory and conscious faculties to merge with Dao.
– Similar practices are found in Buddhist traditions like ‘zazen’ and ‘zuochan.’
– Neo-Confucian leaders also advocated meditation practices akin to ‘zuowang.’
– The concept of sitting and forgetting is discussed in various Chinese philosophical texts.

3. Meditation Techniques and Practices:
– ‘Zuowang’ involves letting go of intentional and reactive patterns to attain Dao.
– Various texts like ‘Neiye’ and ‘Huainanzi’ provide insights into Daoist meditation practices.
– Key steps in ‘zuowang’ meditation include respect, interception of karma, and true observation.
– Realization of Dao through ‘zuowang’ leads to cosmic peace and wisdom.
– Medieval Daoism and the Quanzhen School emphasize seated meditation and internal alchemy.

4. Interpretation and Philosophical Underpinnings:
– Scholars like Roth, Kohn, and Oshima provide interpretations of ‘zuowang.’
– Posture and body control are essential in ‘zuowang’ to still the body and calm the mind.
– The practice leads to wisdom, no separation from Dao, and focuses on emptiness and clarity.
– Practitioners aim to access pure experience by letting go of ordinary perception.
– Modern Daoists use ‘zuowang’ for loss of self and conscious thought.

5. Influence of Buddhist Practices and Modern Interpretations:
– Daoist traditions integrate Buddhist ideas into meditation practices.
– Later works from Twofold Mystery tradition develop the theory of sitting in forgetfulness.
– Quanzhen school is influenced by Chan Buddhism in mental training for heart-mind stabilization.
– Schools of East Asian Buddhism adopt ‘zuowang’ practices for pure experience.
– Practitioners eliminate dualistic thinking and connections to deities in ‘zuowang’ practice.

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