Mr. Lāng Ông Lost His Horse

1545 words - 7 pages

Philosophy
Professor Williams
Mr. Lāng Ông Lost his Horse

In Chinese philosophy, the Yīn-Yāng doctrine is the foundation of Taoism in which it illustrates the harmonious nature of polar opposites. Although many stories can demonstrate the essence of YīnYāng, the parable “Mr. Lãng Ông Lost his Horse” exemplifies it perfectly. In this paper, I will explain Houston Smith and Donna Quesada’s interpretation of the aforementioned parable and provide a critical response of each thought. Lastly, I will expound on my own alternative interpretation using Hegalian dialectics.
Huston Smith is a revered religious studies scholar and has gained prominence with his popular book called The World’s ...view middle of the document...

” While Mr. Lāng Ông perceives the interdependence of these two incidences, the neighbor sees them as independent instances with no relationship.
Smith’s interpretation is sensible in that these instances are interdependent and closely connected. I wholeheartedly agree with his premise, because it becomes inconsistent to say the departure of the horse is bad fortune if the next day the horse returns with two or more horses and now it is perceived to be good fortune. We should not separate these instances since it is impossible to have one without the other. We should see these instances as coexisting elements that are inseparable.
Donna Quesada provides a different viewpoint from Huston Smith, although the idea she introduces is an essential concept within Taoism. After explaining the parable to her Santa Monica College students, she presents the theory of relativity and the importance of it within Taoism. In the parable, the neighbor immediately gives his value judgment, whether good or bad, to each occurrence, while Mr. Lāng Ông shrugs each instance nonchalantly. Relativity emphasizes the importance of measuring and judging situations as good or bad based on their circumstances and in comparison to other situations.
Quesada provides an example in which she incorporates the concept of relativity within the parable. Towards the end of the parable, Mr.Lāng Ông’s son hurts his leg that prevents him from battling in a futile war. When comparing his injury to going to battle, the injury now seems extremely beneficial to the son. It validates the idea that things are good or bad based on the context and how they are valued against other things.
To an extent the concept of relativity is true, however from my perspective it is not absolute. Quesada used an example of a poor person and stated that the poor person is not necessary poor without examining the context of his/her economic condition or comparing his/her economic status with the situations of others. Well, I don’t believe that. If I am dirt poor and consumed by poverty, this fact will not change if it is placed in comparison to someone’s extreme destitution because I am poor regardless. The hunger will not stop, and the emptiness I feel within my stomach will not be fulfilled. It is true that when compared to something worse it may seem less significant, however it does not improve my situation.
The positive aspect of relativity is that it enables an individual to think about the circumstances and contexts deeply. Most people tend to be like the “neighbor” who was haste to make a value judgment without trying to understand the context. It enables a person to step back and view the circumstances from a neutrally holistic and objective way that can lead to comprehensive thought. It removes a person making quick judgments that are usually subjective. Our judgments are often shaped by the culture and environment we were raised and thus, based on influence. Taoism’s relativity gives...

Other Essays Like Mr. Lāng Ông Lost His Horse

Goodbye to Miss Gee Essay

857 words - 4 pages window, beckoning with his thumb, a sign between friends. “I’ve got your money here, all counted up,” Mr Moorland shouted through the glass, lifting up a small bag. Jack, a popular local boy, worked on his father’s milk round and was easily recognised wearing white overalls. “We lost a customer last week from down Clevedon Terrace, ”Jack said,” what a sorry sight, never smiled, dressed in grey and buttoned up tight, kept herself to herself

Johnny Tremain Essay

314 words - 2 pages because of his bad hand. Johnny could not find any job until he met a printer called Rab who taught him how to ride a horse and how to write with his left hand, and gave him a nice place to sleep.IV. ("Loose Ends Tied Up") Rab was one of the sons of Liberty, so when Revolutionary War started, Rab was sure to sign up to fight in the war. The war continued, but Rab died and so did hundreds of others. Johnny lived happily ever, though, because some relatives found out that Johnny was related to Mr. Lyte, so Johnny would be able to live comfortably for the rest of his life.

Weschester Case

1750 words - 7 pages . Moon. The letter stated that such “information was absolutely untrue” and that Mr. Moon returned the beer in order to avoid unfair prejudice to Mr. Mario and Mr. Pavlov, the two employees who sold him the beer. At the conclusion of the letter, Mr. Moon requested a refund of his purchase price. Upon investigating the situation, Vince Patton, found that the two employees, Mr. Mario and Mr. Pavlov were involved in bribing Mr. Moon with a kickback

Jumper664

856 words - 4 pages The Rocking-horse Winner By D.H. Lawrence Before-reading strategies: This story is a required read based on the course that I am taking. I am familiar with the author as I have read two other pieces that he has published while I was in high school. He is considered a visionary thinker for his time, however criticized for his work while alive. The descriptive wording is challenging due to the era in which it was written. Much of the

The Rocking-Horse Winner

4457 words - 18 pages . Later, when Creswell takes Paul for a ride through the countryside to his home in Hampshire, he asks the boy for advice on which horse to bet on in the Lincoln race. Paul recommends Daffodil.  .......“What about Mirza?”   .......Paul says, “I only know the winner.”  .......When he began gambling, Paul says, he lost five shillings Basset had given him. Then he started winning with ten shillings from Uncle Oscar and concluded that his uncle had

Rebecca Analysis

938 words - 4 pages in her identity. She tries to stick up for herself, but her words have no effect on her cruel, manipulative, controlling husband, Mr. de Winter. Mr. de Winter appears as a gentleman in the very early chapters of the book; however, the reader soon discovers that Mr. de Winter seems not to care about other people’s feelings, and that he contains controlling characteristics. Besides being controlling, he also verbally abuses his wife. In simple and

Gulliver's Travels

803 words - 4 pages . First sheacts flirtatiously, parading around the bewildered horse. But when thisdoes not have the desired effect, she gets another idea:"As I watched in amazement from my perch in the top of a tree, the sorrelnag dashed off and returned with a yahoo on her back who was yet moremonstrous than Mr. Pope being fitted by a clothier. She dropped thiscreature before my nag as if offering up a sacrifice. My horse sniffedthe creature and turned away." (145

Essay On My Greatest Accomplishment

857 words - 4 pages struck out 1,330 times. Thomas Edison performed more than 1,100 unsuccessful experiments before inventing the light bulb. He said, "I found out 1,100 ways how not to do things." Even the great racing horse Secretariat lost his first race. I can remember a time when I so desperately wanted to win, but I didn't. My sixth grade class was having a spelling bee. Every student had to stand at the front of the room with his or her own mini

"Silas Marner" Book Report, Summary On Each Chapter

5669 words - 23 pages man's." Mr. Macey, the parish clerk, suggested that Silas's soul was leaving his body to go with the devil. Even with all these rumors, Silas was never bothered because the townspeople feared him, and he was the only weaver in the village. Before Silas came to Raveloe he lived in a town to the north, where he was thought of as a young man "of exemplary life and ardent faith." This town was filled with religious people who met in a place called

the presidents of the usa

473 words - 2 pages George WashingtonWon unanimouslyFirst president to be inauguratedAdded so help me god to inauguration speechCame up with the title Mr. PresidentGets poisoned possibly anthraxVery tallAthleticHis horse was named nelsonWent to every state in the new unionGood at interior designing, fashionGood judge of characterHired very smart, well educated people into his cabinetHamilton was in charge of the money and created bankWashington has capitol named

Bernie Madoff

703 words - 3 pages with false filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission because he gave false records and information when enforcement officers were sent to his firm for compliance checks. Under civil law the government has filed to have Mr. Madoff asset frozen and asses to repay the billions of dollars lost to investors of his firms. REFERENCES BERNARD MADOFF. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved (2010, August 22) from http

Related Papers

Languistic Essay

1959 words - 8 pages former President of Havard, he said in his speech that the U.S. has to change its thinking and has to change its look at the world. Năm ngoái, trong một hội nghị của cựu học viên Đại học Harvard tại New Delhi, nguyên hiệu trưởng Đại học Harvard, ông Larry Summers có phát biểu đề cập đến một ý: Nước Mỹ cần thay đổi cách suy nghĩ và cách nhìn nhận về thế giới. Ha: Rule The class is divided into 4 groups. Each group is given 4 boxes of words

The Pursuit Of Luck Ultimately Leads To Death

1538 words - 7 pages and contrasted. One of which focuses on a son that wants to help his Mother with her financial problems, while the other begins with gathering stones on a sunny day in a town which uses the lottery to determine which person will be sacrificed to help the coming harvest Outline Title: “The Pursuit of Luck ultimately leads to Death” I. Introduction A. In what ways is The Lottery & The Rocking-Horse Winner Similar? B. In what ways is

The Red Pony Essay

663 words - 3 pages mother and to save the baby. Billy Buck saved thebaby and had killed the mother. Jody was sad, but knew that hehad to save the baby horse. This is what made Jody a man. Jody had became a man and he learned how to make desisionsin his life. He lost two of his best friends to death. Helearned how to deal with death of his loved ones. Jody alsolearned how to sacrifice a mother to save a baby. Jody became aman by learning how to handle death

Greeting In English And Vietnamese Essay

1617 words - 7 pages /kinship term + polite particle “ạ”  (Dạ)  (em)      chào   thầy   ạ.  Chào “hello” + title.     Chào bác  Title/ kinship term + ạ.   Ông ạ!  The unique feature in Vietnamese greetings is that a speaker can express his or her emotion toward an addressee through a politeness intensifier “ạ”.  - In addition, the phrases such as “xin kính chào”, “kính chào”, “chào mừng”, “nhiệt liệt chào mừng” … are commonly