Qing – Embracing a Complexity of Human Emotions
The western and eastern civilizations differ in the perception of the concept of passion and emotions. In America and developed European countries people cultivate their wishes, desires and joys. Overconsumption leads to fake value of things and pleasures, increase of violence and the loss of spirituality in humans. Search for financial freedom turns people into slaves of their greed and addictions.
Eastern philosophy of the later periods implies the development of fair society with the strong adherence to ritual and customs. The right way lays through the belonging to nature and the balance of Yin and Yang. Chinese civilization differs in the conceptual vision of pleasure and human joys. Passion is believed wasteful and harmful and people avoid showing their emotions openly. However, it implies that emotions exist but suppressed.
An ancient Chinese philosopher Zhuangzi offers a conceptually different vision on the freedom and genuine way. He suggests the complete denial from earthy worries and desires. The paper analyzes the Zhuangzi and Dao de Jing philosophic approach to emotions. Qing is the way to harmony that goes through the embracing and coping with the constantly growing and never satisfied wishes. It suggests the complete rejection from emotions.
How Do People Deal With Their Emotions?
In the modern constantly changing world the spectrum of human emotions is complex and varied. There is a general division on positive and negative emotions. People in the Western world cultivate sensitivity and artistic refinement of the beauty in human relationships. They would rather complicate than simplify their feelings. However, such complexity can cause numerous deviations from the clear contemplation and perception of the reality.
On the one hand, emotions are unavoidable and welcome to make the human life brighter. On the other hand, it is crucial to be coping with them in a productive way. People often lack the ability to reflect from their traumatic negative feelings of anger or irritation. This way, they indulge themselves into the irrecoverable circumstances and diseases.
The passion can be characterized as a strong desire for anything or anyone. The person in the passion misses harmonious alignment in all areas of life, because of the level of fascination that can border on the insanity. The object of desire brings joy and pleasure only at the moment of interaction. It considerably shortens the number of possible happy moments. The person who often relies on emotions often deprives oneself of the opportunities and new choices in life.
What Is The Art Of Coping?
Ancient Chinese Civilization is one of the oldest on the planet. Its basic concepts are in the unity of opposites of Yang and Yin. “Is and Isn’t produce each other”. Yang represents masculine, active principle through the energy of sky, day, light and heat. Yin is the feminine, passive nature revealed in Earth, night, darkness and coldness. The interaction of opposing forces creates basic natural elements namely water, fire, soil, metal and wood. According to Dao de Jing the emotional balance can be found only in harmonic co-existence of the oppositions.
Qing implies the ability of resistance to the temptations of life. Everyone has a choice of opposing the harmonious flow of life or following it. A wise man does not aspire to power, numerous love affairs, luxury and extravagance. “A wise warrior is never angry”.
According to the Chinese philosophy, passion is one of the worst enemies on the way to Dao, and Dao is the mysterious destination of any human soul, the upper force that embraces everything. Involvement into constant emotions prevents people from acquiring clear consciousness and living in harmony.
The capture of the passion is the life long task, and, at the same time, it is the most meaningful way a person can go through. Revelations can hardly come in through the experience of pride, vanity, gluttony, love of sexual pleasures and frequent change of partners or love for money. Such feelings become the imposition of restrictions such as sacrifice, sadness, depression and torturing oneself physically and emotionally. Zhuangzi says that “The perfect man has no Self; the holy man has no merit; the sage has no fame”. So, it might be suggested that the art of coping with emotions is in rejection from them.
Why Are Emotions Embedded In Human Physiology?
Emotions are responsible for the energy circulation in human organism. They send impulses and make people super active and resistant or just kill from inside. Anger and irritation are the cause of many diseases. Energy of irritation can penetrate into the lungs. If not promptly withdraw from the organ, it can provoke accumulation of fluid in the pleural cavity, and this is a direct threat to human life.
The philosophy of Zhuanzgi might object that the fear of death is the misleading emotion in itself. He puts a rhetorical question of the effort and worrying in the whole, if the human end on the earth is unavoidably the same. He refuses reflecting on fears and following one’s wishes for those on the way to the perception of Dao. All diseases are the result of inner disharmony and antagonism with evil feelings
Some people do not show anger. They restrain negative emotions, thus creating a hidden irritation, getting depressed by energy of anger. In this case, following the same logic of physiological dependence on the emotions, energy descends irritation.
If a person is at a high level of energy equilibrium, the attack power of irritation will create the resistant forces in an organism that will help to combat the destructive energy. If the human body has low energy equilibrium it has no opportunity to produce shelter in a short period of time. When a person is constantly irritated and in a cycle of negative impacts, when the suppression of irritation becomes a habit, it can cause cancer. People suffering from this disease, share a common characteristic: they have long amassed a frustration and anger, and could not get rid of it. The treatment is designed to give patients a chance to change their approach to life and the attitude towards people.
The above example is the manifestation of the affect of negative emotions in life.
The ability to recognize them helps to develop the inner balance and, above all, the balance of the mind and emotions. With equilibrium inside anyone looks calm and satisfied. The modern western world encourages passion while the traditional Chinese philosophy presents it as a negative feature and even the disease that some people do not recognize. Indeed, strong internal sufferings force to think about the harm of emotional diversity and negative effect on physiology.
The Ways Of Emotional Equilibrium Maintenance
The way to the balanced life lies through the rejection from one’s Self. “The Self embodies distress. No self – no distress”. Any passionate impulse is an automatic reaction of a person on the impulses coming from the outside. Such reactions can lead to resentment, guilt, undesirable anger, hysterical laughter, indecision and inaction, apathy and hopelessness. In other words, they lead to the antagonism of Yang and Yin. Emotions are very different, but they all appear quite spontaneously, in response to what is happening. The man is so accustomed to such spontaneity and randomness that even begins to consider it the part of genuine desires and feelings.
The true overcoming of negative emotions is not in the knowledge about the evils of human nature and passion addictions, but in the ability to combat the appearing emotions in the situation of temptation or some visible object of passion. When the impulse comes, and the person remains inactive and balanced there appears chance for the finding the true way. The ability to remain calm and with clear mind can be a result of deep inner reconsideration of the personal life values, fears and expectations. Not restraining but meeting emotions and reactions from outward environment with calm consciousness is the way to coming on a new level on the way to self-realization and increase of vital energy.
Zhuanzgi saw the endless source of energy in humor. Many of his fables reveal the situations where man laughs at his prior worries and concerns. At the same time, the philosopher shows that neither good, nor bad emotions are productive. They are just passing momentum that leads to nowhere. Humor helps in Revealing the strain, caused by emotions, and becomes a source of inner equilibrium and strength.
Ancient Chinese philosophers Laozi in the book Dao de Jing and Zhungzi reveal the endless and bottomless presence of upper force in human life. The mysterious texts left by these authors imply that people guided by emotions are on the wrong way leading to nowhere. Focusing on the complexity and variety of emotions cultivates sufferings and violence. This western approach turns out to be ruinous, non-productive and wasteful. The vision of the Chinese philosophers acquires new importance and popularity for more and more people from the western civilization because it helps in reaching mind equilibrium and piece. Dao Philosophy teaches that any emotions are harmful, because they lead to creation of the connections and affections in life. The perception of Dao is possible through the denial from any human joys and material wishes. It might sound too radical for a western man, but such approach reveals the wisdom of contemplating way of existence. The closer acquaintance with the traditional Chinese concept of Qing allows the coping and embracing of the automated fake emotions and leads to the revelation and meeting one’s real self.