Tuesday, November 10, 2015


The words Life is a Dream, and Chuang Tzu’s dream in particular, have been on my mind lately because I’m coming across references to Calderón’s play of that name in my reading. 

Whitehead said all of western philosophy is a footnote to Plato. It’s equally true of western religion, because what westerners call religion is merely a cruder form of what they used to call philosophy. 

Educated Easterners have known for some time that what we call reality is an illusion. Westerners are relatively new to the game of philosophy; therefore, like Chuang Tzu, they haven't yet figured out which is which.  

Whether they call themselves secular or religious, educated westerners have followed Plato in believing this world of change, which to the uneducated seems real, is an illusion. Educated westerners agree that the real world is changeless and eternal. 

Plato’s world of ideal forms became western science’s world of numbers and western religion’s heaven. His prime mover unmoved was given a name and face and became a god. 

Gods, for educated Hindus, are names of the unnameable, faces of the faceless void. The Buddha, being educated, was agnostic. Only ignorant Easterners, and Westerners, reify ideas.         

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