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Culture, Philosophy, and Chinese Medicine

Viennese Lectures

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Fengli Lan

Chinese medicine is a culturally dependent art of healing deeply rooted in the culture and philosophy of the country it originated from: China. This book has three independent but progressive parts, each bearing the title of one of the three courses taught by the author as a visiting professor at the Faculty of Philosophy, Vienna University, in the 2010-2011 winter semester, namely: Overview of Chinese Culture through Chinese Characters, Fundamental Concepts of Classical Chinese Philosophy and The Importance of Metaphors in Chinese Medicine, which are in the fields of philosophy of language, philosophy of science, and intercultural philosophy, aiming to reveal the essence of philosophy of Chinese language, classical Chinese philosophy and Chinese medicine within the context of a global, multicultural background. This book sums up the author’s research outcome of the last few years in an area of study on culture, philosophy and Chinese medicine which has been too often misunderstood or insufficiently emphasized.

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List of Tables……………………………………………………………………11 List of Illustrations………………………………………………………...……..13 Author's Foreword………………………………………………………………..15 I Overview of Chinese Culture through Chinese Characters Introduction……………………..…………………….…………………….……18 1 Etymology: Six Categories of Chinese Graphs…………………….………..…21 1.1 Pictographs: Xiang Xing䈵ᔶ………………………………………………23 1.2 Ideographs: Zhi Shi ᣛџ……………………………………………………24 1.3 Associative Compounds: Hui Yi Ӯᛣ………………………………………25 1.4 Signific-Phonetics: Xing Sheng ᔶໄ…………………………………….…27 1.5 Mutually Interpretive: Zhuang Zhu䕀⊼…………………………….………29 1.6 Loan Sinograms: Jia Jie ؛׳…………………………………………….....29 2 Evolution of the Scripts: From Oracle-Bone Inscription to Regular Script……31 2.1 Oracle-Bone Inscription: Jia Gu Wen ⬆偼᭛………………………………31 2.2 Bronze Inscription: Jin Wen 䞥᭛…………………………………………...32 2.3 Larger Seal Script: Da Zhuan໻㆚………………………………………..…32 2.4 Lesser Seal Script: Xiao Zhuan ᇣ㆚……………………………………..…33 2.5 Simplified Lesser Seal Script: Li Shu 䲊к, Official Script in the Han Dynasty………………………………………………………………………..…33 2.6 Cursive Script: Cao Shu 㤝к……………………………………………….33 2.7 Regular Script: Kai Shu Ὃк……………………………………….………33 2.8 Running Hand: Xing Shu 㸠к……………………………………..……….35 3 Classical Chinese Thinking Ways Residing in Chinese Characters……..…….39 3.1 Man and Universe Uniting and Resembling Each Other: Tian Ren He Yi…...39 3.2 Imaging Thinking: Xiang 䈵………………………………………………...40 3.3 Balanced & Symmetrical Thinking: Yin-Yang 䰈䰇………………………..42 3.4 Squared Shaped Sinograms, Four Directions, and Five Phases……………...44 3.5 Being Conservative: Venerating Classics and Worshiping History………….45 4 The Prospect of Chinese Characters………………...………………………….47 4.1 Combining Signific with Phonetic: The Basic Sinogram-Creating Method…47 4.2 Being Conservative: Venerating Classics and Worshiping History………….48 6 4.3 Chinese Culture: the Most Advanced and the Leading One of All in the History of China………………………………………..…………………….48 4.4 No Access to Other Better Choices…………………………………………..50 4.5 Understanding Chinese Characters: A Historical Outline………………...….51 5 Western...

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