I argue that continental philosophical resources are more appropriate for comparative philosophy regarding classical Daoism since they in various ways challenge the dominant metaphysical orientation of Western thought and give us a better and more appropriate vocabulary to make sense of important Daoist ideas within the confines of Western languages. Since classical Daoism is largely non-metaphysical or at least not metaphysical in the same way as the Western history of philosophy is, it makes sense that those within the Western tradition who have sought to displace the dominant metaphysical tradition would be more in tune with such non-metaphysical considerations. I focus on Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Derrida and present three interrelated areas of comparison with classical Daoism. First, I discuss the constant complication of any seriously dualist approach and with that the attempt to put humans in a constructive and primarily interdependent relationship with the rest of the world, which points to a form of process philosophy. Second, I focus on ideas regarding the use and limitations of language that both traditions display, and on the resulting efforts to understand language differently. Lastly, I present the decentering of the subject or the self is another feature prominent in both Daoism and the continental thinkers, although in different ways.
Asian Studies | Philosophy
Journal of Daoist Studies
Three Pines Press
BURIK, Steven.(2016). Comparative Resources: Continental Philosophy and Daoism. Journal of Daoist Studies, 9, 18-48.
Available at: http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/soss_research/1877
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.