The Seven Emotions

While preparing the text of The Seven Emotions for a new print run, I came across some Father Larre gems… This, at the beginning of the book, gives a beautiful introduction to the use of Chinese characters throughout the text.

Claude Larre: An aspect of our teaching will be the etymology of characters, because if we are speaking in English without reference to Chinese, the etymology is of the essence. What we want to convey in the minds of those who are listening to us is the Chinese text. The difficulty is to speak Chinese using English words. If we write a few Chinese characters it is not to impress you with our knowledge of Chinese, it is because through the different strokes something is built, which is not a word, but a symbol which opens your mind. You must set free your imagination. 

There is a sort of artistic and aesthetic understanding of things which is necessary to enter the Chinese field of terminology. So using numerology, using Chinese characters, referring to etymology, comparing this and that to social life, political life, organization of human groups, all of that gives us clues to the understanding of Chinese medicine, because there is no difference in the Chinese mind between the well organized political body and the human body of each of us.

And later:

The problem with the way we think about emotions is that we believe serenity is the lack of emotions. That is not the case. Serenity is not being disturbed by emotions. Or if we are disturbed, it is to be able to come back to ourselves immediately. In treating people we are not supposed to ask them to be emotionless, or not to be taken over by emotions, but just as far as possible to be able to come back to a state where the emotion will be felt inside their quietness.

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