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Hua Hu Ching: The Unknown Teachings of Lao Tzu Paperback – August 4, 2009

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: HarperOne (August 4, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060692456
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060692452
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 4.8 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #69,930 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Chinese --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

What a beautiful and important little book.
J. Brad Davis
If you are interested in the I Ching or the Tao te Ching (or both) -- give yourself a great gift like Brian Browne Walker's translation of any of these texts.
Lisbeth West
Apparently prose lacks a bit in the transfer.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

44 of 47 people found the following review helpful By tepi on June 28, 2001
Format: Paperback
HUA HU CHING : The Unknown Teachings of Lao Tzu. By Brian Walker. 108 pp. San Francisco : Harper, 1995. ISBN 0060692456 (pbk.)
Anyone who has read Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu will find much that is familiar in this book. They will also find much that is strikingly new and different, so much so that one doubts very much that this book could have been written by Lao Tzu (always supposing that such a person actually existed). The book seems fairly obviously to be the work of much later thinkers, which isn't to say we should dismiss it because of that.
Although certain of its ideas are, in terms of philosophic Taoism, perfectly orthodox, others are highly unorthodox, but ALL are beautifully expressed. Brian Walker has a wonderfully lucid style, and despite the unorthodoxy of certain passages, it seems to me that a book like this can only do good.
It brings to the West a wisdom that many more people would benefit from being exposed to, and for a certain kind of reader it might prove more approachable than even Stephen Mitchell's marvelous reworking and adaptation of the 'Tao Te Ching.'
Although I can understand the objections of the purists, I don't seen any harm being done, particularly if newcomers were to follow it up with a reading of either, or preferably both, the 'Tao Te Ching' and Chuang Tzu.
Chapter 10 immediately caught my attention. Here is the opening with my obliques to indicate line breaks:
"The ego is a monkey catapulting through the jungle : / Totally fascinated by the realm of the senses, / it swings from one desire to the next, / one conflict to the next. / If you threaten it, it actually fears for its life. // Let this monkey go..." (p.13).
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Anyechka on September 19, 2004
Format: Paperback
I was really excited when I found this book in late 1999, since I loved the Tao Te Ching and Lao-Tzu's simple, beautiful, timeless wisdom. Finding this slim volume of his allegedly long-suppressed additional sayings was like the icing on the cake for me in my love of Taoist philosophy. And the first chapters are really nice, with the types of sentiments you expect from the master, like "To embrace all things means first that one holds no anger or resistance toward any idea or thing, living or dead, formed or formless," "If your willingness to give blessings is limited, so also is your ability to receive them," and (my fave) "The ego is a monkey catapulting through the jungle." As another reviewer pointed out but which I didn't realise at the time, it sure sounds like Lao-Tzu, but it's a bit wordier than most of what he expressed in the Tao Te Ching. Still, it sounds like his voice regardless of how wordy it is. Later on it really gets into things like medicine, the names of ancient masters, angelic intercourse, science, the kinds of stuff that didn't appear at all in the Tao Te Ching. It just wasn't as poetic, though I found the insights into ancient Chinese philosophy and science fascinating. I also don't like how the text is arranged in this edition. My edition of the Tao Te Ching is the only Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English one, where it's arranged like a beautiful freeverse poem. In the Walker edition of the Hua Hu Ching, every line of text is arranged like a line in a book. It doesn't seem nearly as poetic; would it have hurt to break some of the lines up mid-sentence like Feng and English did?

Finding out this book is in all likelihood a forgery which was originally designed to create bad blood between both Buddhists and Taoists actually explains a lot.
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56 of 73 people found the following review helpful By Jon Zuck on May 18, 2003
Format: Paperback
I starting reading this when I got home, and something seemed off. Turns out that they laugh about this book on Taoist discussion boards. Hua Hu Ching was a forgery in the 8th century CE. The intent was to convert western Chinese Buddhists to Taoism by presenting Lao Tzu as teaching Buddhist thought in China before Buddha's Enlightenment. The earlier chapters have a rather Buddhist feel, which turns into a "Religious Taoist" feel in the later chapters with discussions on magic, Feng Shui, "angelic" sex, and the need to worship the 64 I Ching hexagrams!

It was responsible for some tremendous bad blood between Buddhists and Taoists, and was eventually ordered destroyed by an emperor in the 14th century. Apparently, at least a handful of Taoists believe in it and have kept it alive via oral tradition.

The first several chapters are beautiful, insightful, and poetic, though a bit wordy for Lao Tzu. for instance, "Division is contrary to the nature of the Tao. / Foregoing antagonism and separation, one enters into the harmonious oneness of all things." (3)

However, after Chapter 50, things go rapidly downhill, I mean falling-off-a-cliff downhill, with bizarre New-Age flavored droppings such as "Because yin and yang are not complete within us as individuals, we pair up to integrate them and bring forth new life./ Although most people spend their entire lives following this biological impulse, it is only a tiny portion of our beings as well. / If we remain obsessed with seeds and eggs, we are married to the fertile reproductive valley of the Mysterious Mother but not to her immeasurable heart and all-knowing mind." (65) Sounds just like Lao Tzu, right?

Or how about this?
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