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About the Author

Ron Hogan has been an industry analyst for a media website, a digital marketing director for a publishing house, a freelance book reviewer, and an acquiring editor for a startup book publisher. He is the founder of the literary site Beatrice, and creator of a popular newsletter about developing mostrar mais your writing practice, "Destroy Your Safe and Happy Lives." mostrar menos
Image credit: Ron Hogan with Xena and Zelda,
models for Archaic comics at
the San Diego Comic Con 2006
Copyright © 2006 Ron Hogan

Obras por Ron Hogan

Associated Works

Subterranean Magazine, Issue #4 (Spring 2006) (2006) — Contribuidor — 12 exemplares


Conhecimento Comum




I try to read a different translation of the Tao Te Ching each year. This version can't be called a translation so much as an interpretation, an interpretation the author believes will resonate more with 21st century Americans. An example:

Stephen Mitchell's translation of section 1:
The tao that can be told
is not the eternal Tao.
The name that can be named
is not the eternal Name.
The unnameable is the eternally real.
Naming is the origin of
all particular things.
Free from desire, you realize the mystery.
Caught in desire, you see only the manifestations.
Yet mystery and manifestations
arise from the same source.
The source is called darkness.
Darkness within darkness.
The gateway to all understanding.

Hogan interprets section 1 in this way:
If you can talk about it,
it ain't Tao.
If it has a name, it's just another thing.
Tao doesn't have a name.
Names are for ordinary things.
Stop wanting stuff, it keeps you from seeing what's real.
When you want stuff, all you see are things.
Those two sentences mean the same thing.
Figure them out, and you've got it made.

While I admire the ambition of Hogan's project, I don't quite care for the execution. With the occasional curse word and folksy phony-feeling ain'ts, too much of the author shows through, which sort of misses the point of the Tao Te Ching.

… (mais)
rumbledethumps | 1 outra crítica | Mar 23, 2021 |
I've been reading the TTC in various translations since about 1979. My favourite remains the Gia Fu Feng and Jane English one, but I think that the spirit of this one is as good and probably the version I'd like to have written myself.
jolyonpatten | 1 outra crítica | Dec 15, 2011 |

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