Reviews

Review of Sung: Chinese Mystical Philosophy in Modern Terms

This appendix is attributed to Herbert Chatley as an extract from "The China Journal of Science and Arts".

The following quote is of interest (p131):

"It need scarcely be said that many erudite Chinese have held that their philosophers have anticipated Western science in all essential respects. The author fears that this is an entirely unwarranted generalization. The most that can fairly be said is that certain of the Chinese ancients were well on the way towards making good guesses as to the inner nature of things..."
I think this is a little unfair in that I think these systems of thought are more than merely guesses. We cannot now know, but it seems that much Chinese thought is born from a systematically developed view of the structure of the perceived world. Although it was not, by contemporary western standards, good "scientific" investigation, it was clearly more than guess work.