Comparison Of Joseph Campbell And Lao Tzu

Submitted By Blastermister
Words: 1104
Pages: 5

Drover 1
Joshua Drover
Mrs. Pino
Wednesday, December 3, 2013
Philosophers-Part 2 Joseph Campbell and Lao Tzu both share interesting philosophies that share many of the same concepts. Joseph, who had created the concept of the hero’s journey, talks about what it takes to make one happy and to follow your bliss. Lao, who was a Chinese philosopher and the creator of Chinese Taoism which is studied today, also shares the same concepts as it is a religion that focuses on the concept of making a human being happy and finding our purposes in life. Both Joseph and Lao have created and philosophised on the fact that for humans to find what they want, they must listen to their being, then they will find there purpose and their happiness. However, there are some differences as well that they both share that will be discussed throughout this essay. Joseph Campbell is a well-renowned philosopher that is discussed in modern day philosophy. He had created the philosophy that everyone has a purpose and a calling towards this purpose. However, most people have ignored this calling and, in term, do not find their purpose. Joseph had said, “Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls” (Campbell). This quote implies that if one follows what one must do and follows their hero’s journey, then the possibilities that one can do will be endless. Furthermore, this is what one would think the truth of the world itself indeed is. This is due to the fact most people are programmed to a society where we do what we
Drover 2 must do to live, but we do not do what we must to be happy. “I think the person who takes a job in order to live - that is to say, for the money - has turned himself into a slave” (Campbell). Needless to say, the philosophy does in fact relate to Lao. Lao-Tzu was actually three philosophers that had transferred and expanded on eachs’ individual’s philosophy. The philosophy that the three philosophers had discovered was that of Taoism where Taoism (or Daoism) is a philosophical, ethical, and religious tradition of Chinese origin that emphasizes living in harmony with the Tao. However, it does also tell people to live their life by what their own purposes are as Lao had said, “Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step” (Tzu). Basically, Lao had said that instead of waiting to do things and procrastinating, do them while you can for that is what must be done to begin ones life. So, to begin ones life is to start ones purpose and to do the things they know in their heart they must. Lao had also said, “If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading” (Tzu). This also expands on the comments before as if you do not change your direction onto the path you must take or want, then you will never go onto that path that is set for you. The similarities of these two philosophers are that of ones own purpose. Joseph and both Lao had stated concepts of finding ones happiness through their own journeys. Joseph had stated it through the act of ones own hero’s journey where if you find the purpose and hear the calling, you will have happiness throughout your life. In comparison, Lao’s philosophy is connected as he did mention that to find happiness if you are not

Drover 3 already happy, then you must change what you do and follow a different path. Joseph had also mentioned a calling, where he said that if you ignore the calling, then your life will always be the same and it will feel like you are enslaved to the world. This was very similar to what Lao had said, as if we were to not change our direction, then we will not head anywhere. The differences in both of their philosophies are also prominent. First, Joseph mainly focuses on ones purpose in life and finding happiness within ones self. However, Lao talks about some concepts of ones main purpose, but