on 16 October 1998
Evidence abounds that Taoism, at long last, is attracting the serious attention that it deserves, and that it is only a matter of time before it takes its place among the major Eastern religions which, in the last century, have put down roots in the West. If ever there was a need for a sober, disciplined approach to the subject, it is now. And Professor Saso's has admirably risen to the occasion in this work. There is little here to appeal to the dilettante, or to the commercial purveyor of New-Age erotic fantasy. What the reader will come away with is a new appreciation for and deeper understanding of a religion which antedates Christianity and is at least as old as Buddhism --- a religion which speaks to aspirations and concerns of a humanity which has seemingly lost its way. Readers who are shopping for yet another source of distraction or amusement are well advised not to be detained by this book. But for the reader who is looking for a single, level-headed introduction to Taoism, "The Gold Pavilion" will be an indispensable addition to his/her library.
on 20 October 1998
I've been studying Taoism and Taoist methods for a while now, but have always sensed that I was missing "something". Somehow, I knew I just wasn't getting the whole picture. Prof. Saso's book has taken me closer to seeing what Taoism really is than I'd ever expected to be taken. As a companion book to the Laozi(Tao Te Ching) and Zhuangzi(Chuang-Tzu), I'd say "The Gold Pavilion" is indispensible. I've learned that those beautiful, yet frustrating ancient texts are speaking as much to the internal self as to the external world. This is Taoism the way the Asian practitioners see it, and they've been following the Way for a couple thousand years. Need I say, "Highly Recommended"?