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Public Talk - The Law Governing all Laws: Daoism and Happiness

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Find out about the Daoist views on laws leading to happiness and how these teachings are within everyone's reach.

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Do money, possessions, power and fame guarantee happiness? Probably not if we consider the well-being of many well-known celebrities. This begs further questions such as 'What is happiness?' and 'How do we lead a happy life?'. With many of us facing difficulties or suffering due to the pandemic, there is a broad sense that happiness is even further away and harder to define than before.

Laozi, founder of the philosophy known as Daoism, is widely respected by people in all walks of life in China. After more than 2,000 years, his philosophy is still important to Chinese people, heavily influencing their ways of thinking and dealing with challenges.

In this public talk, the speaker examines Laozi's belief in the duality of human nature and argues that we are not masters of our own feelings as we depend on laws governing happiness as we strive to achieve it. He does this by exploring Laozi's Dao both from its cosmic aspect, and personally, as it relates to human beings and the fact that the application of Laozi’s teachings is within everyone's reach.

Short bio of the speaker:

Manuel Parreno lived with his family in various countries as a student. He graduated at Brigham Young University-Hawaii with a minor in Chinese language and a BA in Political Science. He graduated with a three-year master’s degree in Chinese philosophy from Xiangtan University (2011-2014). Prior to moving to the UK Manuel worked as an intern in Brussels doing research and public relations at the EU Office of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and as an assistant in the management office of First Law International. In 2016 Manuel moved to the UK where he now lives with his family. He is founder of Embrace China Ltd., a company offering placements for teaching English in Hunan, China. Along with his love of China and for teaching, Manuel is also a speaker on Chinese philosophy, with publications in the Journal of Daoist Studies, Sinología Hispánica and China Studies Review.

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