“People are just as wonderful as sunsets if you let them be. When I look at a sunset, I don't find myself saying, "Soften the orange a bit on the right hand corner." I don't try to control a sunset. I watch with awe as it unfolds.” (Carl Rogers)

Monday, 30 June 2014

June 30th #chinadiary

Another long gap to catch up with today - I'm glad that Carl was too busy experiencing to keep such a writing routine as he'd intended!

Guangxiao Temple Flower Pagoda
He relates his visit to 'model city' of Nantunchow and especially the pagoda on Langshan (Guangxiao now, I think).

He is also surely glad he went to the Chinese theatre, something he'd been wanting to do for a while. The costumes were "simply gorgeous, and the interest depended not so much on the plot as on the grace of the actors, the beautiful dances, and the splendid costuming" - the finale was a spirit dance that "I don't think I will ever forget".

The next morning saw a river trip to Nanking and the missionary work of Mr Magee, who is "doing the only Christian work that is being done in that dirty hell-hole mushroom port city".

The afternoon saw the party do something that Carl had been wanting to do for a long time, "see some real country mission work" - which seems to involve travelling to rural areas, leaving Christian leaflets around and talking t locals "not in any preachy way, but just conversationally, and reducing his remarks to a level they could understand." I'm struck not only by how patronising that sounds, but how much Carl seems to concur with that idea and with the idea of selling the Western god to the natives. His later revolutionary view of human being is not much in evidence yet at this point in his travels, exemplified by a later statement: "It is an astonishing fact that out here, almost two thirds of the time, you can tell a Christian simply by looking at this face."

2 comments:

  1. Wow hard to see /hear/experience the CR I/we have come to know and love in his somewhat separated, de-parted .conditioned Christian view of the world. I wonder what "view" the persons working in the hell-hole mushroom port city held? My guess is if they were Taoists or Buddhists they probably stood more of a chance of working in mushroom port city without dividing mushroom port into a heaven or hell hole :O) Thank whoever that CR was OPEN to growing through this rather limiting world view...

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  2. Thank Carl Rogers, I should think! Anyway, beautifully put :-)

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