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Preety_India

Ancient Self Development Methods Tao

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In this I'll be learning about the Tao 

 

 


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Problem of Evil in Taoism

Article 3, Volume 5, Issue 10, Summer and Autumn 2016, Page 35-47  PDF (442.89 K)

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

Qorban Elmi  ; Mojtaba Zarvani

Associate Professor of Religions and Mysticism, University of Tehran, Iran

Abstract

This paper attempts to present the Taoist understanding of evil. In the Taoist tradition, especially in Tao Te Ching, evil is divided into two categories: causal evil and consequential evil. Causal evils are those evils that are said to be the causes of other evils; consequential evils are those that are said to be the consequences of the causal evils. Causal evils originate from human will, and cause suffering. This means that evil is not equal to suffering. Lao Tzu does not clearly talk about natural suffering. He regards all evil and suffering as resulting from human actions that are not in accordance with Tao, which is the source of all life. Therefore, the way to overcome evil is to follow Tao, to actualize wu-wei in life.

Keywords

The Problem of Evil; Taoism; Lao Tzu; Causal Evil; Consequent Evil

Full Text

Introduction

The problem of evil is an old problem that has baffled man since antiquity. The core of the problem is that the existence of evil seems to contradict the belief in the existence of God with His attributes of omnipotence, omniscience, and absolute goodness. Thus, although every worldview has to explain the existence of evil, it is an especially acute problem for theism, because—unlike atheism that affirms the reality of evil but denies the reality of God, and unlike Pantheism that affirms the reality of God but denies the reality of evil—theism affirms the reality of both God and evil.

Religious traditions are important sources for thinking about evil. Among them we can mention Taoism. Taoism is a spiritual, philosophical, and religious tradition of Chinese origin that provides special insights the problem of evil. In this paper, we will attempt to review these insights and present a fuller picture of the Taoist understanding of evil.

Taoism

First, we must have a brief overview of Taoism and the its developmental. Taoism has different meanings for different minds. “It is undoubtedly the most incompletely known and most poorly understood philosophy” (Kirkland, Barret, and Kohn 2000, xi). The confusion, I think, comes from mistranslation of the word “Tao.” Tao is the main theme of Taoism, but since Northeastern Asians have used it in many different cultural contexts, the word has been used differently in everyday life. Therefore, given that there are no clear boundaries in the different practices of Taoism, according to Creel, “the more one studies Taoism, the clearer it becomes that this term does not denote a school, but a whole congeries of doctrines” (1970, 1).

Taoism, which emerged in the 6th century B.C., is one of the two great native Chinese religio-philosophical systems and a major influence in the development of Chinese culture. The goal of Taoism as a philosophy and religious tradition, as expressed in the Tao Te Ching of Lao Tzu, the Chuang Tzu, and the Lieh Tzu is a profound, joyful, mystical, and practical harmony with the universe. Taoism is regarded as “the philosophy of ‘Lao and Chuang’” (Lin 1976, 7). 
As Needham, one of the Taoist scholars says, “the Taoists were deeply interested in Nature but mistrusted reason and logic” (1956, 163). 

Taoism is, in general, is a system of thought or philosophy or a form of wisdom to help one learn the way and practice it. According to Blofeld, “Taoism is an ancient method of human development and also a living manifestation of an antique way of life almost vanished from the world” (1978, v).

As a religion, Taoism emphasizes the alchemical relations between macrocosm and microcosm, seeking a formula for immortality by breath control, diet, exercises, sexual continence, or chemical elixirs.

The word Taoism, pronounced like Daoism, comes from a Chinese character Tao, which means the way.   The way is usually further defined as the way of the ultimate reality, the way of the universe, the way of human life, and the way of nature.   The main idea of Taoism is to live naturally with the flow of life.   Living naturally comes about through observing the nature to learn the wisdom of life.   The wisdom of life includes not forcing or controlling life, but simply being there. One of the characteristics of Taoism is Wu wi.   Wu wi is the principle that the natural human mind is non-conceptual and not human-oriented.   Wu wi looks through and beyond the human realm and our conditioned existence to see and hear the nature’s point of view.   Blofeld’s view of a dedicated Taoist isone who seeks to live as closely as possible in accord with the nature.   From the outset, this involves contemplating the nature’s ways, recognizing their fitness, and the perception that all of them are good in the sense of being essential to the pattern as a whole (1978,  6).

In the world, Taoism is known through the books Tao Te Ching and Chuang-Tzu.   The authorship and the year these books were published is still debatable, but the Tao Te Ching of Lao-Tzu is typically dated around the 4th century B.C., whereas Chang-Tzu is thought to have been written in the third century B.C.   These two books are collections of Taoist writings and stories, though Taoism was practiced long before these books were written.

The Tao is the source of all things. It is the fundamental truth of the universe, and as such, it is a non-conceptual and inexpressible experience. It is important to realize that if you conceptualize and think about the Tao, you only move farther away from what it actually is.   The Tao is realized by being it. These expressions are esoteric and leave us wondering.

As Lao Tzu comments in Tao Te Ching (1980,ch. 40), “Ten thousand things under heaven are born of being (yu).  Being is born of non-being (wu).”  For Lao Tzu, non-being is the ontological basis of being, and non-action is the ethical basis of action.  Non-being in Taoism is not a negation of being, but rather the possibility of being.  As the ground of being, non-being has the returning movement.  Here, returning or reversal movement is identified with the unity of all beings in Tao.  

Metaphysically, in Taoism, non-being, as the ground, is the ontological expression of wu-wei. Thus, the undifferentiated or unlimited non-being is called the supreme good in Taoist metaphysics. Also wu-wei, as Tao’saction, has the spontaneity. From this understanding of wu-wei, one knows that there are two outstanding attributes of the Tao—that is, the source of being or life and the principle of spontaneity (tzu-jan).

Wu-wei is the Tao’sway of returning or unity. In itsmovement, the Tao has procreated all beings through its creative process.  Every growth and multiplicity comes from its creativity.  But the completion of the Tao’s procreation is done in the Tao’s returning movement, receptivity. Wu-wei is a negative way or a passive way.  But by taking a negative nay (wu-wei), the Tao comes to have the positive action, “spontaneity.”  Just as the reality has two elements: yin and yang, the Tao’smovement has two directions: creativity and receptivity. Lao Tzu saw the evolutionary process of creation in the Tao’s creative process, and its completion in the Tao’sreceptive process. 

Meaning of Evil

As a definition that can help us identify the evils discussed in the Tao Te Ching, we can say that evils are those things, events, or actions that are either condemned by Lao Tzu, or have to be avoided according to him. This is based on the assumption that only evils are to be condemned or avoided. It does not mean, however, that, in Lao Tzu's view, things are evil simply because they are to be condemned or avoided (Sung-Peng Hsu 1976, 301).

For Lao Tzu, good means any action that is not caused by the artificial actions of the human beings.  Non-artificial actions are spontaneous actions (wu-wei). On the contrary, “evil” means any action that is caused by the purposeful action of the human being.  Willful or purposeful actions are unspontaneous actions (yu-wei).

What is the origin of evil?  How and why does evil occur?  What is the Taoist concept of evil?  Lao Tzu does not articulate his answers to these questions clearly or directly, but his metaphysics of the Taoprovides the theoretical ground with which to deal with those questions. 

Origin of Evil

Where does evil come from? Cosmological1y or cosmogonical1y, evil comes from the process of differentiation or separation.  As examined in part I, the Tao has the bipolarity in its metaphysical structure: yin and yang.  In Tao Te Ching (1988, ch. 42), Lao Tzu says,

Taogives birth to one,

one gives birth to two,

two gives birth to three,

three gives birth to ten thousand beings.

Ten thousand beings carry yin on their backs and

embrace yang in their front.

Blending these two vital breaths (ch’ i)   to attain harmony.  

Here, yin and yang represent two directions or two movements of the Tao:   creativity and receptivity.  All things come from the blending of these two movements.  In the process of differentiation or procreation, the harmonious blending is called good, and the disharmonious is called evil.  Here, good and evil are relative, just as yin and yang arerelative.  Just as yin and yang are inevitable constituents of the reality, good and evil are also inevitable on the cosmological level.

The cosmological view is an aesthetic view.  Thus, good and evil, in a cosmological sense, are neutral in value judgment.  In the Taoist metaphysics, yin and yang are relative, reliable, dependable, and complementary to each other.  Thus, good and evil are relative, reliable, dependable, and complementary to each other and to the Taoas a whole.  In this aesthetic view, which is neutral in value, it is difficult to say that Lao Tzu was concerned with the natural evils.  In the same manner, whether there are natural sufferings in Lao Tzu’s thought is not an easy question to answer, partly because he does not explicitly and directly deal with this question.

Two Kinds of Evil

There are two kinds of evil. Evils that are caused by free human acts (moral evil) and those that are part of the nature (natural or physical evil).

Man-Made Evil or Moral Evil

Lao Tzu recognizes two kinds of man-made evils. The first kind is that which causes human sufferings in the world (causal evils). They supposedly originate in the use of the human will. The second kind of evil is the human sufferings caused by the first kind (consequential evils). It will be shown that Lao Tzu's philosophy of Tao is deeply concerned with eliminating these evils from the world.

The relationship between a causal evil and its consequential evil(s) can be a complex one, but Lao Tzu generally sees a simple and clear causal connection between them. I shall argue that all the causal evils that concern Lao Tzu originate in the use of the human will and that all the consequential evils are said to be sufferings of some kind. This means that not all evils are sufferings, because there are evils that are not sufferings in themselves but are the causes of sufferings (Sung-Peng Hsu 1976, 302).

Moreover, unlike causal evils, sufferings are not to be condemned or denounced. Lao Tzu may have taught that we should forgive people for their causal evils or to treat them in the all-embracing spirit of the Tao, but there is no doubt that causal evils are more evil than consequential evils (Sung-Peng Hsu 1976, 302).

As stated before, the causal evils supposedly originate in the use of the human will. On the assumption that all things produced by Tao are good, there is no good reason to say that the human will itself, presumably produced by Tao, is evil. But it is possible to say that the use of the will is the source of causal evils. Whether the distinction between the will itself and its use can be properly made will be left unanswered here. The important question we must ask is whether every use of the will is evil. This is not an easy question to answer. Generally speaking, we can say that the use of the will is evil if and only if it is used against one's true nature, the other people, or the natural world. In Lao Tzu’s language, the use of the will is evil if and only if it is used against the nature of the Tao and its operations in the universe.[1]We may call this use of the will the assertive use of the will. On the other hand, the use of the will is not evil if and only if it is used to resist asserting something in the way described above, or, more positively, if it is used to follow the Tao and its operations in the universe. We may call this the non-assertive use of the will (Sung-Peng Hsu 1976, 302).

 

Natural Sufferings

Whether there are natural sufferings in Lao Tzu's thought is not an easy question to answer, but it seems that In Lao Tzu's view, there are no natural sufferings. In other words, there cannot be any physical or mental pains in the universe where the assertive will is not operative. It means that all the sufferings in the world are supposedly man-made (Sung-Peng Hsu 1976, 307).

Lao Tzu repeatedly says that if we would only give up our assertive will, the cause of man-made sufferings, there would be no dangers, disasters, and so forth. It is likely that the dangers or disasters referred to are limited only to man-made sufferings. Moreover, he maintains that if we follow Tao, “all things will take their proper places spontaneously” (Tao Te Ching 1963, ch. 32), and they will “transform themselves of their own accord” (ch. 37). “Heaven and earth will unite to drip sweet dew, and the dew will drip evenly of its own accord without the command of man” (ch. 32). This is because Tao is the source and principle of purity, tranquility, spiritual power, life, and peace in the world (ch. 39). In examining the Tao Te Ching, we cannot identify any suffering that is not explained as man-made. The fact that he does not deal with natural sufferings is evidently not because he is not concerned with them, but because no such thing can exist in his world-conception. Chuang Tzu, however, differs from him on this point. Chuang Tzu, the other major Taoist philosopher, definitely recognizes the existence of natural sufferings, which he explains as the effects of the wonderful transformation of all things in Tao (ch. 6). He advises people that the pains should be accepted as they are, and should not be regarded as evil (See Sung-Peng Hsu 1976, 306-7).

Explanation of the Existence of Evil in the Universe

An important issue in Western discussions of philosophy of religion is the problem of explaining the existence of evils in a universe supposedly created by an all-powerful, all-loving, and all-knowing God (Hick 1963, 40-47). A similar question can be raised with regard to Lao Tzu's philosophy. If the universe is spontaneously produced from Tao, the summum bonum, how can there be evil in the world? On the basis of our discussion so far, we can formulate the following form of argument to express Lao Tzu's position:

1.  The Tao is the summum bonum.

2.  The Tao is the ultimate source of all things and events.

3.  All things and events are good if they are not the results of some interference with the spontaneous evolution of the Tao.

4.  The assertive use of the human will is an interference with the spontaneous evolution of the Tao.

Therefore, every thing or event that is caused by the assertive use of the will is evil.

Premise 4 can be revised to say that only the assertive use of the will is an interference with the spontaneous evolution of the Tao. In that case, all evils are either some assertive uses of the will or their consequences. Our discussion points to this stronger position.

Premises 1, 2, and 3 are the basic beliefs or assumptions of Lao Tzu's philosophy, which we shall not question here. The problem is whether premise 4 is consistent with them. It seems reasonable to say that the will itself is good, because it is clearly not a product of the assertive use of the will. Here we come to two important questions. The first is why man, who is supposedly good by nature, uses the will to assert something against the Tao. Would it not be possible to always use the will in accordance with the Tao? The second question is whether the will is “free” to interfere with the Tao's evolution.

With regard to the first question, no ready answer can be found in the Tao Te Ching. The question probably had not occurred to Lao Tzu. We can safely rule out any Satan figure responsible for causing man to assert something against the Tao. The answer can probably be found in Lao Tzu's idea of the Tao’s decline. Even though the will itself is good insofar as it is produced by the Tao, it is probably a product at the Tao’s decline, thus not an ideal product. It may have the inherent tendency to deviate from the Tao. The idea of the decline of the Tao is found in Tao Te Ching (1963, ch. 38), just quoted, where it is said that when the Tao is lost, te appears. The appearance of te is apparently not caused by something other than the Tao itself. A similar idea appears where Lao Tzu says, “When the great Tao declines, there appear jen and i.”(Tao Te Ching 1963, ch. 18). Though the appearance of jen and i can be explained as the result of the assertive use of the will, the idea that the Tao declines cannot be ignored. This seems to mean that the Tao, though believed to be inexhaustible in its power, is limited in power after all. This is undoubtedly a critical issue in Lao Tzu's philosophy.

 

It may be argued that if te represents a fall from the Tao, the natural world, which is te, cannot be as perfect as the Tao itself. This is true, but we have argued that even though it is, in a sense, a fall from the Tao, the natural world is so full of the power of the Tao that Lao Tzu cannot see any suffering in it. All evils, according to our interpretation, come from our assertive use of the will.

The second question, whether the will is free to interfere with the Tao's evolution, is in a way related to the first question. When the Tao is full of power, it is almost impossible for the will to interfere with its operations. “If one tries to hew wood for the master carpenter, how can one avoid hurting one's own hands?” (Tao Te Ching 1963, ch. 74). But when the Tao is in decline, the will will be in a better position to do so. There is, however, another reason why, in Lao Tzu's philosophy, the will is in principle free to interfere with the Tao. In his conception of the universe, there are no external or eternal “laws” of nature, to which all things must conform. The principles of change are internal laws that are supposed to emerge spontaneously when the relevant conditions exist. Some kind of causality certainly exists in Lao Tzu's thought, but it is something akin to the Humean, not the Newtonian, conception of causality (Sung-Peng Hsu 1976, 313-14). It is important to note that Lao Tzu has no doubt that the will is free to interfere with the Tao. He is afraid, however, that the use of the will causes suffering in the world and turn the spontaneous universe into a mechanistic one bound by laws and virtues.

Overcoming Evil

The way of wu-wei, as the action of the Tao, suggests how one can confront the problem of evil and suffering in this present human life.  The way of overcoming evil is to read “evil” backwards.  In other words, the way of overcoming evil is a way of living.  In a Taoist theology, the Tao is the source of all life.  As the origin of life, the Tao originates, nurtures, and fulfills life in the world. Therefore, In Taoism, the way of overcoming evil is to follow the Tao, to actualize wu-wei in human life.  To follow the Tao’s will is the way to live everlastingly.

Then, what is the task of human beings in the midst of evil and suffering?  In the Taoist tradition, human beings are the mediators between Heaven and the earth.  The function of a mediator is to embrace others and live with them through self-emptying and self-sacrificing, which is the vision of wu-wei. The task of a mediator is to actualize wu-wei; that is, to recognize the interconnectedness, interrelatedness, and interdependence with the others and with the Tao or God.  Thus, the vision of the Taoist theology opens its eyes not only to human cultural world and God, but also to the ecological world.

In sum, the way of overcoming evil in the Taoist theology is to engage with wu-wei. Wu-wei has the ontological basis to embrace being in non-being, as well as the ethical practicality to do something in non-doing.  In the metaphysics of the Tao, wu-wei is the ultimate ground to embrace being. Likewise, wu-wei as non-action ethically embraces action. Wu-wei in the narrow path represents the yin of the Tao, and yet it embraces yang in itself as a whole. This receptive characteristic of the Tao provides humankind the vision to resolve the evil in this present world.

Finally, since any aspect of the world is a manifestation of the Tao, corresponding to a different participation of the Yin and Yang principles, nothing can be considered to be essentially evil in the world. Even if Yin is termed as a negative principle, it never manifests itself alone. In the Tao Te Ching, it is stated:  

When beauty is abstracted,

 then ugliness has been implied;

when good is abstracted,

then evil has been implied. (Tao Te Ching 1988, ch. 2)

Every positive factor involves its negative or opposing counterpart. What is usually called evil, as physical and mental manifestation, is the result of a lack of balance between the two opposing principles and corresponds to a bigger participation of the Yin principle. Evil belongs to the nature of the world, so humans have to subscribe to the universal harmony and respect the equilibrium of the two polarities. The Tao is eternal and so are the two principles Yang and Yin. Therefore, good and evil must be eternal as necessary elements of our world.

 

 

Conclusion

Lao Tzu regards all evil and suffering as resulting from human actions and from getting out of the natural way. From this perspective, evil refers to any action that is not in accordance with the Tao. The way to overcome evil is to accept it as part of the reality and follow the Tao—to actualize wu-wei in human life. The Taoist metaphysics does not leave the solution for the problem of evil to the future or to the other world, but rather embraces it in this life.  In the Taoist metaphysics, evil and good are two parts of the reality, as one sees it in the Yin-Yang relation. The bipolarity of the Tao, thus, provides not only the theoretical basis but also the ethical practicality to deal with the problem of evil.

 

 

 

References 

 

Blofeld, John. 1978. Taoism: The Road to Immortality. Boston: Shambhala

ChuangTzu. 1968. The Complete Works of Chuang Tzu. Translated by Burton Watson. New York: Columbia University Press.

 Creel, Herrlee Glessner. 1970. What is Taoism? And other studies in Chinese cultural history. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Hick, John. 1963. Philosophy of Religion. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall.

———. 1978. Evil and the God of Love. New York, Hagerstown, San Francisco, London: Harper & Row, Publishers.

Tao Te Ching. 1963. Translated by Wing-tsit Chan. Indianapolis, Ind.: Bobbs-Merrill.

———. Translated by Stephen Mitchell. New York Harper & Row Publishers.

Lin, Yutang, ed. and trans. 1976. The Wisdom of Laotse. New York: The Modern Library.

MacGregoi, Geddes. 1973. Philosophical Issues in Religious Thought. Boston: Houghton Milllin.

Mackie, J. L. 1973. “Evil and Omnipotence.” In Philosophy of Religion, edited by W. Rowe and W. Wainwright. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.

Needham, Joseph. 1956. Science and Civilization in China. Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press.

Pojman, L., 1991. Introduction to Philosophy: Classical and Contemporary Readings. Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Co.

Kirkland, Russel, Timothy Barrett, and Livia Kohn. 2000. “Introduction.” In Daoism

 

Yu-Lan, Fung. 1952. A Hisrory of Chinese Philosophy. Translated by Deck Bodde. Princeton. N.J.: Princeton University Press

Edited by Preety_India

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Personal Tao

 

Taoism 101: Introduction to the Tao

 

Taken from web 

 

I have been asked many times how to find a Temple, Master or how best to learn Taoism. So I created a short Taoism 101 course on how to discover Taoism.

Here is a different type of guide to learning Taoism, a modernized practical guide to living as a Taoist!. Taoism teaches a person to follow their breath, to embrace wonder and the joy of living gracefully with style.

What is Taoism?

To many people, a confusing aspect of Taoism is its very definition. Many religions will happily teach philosophy and dogma which in reflection defines a person. Taoism flips this around. It starts by teaching a truth; “The Tao” is indefinable. It then follows up by teaching that each person can discover the Tao on their terms. A teaching like this can be very hard to grasp when most people desire very concrete definitions in their own life.

A simple way to start learning the definition of Taoism is to start within yourself. Here are three easy starting steps to learning Taoism:

1 Don’t concentrate on the meaning of Tao (this will come later naturally)

2 Understand what Taoism is. Taoism is more than just a “philosophy” or a “religion”. Taoism should be understood as being: A system of belief, attitudes, and practices set towards the service and living to a person’s nature.

3 The path of understanding Taoism is simply accepting oneself. Live life and discover who you are. Your nature is ever changing and is always the same. Don’t try to resolve the various contradictions in life, instead learn acceptance of your nature.

 

Practicing Taoism

Taoism teaches a person to flow with life. Over the years Taoism has become many things to many people. Hundreds of variations in Taoist practice exist. Some of these practices are philosophical, and others are religious. Taoism makes no distinction in applying labels to its nature because to do so would limit a person. We are each a blend of many truths. The truth taught in Taoism is to embrace life in actions that support you as a person.

Taoism teaches a person to live in their heart.

Here are some simple starting tips to help a person live as a Taoist.

Having a set of basic guidelines can be helpful. However realistically, guidelines don’t determine how to live; instead, Taoism teaches by living you will express your nature. My guidelines are the following:

With care, I aid those who are extended expressions of my nature.

Be true to me

Connect to the world as I want to be treated.

Connect to those outside my nature with decisive action.

To those unwilling to accept me for my true nature, no action is required:
Just silently let them be themselves as I remain myself.

I own nothing; I am merely a passing custodian of items outside of my nature.

Discover a set of practices to aid keeping the mind, body and spirit engaged and strong. Remember practices should support your essence with the activities fitting the needs of the moment. Your life practices will end up being an ever-shifting mix of activities relative to your needs. For example, I practice martial arts to keep my body strong, yoga to make my body subtle, meditation to clear my mind, bike around simply to fly, and poetry as a lens of examination. All these and more are my shifting practices to support my essence, and in doing each, each helps me learn more about myself and the world.

Take time, relax and just explore and poke around. Taoism has no plans. Taoism is based on following your gut feelings and trusting your instincts.

It’s the pause in a breath… that each step of living becomes visible for your larger life to improve and follow upon. Smile, when needing to pick a possible next step. To smile is to open possibilities. Breathe when needing a break. Since to breathe is to be at one with yourself. Alternate the two, and your path will become free and clear for an entire lifetime of wonder to explore. While simple, you would be surprised how many people cannot embrace this most basic aspect of Taoist practice! People think it cannot be that simple! Taoism indeed is this simple. If you follow and practice step four, not only is that all one needs to embrace Taoism thoroughly, but also anything becomes possible within this simple practice. However, most people need time letting go of expectations. So it’s also ok to dig deeper into Taoism. Taoism has many many levels of teachings on purpose to help people from all perspectives move smoothly in life.

I can summarize Taoism as simply as

Taoism is acceptance of your life.
Taoism is following your breath to find peace.
Taoism is opening up a smile to enable possibility.

If you embrace these three ideas, everything else follows in Taoism. Some people do start here. Others take a longer more colorful path. That’s fine also since you get to experience more color in your life. No wrong path exists at the end since it’s about experiencing life.

 

Practical Taoist Advice

At times the process of learning Taoism is also a process of healing. Take time to heal (don’t rush and hurt yourself more in the rushing). Taoism teaches to embrace your body with patience.

There are over 7 billion people in the world. So there are over 7 billion paths to Taoism! Every person can teach us something.

Sometimes you need quietness; it’s ok to take time off to only hear yourself and not the noise of civilization at times.

People expect and think that the goal of life is perfection, it’s not. Work both at being good at something while also embracing the various little faults in life. Imperfections end up being critical defining characteristics of each of us. The little bits of imperfection we each have are elements of chaos that give each person individuality and distinction! Without our small flaws, we wouldn’t be individuals at all! Taoism teaches us how to accept both the best and worse parts of our life.

Taoism teaches a person to drop expectations. The more expectations you have for your life, the less you will become. A Taoist lives life without expectations, living in the here and now fully. People also need a few expectations as it’s part of navigating their story. Here is a trick. Create only a single expectation at a time for that future experience. For example, an expectation you will smile or have some fun. That’s it! Don’t place any learning or changing into your expectation. If you do, this plants the seed for the opposite to occur, By creating a single simple expectation such as smiling, this then becomes something you can always fulfill since you can empower that action to happen. Any expectation more complicated or relying on something outside of yourself just sets up the future to not meeting your needs. Dropping expectation is very very important within Taoism.

Lather, Rinse and Repeat, and then toss the instructions away to do what is right for yourself. Welcome to Taoism at the very elemental level, so be open, experiment and embrace what works for you. Taoism as a tradition has teachers who work with students on an individual basis. In the end, no guide or Master can be right for everyone. For this reason, we are always our own best teacher. Give yourself credit and patience to be such a teacher to your personal life.

 

 

 

Explore Your Essence

First: Learn how to trust your intuition.

Second: Let go of judgments that hold you back.

Third: Remove conflict and anger from your relationships.

Fourth: Be kind to yourself and pace your life to match your essence.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


J̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t̸͟͞ j̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s̸͟͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t͞ 

🅗🅔🅐🅣🅗 - 🅜🅨 🅞🅦🅝 🅒🅞🅒🅞🅞🅝 🅞🅕 🅛🅞🅥🅔 🅐🅝🅓 🅟🅔🅐🅒🅔

My twin Flame guardian is a Dragon. 

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Taoist Resources

If you need a guide to Taoism, then first start with these three books:

Tao Te Ching

Chuang Tzu

A Personal Tao

I recommend starting with A Personal Tao, as it’s specifically written with a modern perspective to help people discover their nature. Due to the nature of Taoist writings, you can easily read all three at the same time and intermix the ideas.

If you desire a person as a guide, you can find a Taoist temple, Zen Dojo or local sage to chat with occasionally. Taoism’s deepest truths must come from the inside, but at times it’s helpful to get an outside perspective to see your nature. If you are in the Oakland area of California, I highly recommend The Taoist Center. Dr. Alex Feng is an incredibly open and sincere Taoist Master. I also offer classes.

If you cannot find a local resource, then start keeping a journal and over time review it. A journal becomes a nice mirror to reflect upon our nature as we move through life.

 

Casey teaches Taoism with contemporary language. Julie teaches shamanic meditation and movement exercises. Together we offer a unique retreat that reveals your essence and helps you be whole in life.

Our Taoist retreats are one on one and taught in a traditional Taoist manner of a teacher directly to a student.

 

 

History of Taoism

Most sites will teach you the terms and history of Taoism. That might be nice for academics: but it does nothing for teaching you how to live as a Taoist. Taoism is about embracing life in the now and not in being stuck in history or terms.

Originally Taoism can be considered to be a shamanic practice. However, Taoism is so old; the complete history of Taoism cannot be traced through written records. Taoism is very much a tradition that is transmitted verbally from master to student over the generations. Because of this, some of the shamanic roots of Taoism still survive today. Taoism historically is also a very flexible practice. Taoism is a practice of change, and it always changes to meet the needs of the times. Even as you read this, Taoism is evolving to keep pace with modern culture. Constant evolution is one reason Taoism has survived for so long; it always adapts with the time while holding onto a few key concepts to keep the practice true to the Tao.

An early surviving text to describe the Tao is the Tao Te Ching, written by Lao-Tzu (The old master). The Tao Te Ching is a series of poems that can be considered to be a work of philosophy, a treatise on how to run a government, a how-to book for achieving a balanced life, or a sage’s reflection of humanity and the universe. It is known to have been written over 2400 years ago, but not much else is retained about the origins. Many fun stories abound about these origins; however, these are just that, stories. What is important is that the Tao Te Ching and its poetry survive, having had an impact on the course of human events over the past 2400 years. It’s an interesting book, worth skimming. I say “skim” because it is written in a light-hearted manner. If a reader stares too hard or takes the Tao Te Ching too literally, the multiple intentions within the poetry will be lost.

Many many stories and tales exist about the History of Taoism. Some of these stories could be true, and some could be fables. As a Taoist, the point is to learn from the mixing of our reactions to the tales. Veracity is best left to history; time will always change “truth” for each generation.

 

 

 

Tao and Chinese Culture

Tao is a word. It translates roughly as the way. When as a Taoist we talk about the Tao, we are talking about the central aspect of our practice. However, it’s important to keep in mind, as a word, the word Tao is used for a lot more than just Taoism. Every religion has its way. Every person has their way. Every practice has their way. There is a Tao for everything. This doesn’t directly mean it’s the same Tao as what we speak about in Taoism. While from a Taoist viewpoint it’s all the same, from a human literary perspective it’s not. So it’s important to always take the word Tao within the context of the statement being made.

For instance: a Confucian will use the term Tao to cover how they believe and act. On paper, the Tao of Confucianism is quite a bit different than the Tao of Taoism. A Confucian embraces order while a Taoist will dance to chaos. The Tao that a Confucian teaches is a rigid logical complex system of behavior. The Tao of Taoism is freedom to embrace all the whimsy of life. The same Tao both times: in the using the Tao to refer to a way of life, but the actual results, the teachings practiced are quite a bit different. A path is a path, but not everyone on that path will experience it in the same way.

Of course, to a Taoist, all paths do lead to the same place :). It’s just the journey might seem longer to some than others.

So please keep this in mind if you see the word Tao being used in a slightly different context than what you were expecting.

 

 

Advanced Taoism: Tao and God

This last section is for the brave of heart, for those wanting a few more advanced answers.

First and foremost: Taoism respects the concept of God. Initially one might think a discussion of God would be an impersonal topic. It isn’t. Each person has a very deep and connected relationship in what they view God may or may not be. A person’s view of God is a statement and reflection of the way a person also views their own life. As a result, when discussing differences in God, it’s best to respect it as also being a highly personal and sensitive topic.

When exploring Taoism, eventually a person compares the terms, God and Tao. I would suggest first reading this chapter of A Personal Tao on Religion.

From this chapter:

Taoism offers the option to skip the comparison. This question is irrelevant. God could or could not exist, and either state doesn’t change the way we lead our lives. Our lives are expressions of action between ourselves and the universe. To respect our surrounding environment is a furthering of respect to ourselves. This manner of living doesn’t change regardless of the nature of God or the Tao.

However, most people insist upon definition and seeking deeper answers. So let’s expand upon God and Tao. God as a term is often “defined” as being an ultimate creator or universal power. The various aspects of God have been fought over as long as humans have written and used words. All definitions are based on perception. From a Taoist perspective: human-based definitions are both right and wrong: as all meanings are relative to humanity’s state of mind. A Taoist stays out of arguments of definition. It’s not productive arguing over something relative to each person. Instead, Taoism accepts each person’s view of God as being personal.

A Taoist doesn’t think the Tao is before, after or is even equal to God. The Tao is a concept to describe something that goes beyond our capability to define. Taoism leaves the Tao undefined, and a Taoist happily explores the wonder that opens up as a result.

All Taoist’s will agree: The Tao is indefinable…

Something which is indefinable: is outside of human definition by default. However, we can still accept it as indefinable. The Tao by being indefinable removes all issues of perception in its definition since perception cannot directly reveal the Tao which is undefined. It’s just simply and utterly is: undefined!

Tao and God merge towards the same concept when the definition of God is indefinable. Once a person accepts the definition of the Tao as being indefinable, that person by definition has to leave it as undefined. Once you place any definition over such a term, it takes a person further away from the whole concept of the Tao.

In some of the Taoist religions, Taoism does have gods, but Taoist gods typically are very tangible beings. They walk beside us, share tea with us, laugh, play and can alter reality. A Taoist god represents an enlightened immortal that helps other conscious beings work towards grace. In Taoism, gods are shown as guides and inspiration towards how to find enlightenment. (Please keep in mind: this paragraph is an extreme simplification of how Taoism views Gods.)

We do say in Taoism: We are of the Tao, or God is the Tao. Taoist’s say this because we also are undefined. We only define ourselves as we live. While living, we are still moving through life, a large part of our nature is indefinable until the end of Living. As a result: we are of the Tao. A Taoist can see the Tao within everything, a very delicate logical truth and often confuses non-Taoists. We know the Tao by witnessing our own life, and that is why I wrote A Personal Tao.  We have just come full circle in the Tao’s definition. The Tao is indefinable, and yet we are complete with the Tao.

A Taoist knows to leave the Tao as is, to grasp the Tao within the chase of living fully. It’s a wonderful contradiction to embrace, and it does completely full-fill one’s life within that acceptance. For a Taoist, this is all about living and exploring our possibilities, for we each are undefined and of the Tao. Trying to define ourselves just limits one’s nature and what can be done. So a Taoist instead embraces the Tao, to discover and open up all possibilities instead.

From here each person is free to draw their conclusions. Conclusions will always shift to the winds of perception.

If this confuses you, then please go back and repeat these three steps:

Don’t concentrate on the definition of the Tao (this will come later naturally)

Understand what Taoism is: Taoism is more than just a “philosophy” or a “religion”. Taoism should be understood as being: A system of belief, attitudes, and practices set towards the service and living to a person’s nature.

The path of understanding the Tao is simply accepting you.

Live life and discover who you are. Your nature is ever changing and is always the same. Don’t try to resolve the various contradictions in life, instead learn acceptance of your nature.

Remember: Taoism teaches a person to live in their heart.

Sincerely
Casey

 

🍓🍓🍓🍓🍓🍓Taken from web sources 


J̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t̸͟͞ j̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s̸͟͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t͞ 

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My twin Flame guardian is a Dragon. 

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Taoism

I. Definition

Taoism (or Daoism) is one of the main strands of traditional Chinese philosophy. It gets its name from the idea of the Dao, which means “the way,” which is the reality beyond human perception, a reality that Taoists strongly associate with the natural world. For Taoists, the ultimate goal of human life is to understand this reality and learn to live in harmony with it.

One of the main beliefs of Taoism is wu-wei, or “not doing.” Taoists believe that the path to wisdom and happiness involves emptying the mind and settling into a deep stillness. Like Buddhists and Hindus, Taoists practice intensive spiritual meditation as a method for understanding the world and living a better life.

 

Taoism is strongly associated with the yin-yang sign, which symbolizes the Taoist belief in matched opposites: light and dark, hot and cold, wet and dry, masculine and feminine. However, the real point of a yin-yang symbol isn’t just the black and white halves – it’s also the fact that each half contains part of the other! The black side has some white in it, and the white side has some black. This is a central belief in Taoism: that even though the world is made up of matched opposites, it’s not a simple matter of “this vs. that.” Moreover, there is no ethical dimension here: light is not “better” than dark just as summer is not “better” than winter; they are just different. In Taoism, good and evil are illusions.

 

“A bowl is most useful when it is empty.” (Laozi)

This is one of the most famous lines from the Dao De Ching or Tao Te Ching, (see section 7). Like many of the lines from this book, it uses a simple image from everyday life – something everyone can relate to. But its philosophical message is profound, and not easy to understand if all you do is look at it on a page. Instead, you have to live this idea. In everyday life, try to be an empty bowl, and over time you may come to understand the wisdom of the idea.

 

 


J̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t̸͟͞ j̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s̸͟͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t͞ 

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My twin Flame guardian is a Dragon. 

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What does Daoism (Taoism) teach us about ecology?

Four main principles of Daoism guide the relationship between humanity and nature:

1. Follow the Earth

The Dao De Jing says: 'Humanity follows the Earth, the Earth follows Heaven, Heaven follows the Dao, and the Dao follows what is natural.' Daoists therefore obey the Earth. The Earth respects Heaven, Heaven abides by the Dao, and the Dao follows the natural course of everything. Humans should help everything grow according to its own way. We should cultivate the way of no-action and let nature be itself.

2. Harmony with nature

In Daoism, everything is composed of two opposite forces known as Yin and Yang. The two forces are in constant struggle within everything. When they reach harmony, the energy of life is created. Someone who understands this point will not exploit nature, but will treat it well and learn from it. It is obvious that in the long run, the excessive use of nature will bring about disaster, even the extinction of humanity.

3. Too much success

If the pursuit of development runs counter to the harmony and balance of nature, even if it is of great immediate interest and profit, people should restrain themselves from it. Insatiable human desire will lead to the over-exploitation of natural resources. To be too successful is to be on the path to defeat.

4. Affluence in bio-diversity

Daoism has a unique sense of value in that it judges affluence by the number of different species. If all things in the universe grow well, then a society is a community of affluence. If not, this kingdom is on the decline. This view encourages both government and people to take good care of nature. This thought is a special contribution by Daoism to the conservation of nature.

 

Daoism origins

Ancient roots

Daoism can be traced back to Shamanism, which spread into Mongolia and China at least ten thousand years ago. Two mythological figures from those early days are the divine brother and sister Fu Hsi and Nu Kua. Together they created human progeny and created all aspects of civilization, such as writing, agriculture, medicine and astrology. They were the first two of the Three August Ones of Chinese mythology. Later came the Yellow Emperor, bringer of order and the first recorded ruler. Legend puts his rule around 2500 BC. He is revered as the one who introduced divine knowledge into human society, especially the arts of medicine.

Formal beginnings

The influence of the Shamans in ancient China waned from the beginning of the first millennium BCE. During this period the great Lao Zi is supposed to have lived, and written the Dao De Jing (Tao Te-Ching), the most important book of Daoist wisdom. Daoism was formally established as a religion under the East Han dynasty, about 2,000 years ago. Since then Daoism has been one of the main components of Chinese culture, and has exerted great influence on the Chinese way of thinking, working and acting.

The five religions of China

Daoism is one of the five recognised religions of China – the other four are Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism and Islam. Now the influence of Daoism has spread beyond the Chinese-speaking world to attract international interest.

What do Daoists believe?

Dao: the way

The heart of the very earliest Chinese vision of the cosmos is the Dao, the origin of all. Dao means ‘the way’. The Dao is the origin of everything and the ultimate aim of all Daoists. The Dao is Heaven, Earth and Humanity. The Dao cannot be defined because it exists beyond all forms. In the words of the great Daoist sage, Lao Zi: ‘That which can be named is not the true Dao’. The Dao teaches wu-wei, the way of no-action and no-selfishness. This means to live in a plain and modest way and not to struggle for material gain.

The value of life

Daoism regards life as the most valuable thing and pursues immortality. Life can be prolonged through meditation and exercise. People should train their will, discard selfishness, and seek to be a model of virtue. With high moral sense and good exercise, one can maintain energy throughout one’s life. To achieve this, Daoism stresses the need for a peaceful and harmonious environment as a very important external condition.

Yin and Yang

The process by which the Dao gave rise to reality is defined in the classic text, Dao-De Jing, as follows:

‘The Tao gives birth to the One.
The One gives birth to the Two.
The Two gives birth to the Three.
The Three give birth to the Ten Thousand.’

These words describe how the Tao, the essence of all, gives birth to Nature—the One—which in turn gives birth to Yin and Yang—the Two. Yin is female, moist, cold, the moon, autumn and winter, shadows and waters. Yang is male, dry, hot, the sun, spring and summer, brightness and earth. From the perpetual striving of Yin and Yang arises the Three—Heaven, Earth and Humanity. Humanity must try to balance the opposites of Heaven and Earth.

 

 


J̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t̸͟͞ j̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s̸͟͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t͞ 

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My twin Flame guardian is a Dragon. 

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Wu Wei – Doing Nothing 無爲

Wu wei means – in Chinese – non-doing or ‘doing nothing’. It sounds like a pleasant invitation to relax or worse, fall into laziness or apathy. Yet this concept is key to the noblest kind of action according to the philosophy of Daoism – and is at the heart of what it means to follow Dao or The Way. According to the central text of Daoism, the Dao De Jing: ‘The Way never acts yet nothing is left undone’. This is the paradox of wu wei. It doesn’t meant not acting, it means ‘effortless action’ or ‘actionless action’. It means being at peace while engaged in the most frenetic tasks so that one can carry these out with maximum skill and efficiency. Something of the meaning of wu weiis captured when we talk of being ‘in the zone’ – at one with what we are doing, in a state of profound concentration and flow.

 

Wu wei is closely connected to the Daoist reverence for the natural world, for it means striving to make our behaviour as spontaneous and inevitable as certain natural processes, and to ensure that we are swimming with rather than against currents. We are to be like the bamboo that bends in the wind or the plant that adjusts itself to the shape of a tree. Wu wei involves letting go of ideals that we may otherwise try to force too violently onto things; it invites us instead to respond to the true demands of situations, which tend only to be noticed when we put our own ego-driven plans aside. What can follow is a loss of self-consciousness, a new unity between the self and its environment, which releases an energy that is normally held back by an overly aggressive, wilful style of thinking.

But none of this means we won’t be able to change or affect things if we strive for wu wei. The Dao De Jingpoints out that we should be like water, which is ‘submissive and weak’ and ‘yet which can’t be surpassed for attacking what is hard and strong’. Through gentle persistence and a compliance with the specific shape of a problem, an obstacle can be worked round and gradually eroded. 

The idea of achieving the greatest effects by a wise strategic passivity has been central to Chinese notions of politics, diplomacy and business. In the manuals on wisdom produced by Daoists, we are repeatedly told that rather than impose a plan or model on a situation, we should let others act frantically, and then lightly adjust ourselves as we see the direction that matters have evolved in.

In China’s Tang dynasty, many poets likened wu wei to the best aspects of being drunk. It wasn’t alcoholism they were promoting, but the decline in rigidity and anxiety that sometimes comes with being a little drunk, and which can help us to accomplish certain tasks. One poet compared someone inspired by wu wei to a drunk man who falls uninjured from a moving cart – such is their spiritual momentum that they are unaffected by accidents and misfortunes that might break those of a more controlled and controlling mindset.

Theories of painting from the Tang period onwards made wu wei central to artistic practice. Rather than laboriously attempting to reproduce nature faithfully, the artist should find nature within themselves and surrender to its calls. The painter’s task is not to imitate the external surface of things, but to present the qior ‘spirit’ of things like mountains, trees, birds and rivers by feeling some of this spirit in themselves  – and then letting it flow out through the brush onto silk or paper.

It followed that Daoist thinkers revered not just the finished work of art, but the act of painting itself – and considered artist’s studios as places of applied philosophy. The Tang dynasty poet, Fu Zai, described a big party that had been thrown to witness the painter Zhang Zao in action:

Right in the middle of the room he sat down with his legs spread out, took a deep breath, and his inspiration began to issue forth. Those present were as startled as if lightning were shooting across

 

Right in the middle of the room he sat down with his legs spread out, took a deep breath, and his inspiration began to issue forth. Those present were as startled as if lightning were shooting across the heavens or a whirlwind was sweeping up into the sky. The ink seemed to spitting from his flying brush. He clapped his hands with a cracking sound. Suddenly strange shapes were born. When he had finished, there stood pine trees, scaly and riven, crags steep and precipitous, clear water and turbulent clouds. He threw down his brush, got up, and looked around in every direction. It seemed as if the sky had cleared after a storm, to reveal the true essence of ten thousand things.

Fu Zai added of Zhang (whose works are sadly now lost) that, ‘he had left mere skill behind’ and that his art ‘was not painting, but the very Dao itself’. Zhang Zao would often fling his ink and spread it with his hands on a silk scroll, to create spontaneous forms that he then worked up into expressive images of nature. Splodges were incorporated and ingeniously made to flow back into the work. All this was wu wei.

A good life could not be attained by wu wei alone – but this Daoist concept captures a distinctive wisdom we may at times be in desperate need of, when we are in danger of damaging ourselves through an overly stern and unyielding adherence to ideas which simply cannot fit the demands of the world as it is.


J̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t̸͟͞ j̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s̸͟͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t͞ 

🅗🅔🅐🅣🅗 - 🅜🅨 🅞🅦🅝 🅒🅞🅒🅞🅞🅝 🅞🅕 🅛🅞🅥🅔 🅐🅝🅓 🅟🅔🅐🅒🅔

My twin Flame guardian is a Dragon. 

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What did Bruce Lee mean by his saying "be like water"?

“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend.” - Bruce Lee
There are different takes on what he could have meant, depending on what the question was that led him to this statement, but if we assume he talks about life, then what he means is this:
Water is formless, therefore it can adapt to every form.
You, however, are often way too rigid.

 

“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend.” - Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee already explains this a bit in the full quote:
There are different takes on what he could have meant, depending on what the question was that led him to this statement, but if we assume he talks about life, then what he means is this:
Water is formless, therefore it can adapt to every form.
You, however, are often way too rigid.
When a situation arises that you do not think you can handle, fear overtakes you and you degenerate into a state of helplessness.

 

“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend.” - Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee already explains this a bit in the full quote:
There are different takes on what he could have meant, depending on what the question was that led him to this statement, but if we assume he talks about life, then what he means is this:
Water is formless, therefore it can adapt to every form.
You, however, are often way too rigid.

 

Bruce Lee already explains this a bit in the full quote:
“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend.” - Bruce Lee
There are different takes on what he could have meant, depending on what the question was that led him to this statement, but if we assume he talks about life, then what he means is this:
Water is formless, therefore it can adapt to every form.
You, however, are often way too rigid.
When a situation arises that you do not think you can handle, fear overtakes you and you degenerate into a state of helplessness.
main-thumb-87257044-50-uzjazluzknrqloinstbhfuaawofflefh
You upvoted this
You are not adapting to your circumstances, are not dealing with the situation, and instead complain about it, and even blaming it.


J̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t̸͟͞ j̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s̸͟͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t͞ 

🅗🅔🅐🅣🅗 - 🅜🅨 🅞🅦🅝 🅒🅞🅒🅞🅞🅝 🅞🅕 🅛🅞🅥🅔 🅐🅝🅓 🅟🅔🅐🅒🅔

My twin Flame guardian is a Dragon. 

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Bruce Lee already explains this a bit in the
full quote:
"Emptyyour mind, be formless, shapeless, like
water. Ifyou put water intoa cup, it becomes
the cup. You put waterinto a bottle and it
becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it
becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it
can crash. Be water myfriend."- Bruce Lee
There are different takes on what he could
have meant, depending on what the question
was that led him to this statement, but if we
assume he talks about life, then what he
means is this:
Water is formless, therefore it can adapt to
every form.
You, however, are often way too rigid.
 

You, however, are often way too rigid.
When a situation arises that you do not think
you can handle, fear overtakes you and you
degenerate into a state of helplessness.
You are not adapting to your circumstances,
are not dealing with the situation, and
instead complain about it, and even blaming
When the teacup situation arises you yell at it
if you do not fit in right away, and blame the
surroundings for shaping you into a shape
that does not fit.
You do not adapt.
You let your past control who you are and are
staying rigid in your form, which means you
only fit into certain situations and crack at
others.
 

When water crashes against an object, it
disperses and forms again, but when a box,
for example, crashes against an object it
shatters into pieces.
Currently, you are like that box, trying to
force yourself to adjust to different
situations, shattering to pieces, breaking
your own spirit, if you can't.
What Bruce Lee meant with his quote "Be
like water my friend" is that you should not
hold your own image so tightly.
You are not your past, you are not the object
people shaped you to be; you are simply
water that has temporarily taken on that
form.
You can be successful no matter your start,
can be anything you like to be and adjust to
any and every situation if you just adjust and
deal with things the way they come instead of
wishing they were different.
Stop trying to make the teacup adjust to
you and adjust to the teacup instead.
Stop trying to make the teacup adjust to
you and adjust to the teacup instead.
Problems arise all the time in life, and you
can try to keep your rigid shape, smashing
into the problems until one of you breaks, or
you can be like water and slip through the
cracks.
 

 


J̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t̸͟͞ j̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s̸͟͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t͞ 

🅗🅔🅐🅣🅗 - 🅜🅨 🅞🅦🅝 🅒🅞🅒🅞🅞🅝 🅞🅕 🅛🅞🅥🅔 🅐🅝🅓 🅟🅔🅐🅒🅔

My twin Flame guardian is a Dragon. 

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Taoism, Daoism (Chinese: 道教; pinyin: Dàojiāo)

Chinese philosophy to signify the fundamental or true nature of the world: simplicity and selflessness in conformity with the Tao, leading a life of non-purposive action, a life expressing the essence of spontaneity..
 

Taoism, also known as Daoism, arose about the same time as Confucianism. Laoze (Chinese: 老子; pinyin: Lǎozǐ, also Laotzi, Laotse, Lao-Tse, Lao-tzu, Lao Zi or Lão Tu), is considered to have written a book of 81 chapters, named Tao Te Ching, also Daodejing (trad. Chinese: 道德經; simpl. Chinese: 道德经; pinyin: Dàodéjīng), a classical Chinese text, mainly concerning 道 tao/ dào "way," and 德 te/dé "virtue”, life, strength.

Taoist thought focuses on genuineness, longevity, health, immortality, vitality, wu wei (non-action, a natural action, a perfect equilibrium with tao), detachment, refinement (emptiness), spontaneity, transformation and omni-potentiality.

This religious and philosophical tradition of Taoism had its roots in the nature worship and divination of the earliest Chinese people. 

The word ‘Tao’ 道 (or Dao) translates into "path", ”method”, “principle” or "way", the character 教 translates into ‘”teach” or “class” and Taoist belief is based on the idea that there is central or organizing principle of the Universe, a natural order or a "way of heaven", Tao, that one can come to know by living in harmony with nature and hence with the cosmos and the Universe. 

The philosophy of Tao signifies the fundamental or true nature of the world, it is the essential, unnameable process of the universe. Tao both precedes and encompasses the universe.

Nothing in the Universe is fixed, static or non moving; per se everything is transforming all the time.
The flow of ‘chi’ energy, as the essential energy of action, existence and active principle forming part of any living things, is compared and believed to be the influence that keeps the universal order of Tao balanced.

Analogies exist between all levels of existence: the Universe, the cosmos, Earth and mankind are structured analogically and are equal in detail, forming an interconnected whole.
Through an understanding of natural laws, an individual can be one with the Tao by living in accordance with nature (cosmos/ Universe) and all its transformations and changes, adopting and assimilating to these, and hence can gain eternal life.

With and due to the transformations and changes of the phenomena everything and every being spontaneously, by intuition and in impulse establishes its own ‘way’.

From an ethical point of view it is considered correct not to interfere with the spontaneity or alter it by any means, expressed by ‘wu wei’ (chin. 無爲 / 无为, wúwéi or also in Chinese: 爲無爲 / 为无为, wéi wúwéi, non- action as in abstention of any action opposing nature).

All things with their transformations and changes are considered to be self regulating, self expressing in their natural form.

Wu wei’ does not signify not acting at all, but rather not forcing things on their way. Wu wei signifies that the action should be immediately in accordance with the Tao, hence the necessary will be done without exaggeration, hyperbole or overeagerness as these are considered obstructive, though rather in an easy, facile, non disturbing way, leading to overall harmony and balance. It is a state of inner tranquillity, which will show the right effortless action at the right time.
(i.e. the harmonious complexity of natural ecosystems- the tao- works well without man made changes- wu wei.
Wu wei could be characterised by the adaptability of the flow of water in a stream. I.e. Water flows without awareness, or naturally, downriver (principle of tao). It might be blocked by an object (branch or stone), though without contriving to do so, finds it way around the object. Water acts without motive, it acts with wu wei.

If one wants to travel on water, one will use a boat or ship, since it is suitable as she moves around adequately on water. If one wants to walk on land, a boat is not suitable to move around. One will only be annoyed and only have difficulties, not gaining anything but inflicting damage to oneself.)

Taoism does not identify man's will as the root problem. Rather, it asserts that man must place his will in harmony with the natural universe.
Taoist philosophy recognizes that the Universe already works harmoniously according to its own ways; if a person exerts his will against or upon the world he would disrupt the harmony that already exists, he would go ‘against the flow of life’. (i.e. the harmonious change of seasons of summer, autumn, winter, spring - the tao- works well, though through man made global warming, the harmony is disordered. Damming rivers might result in devastating flooding- unwanted by mankind, though produced by the same.
On the other hand, the yearly flooding of the river Nile provides the soil with natural fertiliser. Damming the river would result in less fertilised soil, hence weaker crops, less harvest, less income, more hunger.)

The return to tao, the return to the interconnected whole and unity, can only be accomplished if dualistic thoughts are abolished and acts are conducted naturally and spontaneously.
Completeness in Taoism is thought of as empty, soft and spontaneous, and likewise should be the action: without the interference or intervention of a dualistic intellect, intuitive and adapting to a situation.
The completeness or perfection of any act detects by intuition the best way to proceed, and it is considered absurd to put one’s energy into an unfruitful, unsuccessful act just in order to act at all and hence exhaust and diminish one’s energy. Any act should be in accordance with the surrounding, circumstances and means. In this manner, wu wei is ‘not interfering’ or ‘action through non acting’ and can be considered as creative passivity.
Resulting from this attitude of ‘letting it happen’ results consequently as well the approach of non violence and lack of resistance.

The wu wei is characterised by an activity undertaken to perceive the Tao within all things and to conform oneself to its "way."
The practice and efficacy of wu wei are fundamental in Taoist thought.
The goal of ‘wu wei’ is alignment with Tao, revealing the soft and invisible power within all things.

When following the ‘wu wei’, the goal is called ‘pu’ (simplified Chinese: 朴; traditional Chinese: 樸; pinyin: pǔ, pú; lit. "uncut wood", translated as "uncarved block", "unsewn log", or "simplicity"), representing a passive state of receptiveness. It is believed to be the true nature of the mind, unburdened by knowledge or experiences. Pu is a symbol for a state of pure potential and perception without prejudice, without illusion.
Pu describes an aimless action, because with a goal, one would develop anxiety about this goal. Pu describes the ‘just being’ without the aim of being.
(i.e.: Playing an instrument just for playing, not thinking about the playing, since otherwise one will get in ones own way and interfere with one’s own playing.)

The ‘te’ (Chinese: 德; pinyin: dé, "power; virtue", ‘”heart”, "inherent character, personal character; inner power inner strength; integrity") is the manifestation of the Tao within all things, the active expression, the active living, or cultivation, of the "way" Tao, the implementation and manifestation of the Tao through undesigned actions.
The Tao implements and manifests itself through undesigned actions. 
If Tao is honoured and if ‘te’ is considered precious, than there is no need for any regulations: all is working durable by itself. Therefore, allow Tao to create, generate, nourish, proliferate, accomplish, ripen, mature, foster and protect; produce without owning, affect without keeping, increase without domineering: that is secret Tao.
Thus, to possess the fullness of te means to be in perfect harmony with one's original nature.

All things in the Universe, including mankind, are a microsomes of the Universe, to which all natural laws such as The Five Elements Theory, Feng Shui, the concept of the bagua and especially the the yin - yang philosophy, being an important concept of taoism since yin and yang emerge from the tao- apply.
‘The way of life’, rituals, certain foods (Five Elements), meditation, visualisation, imagination, mystical worlds, qigong, t'ai-chi-ch'uan, certain techniques of breathing, sexual practices (spiritual and cosmic pursuit, maintaining health, enhance one’s lifespan) and substances and medicine effect the believers physical and mental health, as well as the knowledge of nature with its natural herbs, traditional chinese medicine and knowledge of alchemy does.

By understanding himself, man may gain knowledge of the universe, and vice versa.

In Laotzi’s definition, tao is considered to be the pervasive principle of all things in the universe, being the highest reality and the highest mystery, the primordial originality and unity, a cosmical law and an absolute. From the tao diverted the ‘ten thousand things’, namely the cosmos, as well as the order of thing, similar to a law of nature. But tao itself is not an omnipotent being, but the genesis, the source and the alliance, the conjunction of opposites and as such not definable.

Tao is ‘the nameless', because neither it nor its principles can ever be adequately expressed in words.

From a philosophical point of view tao can be seen apart and beyond from all defining abstract concepts, because it is the reason for and the reason of being, the transcendental origin and transcendental philosophy and as such incorporates all, including the antipode of being and non being.

Based on that, nothing can be said referring the tao, because every single definition would impose a restriction. But tao is both, unlimited transcendency as well as the immanent principle of the cosmos and the universe. 

The effects of tao create the genesis by generating duality, yin and yang, light and shadow, since every action creates a counter-action as a natural, unavoidable movement within manifestations of the Tao. From the metamorphosis, movement, motion, flow, interaction and interplay of the duality emerges and arises the world.

 

The ‘Three Jewels of Tao’ (Chinese: 三寶; pinyin: sānbǎo) refer to the three virtues of taoism: 
1) compassion, kindness, love
(Chinese: 慈; pinyin: cí; literally "compassion, tenderness, love, mercy, kindness, gentleness and implies the term ‘mother’, ‘mother’s/ parental love’)

2) moderation, simplicity, frugality
(Chinese: 儉; pinyin: jiǎn; literally "frugality, moderation, economy, restraint, be sparing")
When applied to the moral life it stands for the simplicity of desire.

3 ) humility, modesty
The third treasure is a six-character phrase instead of a single word: Chinese 不敢為天下先, Bugan wei tianxia xian, "not dare to be first/ahead in the world", referring to the taoist way to avoid premature death.

Taoist Deities
Taoist deities include nature spirits, ancient legendary heroes, humanized planets and stars, Hsien (humans who became immortal and achieved divinity through Taoist practices and teachings, see: 8 Immortals), ancestor spirits (see: Ancestor Worship in Taoism, Joss paper) and animals such as dragons (see: dragon dance), tigers, phoenixes, snakes (see: Animal symbolism) and lions (see: lion dance). All human activities—even such things as drunkenness and robbery—are represented by deities as well.

Heaven, the pantheon (of which the Chinese taoist culture has over 30) mirrored the political system of China at that time with all of its civil servants, bureaucrats, having an army, a royal family, parasitical courtiers, higher or lower ranking deities, who could be promoted or demoted according to their actions (see: 8 Immortals, Chang’e, 
Guan Yu (revered as Saintly Emperor Guan), Guan Yin, Jade Emperor, Kitchen God, Tsai Shen Yeh). Reflecting the order of the Chinese political system, each single department of the pantheon is overseen by a particular deity, spirit or god.
The highest Taoist deity, Yù Huáng -ti (see: Jade Emperor), is associated with the ancient Chinese god Shang Di, ruler over all Heaven, Earth and the Underworld/ Hell. 
The Jade Emperor, also referred to as Yù Huáng -ti, adjudicates and metes out rewards and remedies to actions of saints, the living, and the deceased according to a merit system loosely called the Jade Principles Golden Script. 

 

The seven brightest stars of the constellation are Ursa Major, the Great Bear, also called the Big Dipper.
In Eastern Asia, these stars compose the Northern Dipper. They are colloquially named "The Seven Stars of the Northern Dipper" (Chinese: 北斗七星; pinyin: běidǒu qīxīng). 
Taoist believe that this star constellation is the seat of the celestial bureaucracy of the gods.
Sometimes there are said to be nine stars - two invisible "attendant" stars, one on either side of the star Alkaid.

 

In contrast to the Confucian program of social reform through moral principle, ritual, and government regulation, the true way of restoration for the Taoists consisted in the banishment of learned sageliness and the discarding of wisdom. "Manifest the simple," urged Lao-tzu, "embrace the primitive, reduce selfishness, have few desires."

As the Tao operates impartially in the universe, so should mankind disavow assertive, purposive action. The Taoist life is not, however, a life of total inactivity. It is rather a life of nonpurposive action (wu-wei). Stated positively, it is a life expressing the essence of spontaneity (tzu-jan, "self-so").

See also:

 

 

 

 

Edited by Preety_India

J̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t̸͟͞ j̸͟͞u̸͟͞m̸͟͞p̸͟͞ s̸͟͞t̸͟͞r̸͟͞e̸͟͞e̸͟͞t͞ 

🅗🅔🅐🅣🅗 - 🅜🅨 🅞🅦🅝 🅒🅞🅒🅞🅞🅝 🅞🅕 🅛🅞🅥🅔 🅐🅝🅓 🅟🅔🅐🅒🅔

My twin Flame guardian is a Dragon. 

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