What is Daoism (Taoism)?

Daoism (Taoism) is a way of life, it is both a science and a spiritual path. Practicing Daoism (Taoism) involves, broadening one's understanding of nature and it's ways, in-order to pursue balance and harmony within it. The Universe is alive and the human is a reflection of it. The root of Daoism (Taoism) is, naturally, the Dao (Tao). Studying nature, is as studying the Dao's (Tao's) anatomy, studying nature's ways, is as studying the Dao's (Tao's) physiology. To understand its spirit, the Dao (Tao) needs to be experienced, for words cannot describe it.

The word Dao (Tao) 道 literally means "path" or "way", and has a much deeper meaning in Daoism (Taoism). In Daoism (Taoism), the Dao (Tao) is the original, everlasting, spontaneous way, that things began and still are. Dao (Tao) is the governing force that balances the universe and gives it life. The only way to gain a deep understanding of the Dao (Tao), is through following it, participating in it, cultivating it and acquiring De (Teh).

De (Teh) 德 which translates as "virtue" is a means to cultivate Dao (Tao). The basic practice of acquiring De (Teh) involves doing good deeds, helping others and never preventing others from doing good. Laozi (Lao Tsu) emphasized the relationship between Dao (Tao) and De (Teh) in his book "Dao De Jing (Tao Teh Ching)", literally translated "The Book of Dao and De".

Laozi (Lao Tsu) is the first most prominent Daoist (Taoist) who above all has contributed to the development of Daoism (Taoism). Zhuangzi (Chuang Tsu) is well recognized as the second.

Laozi's (Lao Tsu's), "Dao De Jing (Tao Te Ching)" and Zhuangzi's (Chuang Tsu's), self titled book "Zhuangzi", are the most influential and widely studied writings throughout Daoism (Taoism). The writings of Loazi (Lao Tsu) and Zhuangzi (Chuang Tsu) express concepts such as humility, naturalness, vitality, harmony, cultivation, moderation, frugalness, flexibility, spontaneity, fluidity, non-absolutes and Wu-wei, which make up the fundamentals of Daoist (Taoist) practice.

Wu-wei which literally means "non-action" is one of the basic concepts in Daoism (Taoism). To Daoist (Taoist) Wu-wei means, letting things take there natural course and doing nothing that interferes with that natural course. Wu-wei is like water, with its yielding nature. Water is formless and so, moves effortlessly around obstacles to its destination. Water is soft and yet is able to carve through stone. Water is patient and takes its time, so when it does carve through stone, the marks it leaves are smooth and natural.

The purpose of practicing Wu-wei is to align oneself with the Dao (Tao), unveiling the subtle and intangible power from within nature. The universe functions harmoniously by it self. Without interference of its ways, things will naturally unfold in a harmonious manner. With interference of its ways disaster often occurs. One might think of it as the "Butterfly Effect".

The life-force of the cosmos divided in to two forces, which oppose and at the same time depend on and compliment each other. These two opposing forces "Yin" and "Yang" create and constantly effect all life. yin and yang constantly move in cycles as shown in the Taiji diagram or "Yin and Yang Symbol" as it's called in the west. In Daoism (Taoism) one seeks to be in tune with the cosmos and its natural cycles. Understanding the opposing forces and finding a balance between them is of great importance. Several practical methods of how to attain this balance are mentioned in the Yellow Emperor's Canon. The Yellow Emperor's Canon is one of the most practical guides on cultivating health and finding unity with the rhythms of the cosmos, please refer to the "Daoist Classics" section of our website for additional related information.

 

Over all Daoism (Taoism) is the pursuit of unity between humanity and the natural universe. Only when that unity is found, will true harmony exist.

The Dao (Tao) is everlasting and unchanging, but people's perception of it and practice of cultivating it, is not. As a result several schools and sects of Daoism (Taoism) have emerged over the centuries. We will be adding a tree of those schools with descriptions soon.

Thank you, for visiting our website, please, revisit us, for more updates, in the near future.