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The first item on the Better World Books 2016 Reading Challenge is […]
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Laoism is the first English depiction to distinguish Lao Zi's teachings from Taoism, a native religion of China. Lao Zi ascribes to everything in Taoism, personally, philosophically, and spiritually. But you cannot equate the Tao with Lao Zi. Tao is the Chinese equivalent for the Ultimate, the Way, the Power, and God. Taoism is a collective representation of Chinese beliefs and practices in accordance with the Tao, and enables Laoism as well. Laoism is a personalized teaching with a belief system stressing softness, humility, and weakness in the face of life. It has no dogmatic nor institutional attachment to the shamanistic, ritualistic, and religious practices of Taoism. Laoism is a school of and by itself. Any person, whether scholar or practitioner, who follows Laoism is practically a Laoist himself.
Aside from the the long-lived work of Tao Te Ching, Lao Zi handed down another priceless treasure, namely the Fourteen Character Couplet. This Couplet is an excellent representation of his two volume work, Tao and Te. It is the magic of symbolic and talisman-like representation of Laoist's understanding of the power of Tao and the Action of Te, depicted in his own creative Chinese characters. Each character represents a single step, a stage, and state-of-one-being with the Tao and the loving action of Self. Collectively, they demonstrate one of the most concise and visually spiritual disciplines among all the existing traditions in the world. Now is the time tosharethis treasure, to present its powerful message to all. Laosim is a text on the complete teachings of Lao Zi: both Tao Te Ching and Couplet. This is his legacy to mankind.
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