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The Philosopher
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PostSubject: Taoism Deception !   Thu Jul 02, 2009 2:05 am



Is Taoism Deceptive ?!


I think This will be one of the rare posts that reveal Hidden critical Things in a Philosophical way about Taoism !!.

Taoism and the Tao

The philosophy of Taoism is traditionally held to have originated in China with a man named Lao-tzu. Although most scholars doubt that he was an actual historical figure, tradition dates his life from 604-517 B.C. The story goes that Lao-tzu, "saddened by his people's disinclination to cultivate the natural goodness he advocated," decided to head west and abandon civilization. As he was leaving, the gatekeeper asked if he would write down his teachings for the benefit of society. Lao-tzu consented, retired for a few days, and returned with a brief work called Tao-Te Ching, "The Classic of the Way and Its Power."It "contains 81 short chapters describing the meaning of Tao and how one should live according to the Tao." The term Tao is typically translated into English as "way", but it can also be translated as "path," "road" or "course."

The chief object of philosophical Taoism "is to live in a way that conserves life's vitality by not expending it in useless, draining ways, the chief of which are friction and conflict."One does this by living in harmony with the Tao, or Way, of all things: the way of nature, of society, and of oneself.




God and the Tao


After Lao-tzu, the most important representative of philosophical Taoism was a man named Chuang-tzu, believed to have lived sometime between 399-295 B.C. He is the author of a text called the Chuang Tzu. While the thought of these two men is certainly different, there are also important similarities. One of these concerns the relationship of the Tao to the physical universe. In words reminiscent of Tao-Te Ching, the Chuang Tzu declares, "Before heaven and earth came into being, Tao existed by itself from all time. . . . It created heaven and earth."

The most interesting part of this statement is the assertion that the Tao created heaven and earth. How are we to understand this? Does Chuang-tzu view the Tao as Creator in the same sense in which Christians would apply this term to God? Probably not.
Both the Tao and God are similarly credited with creating heaven and earth. This similarity may offer an initial point of contact between Christians and Taoists, a way to begin a meaningful dialogue about the nature of ultimate reality.

In the same way, we also need to notice how the Tao differs from a biblical view of God. The greatest difference is that the Tao is impersonal whereas God is personal. The Tao is like a force, principle or energy; the Christian God is a personal being. It's crucial to realize that ultimate reality cannot be both personal and impersonal at the same time and in the same sense. Let's look at the reasons to believe that ultimate reality is personal.


Morality and the Tao

Philosophical Taoism teaches that the Tao, or ultimate reality, is impersonal. If this is so, then what becomes of morality? Can an impersonal force be the source of objective moral values that apply to all men, at all times, in all places? Is an impersonal force capable of distinguishing between good and evil? Or can such distinctions only be made by personal beings? And what of that haunting sense of obligation we all feel to do what is good and avoid what is evil?

Such questions are important because each of us, if we're honest, recognizes that there is an objective distinction between moral good and evil. Such distinctions are not ultimately dependent on our preferences or feelings; they are essential to the very nature of reality. But the Tao is neither capable of making such distinctions, nor of serving as the source of such objective moral values. Only a personal agent can fill such roles. "The ultimate form of the Tao is beyond moral distinctions."

The doctrine of moral relativism is explicitly taught in the writings of Chuang-tzu. He writes, "In their own way things are all right . . . generosity, strangeness, deceit, and abnormality. The Tao identifies them all as one." This statement helps clarify why the notion of a personal God is inconsistent with Taoist philosophy. Persons make moral distinctions between right and wrong, good and evil. But according to Chuang-tzu, the impersonal Tao identifies them all as one.

This has serious implications for philosophical Taoists. If the goal of the Taoist sage is to live in harmony with the Tao, then shouldn't moral distinctions be abandoned? If the Tao makes no such distinctions, why should its followers do so?

Biblical Christianity, however, teaches that there are such things as objective moral values. The source of such values is the eternal, transcendent, holy God of the Bible. Unlike the Tao, the Christian God is not beyond moral distinctions.

Another interesting statement from the Tao Te Ching occurs at the end of chapter 62:

Why did the ancients so treasure this DAO? Is it not because it has been said of it: "Whosoever asks will receive; whosoever has sinned will be forgiven"? Therefore is DAO the most exquisite thing on earth.

This passage also ascribes personal attributes to the impersonal Tao. Specifically, the Tao is said to forgive sinners. This raises two difficulties. First, "forgiveness" means that a moral standard has been broken. But the Tao is beyond such moral distinctions!"Second, only persons can exercise forgiveness. An impersonal force is incapable of such a thing.

Jesus spoke of God's deep love when He said, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." (John 3:16)

Since only persons are capable of love and forgiveness, it seems more reasonable to believe that the personal God of the Bible, rather than the impersonal Tao of Taoism, is the ultimate source of such precious gifts.
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"He who fights monsters should see to it that in the process, he does not become a monster. And when you look into the abyss, the abyss also looks into you." - Nietzche
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PostSubject: Re: Taoism Deception !   Sat Jul 04, 2009 12:23 am

Thanks Very Happy
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Dewachen
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PostSubject: Re: Taoism Deception !   Thu Aug 06, 2009 2:29 am


God and the Tao




Q: The most interesting part of this statement is the assertion that the Tao created heaven and earth. How are we to understand this?



A: I would say Tao is just a term made up by man just as the God is a term made up by man. We have a tendency in our linear lives to think of ourselves as separate from others. Yet I think it would be wise to assume the universe to be impersonal from our limited personal subjective perspective. Since in order for an objective universe or creative force to manifest there must be a holistic unity between all things by which the only way the whole organism to find meaning would be from multiple individual perspectives which are still linked to a holistic framework. Therefore one could think of the universe as being like a teaching machine where our own individual creative potential is manifested in many ways such as a creature adapting to its environment in evolution. Quantum Teleportation seems to be yet another clue to substantiate that theory. I always find it amazing the debates between creationism and evolution when people ask me which I believe. When I reply I believe in both they don’t understand how I can believe in both since they believe it has to be either one or the other to which I disagree. It really breaks down to what we believe God to be? Christianity thinks of God as being a separate individual from our own selves. If that were the case how could God have any influence upon our lives? In the lords prayer Christ taught to his disciples “Thy Kingdom come,
thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven”
This implies as above so below. If that is the case then it should be apparent that one can not change another persons mind for them which would defy free will, and there are so many differing points of view and conflicts in our world. So by this God would be impersonal since s/he could not change our minds for us if s/he wanted to. However, when looked at from a holistic framework by which we are all a part of the source the equation becomes much more dynamic and far more beautiful, order evolving into disorder and evolution such as we observe in nature. However, there seems to be a trump card in that light is the messenger particle in a wave of probabilities similar to fermions being in the form of a particles behaving in a wave of probabilities. There appears to be something more to reality that science as yet does not understand. However, I still believe it is important to pursue science in its pure form free from entropic predispositions. My personal belief is that there is a mega universe which existed before this universe with many different dimensions and that light is the key the holistic connection we all share and the answers are much deeper than any religion on the face of this earth and that diversity is an important aspect to spirituality or what inspires us but we should do our own work rather than relying on external factors, for we are all inevitably on the same path which is the will to understand and grow to the inner potential we all share and how all of this intersects.
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PostSubject: Re: Taoism Deception !   Sun Aug 09, 2009 5:34 am

I used to read a lot on Taoism so maybe I can shed some light.

Tao and Jehovah are not the same. God, as Jehovah, is a person, as clearly described in the book of Genesis as having footsteps which were heard whilst he was walking in the garden.

Tao is not really something that can be approached in the manner of western intellectualism, so it's not really up for debate in a forum, or any kind of explanation, but here goes. The Tao Te Ching says that Tao cannot be spoken of, because it is impossible. Tao is beyond words and the ten thousand things (the universe etc) all come from it. Tao is not a person, Tao is the Way. That's the closest translation of the word Tao, but the Tao Te Ching also advises us that Tao cannot be named. So what is the use of the word Tao and the various works about Tao/ism? A Taoist would say that it is a finger pointing to the moon, and that the scriptures of Taoism are valuable inasmuch as they allow one to follow Tao, but to a Taoist they are not sacred, they are just tools. There's even an incident in the Chuang Tzu where a carpenter mocks a prince who is always studying Taoist books, and tells him that all the sages are dead old men, and their works are dusty and irrelevant. Taoism is a practise before a philosophy.

Taoism is an incredibly difficult subject to understand, and I won't really say much more, to leave you to learn for yourselves about both the theory and the cultural context if this interests you.
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PostSubject: Re: Taoism Deception !   Sun Aug 09, 2009 5:41 pm


In Washington state a house I was living in was being foreclosed and the night before I was to leave for Arizona I looked up in the sky at a cloud bank rolling in and the Taoist symbol of yin and yang was drawn into the clouds. One could not draw it better on paper. The clouds were rolling in from the ocean in the west with a perfect little clear circle in the cloud formation exactly where it should be and perfectly round. The other portion of the night sky was perfectly clear the stars shining and a perfect little cloud exactly round and the same size as the clear spot. Never saw such a perfect symbol designed by nature. Has no relevance in the debate but I just thought I would mention it.




Another experience prior to this when I had to get the house ready to sell before foreclosure I had a great deal of work to do under the house with the foundation as well as digging a great deal of dirt out from the bottom of the house. One night I had the idea to stay up all night and complete the work because I didn’t want to be under the house if an earthquake hit. I completed it and the next day there was an earthquake which did quite a bit of damage in Olympia, WA. If I did not complete it that night I would have been under the house at that time.



These sort of things have happened many times throughout my life and these really are not even good examples.
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PostSubject: Re: Taoism Deception !   Sun Aug 09, 2009 6:01 pm

Dewachen wrote:
In Washington state a house I was living in was being foreclosed and the night before I was to leave for Arizona I looked up in the sky at a cloud bank rolling in and the Taoist symbol of yin and yang was drawn into the clouds. One could not draw it better on paper. The clouds were rolling in from the ocean in the west with a perfect little clear circle in the cloud formation exactly where it should be and perfectly round. The other portion of the night sky was perfectly clear the stars shining and a perfect little cloud exactly round and the same size as the clear spot. Never saw such a perfect symbol designed by nature. Has no relevance in the debate but I just thought I would mention it.



Another experience prior to this when I had to get the house ready to sell before foreclosure I had a great deal of work to do under the house with the foundation as well as digging a great deal of dirt out from the bottom of the house. One night I had the idea to stay up all night and complete the work because I didn’t want to be under the house if an earthquake hit. I completed it and the next day there was an earthquake which did quite a bit of damage in Olympia, WA. If I did not complete it that night I would have been under the house at that time.



These sort of things have happened many times throughout my life and these really are not even good examples.

Yea, I know what you mean. That's pretty cool. It's stuff like that that made me lose interest in Taoism, incidentally. Whilst Taoism isn't as nihilistic as Buddhism, it still does deny personality.
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