Taoism > Founder

The Founder of Taoism

Lao-tzu - the founder of Taoism
Lao-tzu is the presumed author of Tao-te ching
Though one may find Taoist ideas and believes in the centuries before the Warring States period (5th century BC - 3rd century BC) in China, it may be assumed that the true founder of Taoism was Lao-tzu (the Old Sage). He lived and worked as an archivist in Chou, where he met Confucius to talk about rites. 

Lao-tzu is the traditional author of Tao-te ching (The Classic of Tao and its Characteristics), a handbook of wisdom written at the request of the Guardian of the Pass, Yin Hsi.

In his book Lao-tzu developed the main Taoist ideas and concepts such as tao, nondoing, emptiness and fu.

Lao-tzu applied his Taoist philosophy to the human conduct. He tried to describe what Tao is and shaped the life style of the sages in conformity with the immutable laws of the Universe. He even designed the behavior of the political leaders who must follow the Tao as well.

Most of the specialists today believe that Lao-tzu didn't exist as a person and author of Tao-te ching. Lao-tzu would have been the title of the book (ascribed to him) or the name of a group of persons interested in philosophy and wisdom.

Confucius pictures
Confucius met Lao-tzu
in Chou to talk
about rites
Usually we study Taoism in relation with Lao-tzu, his book and his life philosophy as recorded by the Chinese antiquity historian Ssu-ma Ch'ien (145-85 BC).

Thus Taoism is approached like a way of life inspired by the natural course of nature. This approach is actual if we think of the stories that made the most important books inspired by Tao-te ching, such as the Chuang'tzu's and Lieh-tzu's. More of them seem written for modern readers.

Taoism is a way of life, as we already said, inspired by nature; but we must stress that this path may be followed today, in our modern world. It helps us to find the inner balance when dealing with the most confusing problems of our daily life.

Should you wish to know how one can follow this ancient method of living we provide several email courses showing how one can follow the Tao to attain love, health and happiness. Click here to learn more.

Read also:
=> Lao-tzu - biography and wisdom.
Lao-tzu Pictures
Tao-te ching - a short introduction to the content and meaning of the book.
Lao-tzu and Tao-te ching Resources

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