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  2. Laozi, Lao-tzu, and Lao-tse sound exactly the same. The letters are just approximations of the correct pronunciation. For accuracy and communication, having a standard is quite useful. The communists did a few things right, this was one of them.
  3. The current standard is Laozi and Zhuangzi. Pinyin is the current standard for Romanization of Mandarin.
  4. Lao tse or Lao tzu; Chuang tse or Chuang tzu

    Early phonetic notation is based on Cantonese, and now the phonetic notation is in accordance with Putonghua(Mandarin)。
  5. Spirituality and Dao, Chicken and Egg

    I always considered myself a secular thinker as well and my answer is YES! If you are not opening yourself fully, you are missing out on some wisdom. Wisdom is openness. Wisdom is connecting with a much deeper, more subtle, pervasive essence that is only achieved through profound openness. Not really. I had brief run-ins with spirituality as a youngster, often in the form of entheogens and writers like Castaneda, Osho, and Watts. Then I encountered internal Chinese martial arts and qigong which led to Daoist meditation which opened me up to the full potential of spirituality. That subsequently led to my current study and practice of Yungdrung Bön. Not me, it was a combination of reading and Daoist practices - meditation, martial arts, and qigong. Absolutely, no question about it. Same answer applies to martial arts and qigong. Daoism is a way of living, not simply a philosophy. Intellectual understanding is a faint shadow of the direct, personal experience of the nature of oneself and the connection to the Way. One instant of deep spiritual connection is far more meaningful and valuable than all the intellectual understanding of the Way that I could possibly achieve in a lifetime. Think of it like reading everything there is on Earth about the flavor of a mango - the chemistry, first hand accounts, psychological factors, agricultural data, photos, videos, brain scans of people eating mango, everything you can imagine, .... but never tasting a mango. You have some idea - sweet, pungent, tart, funky... And then one day you actually taste a mango... WOW! No information can prepare you for, or replace, the experience. Yes, I read quite a bit before getting deeply into the meditative practices. It was valuable and interesting but pales in comparison to direct experience. Belief (the acceptance of an idea without personal verification) is not necessary, not in magic, not in scripture, not in anything. Faith (trust in the path reinforced by direct experience) is helpful. Meaning is very important, if there is no meaning, there is no trust, no confidence, no personal connection. Without these, how can we put the principles to use in our lives? Daoism is not "just a description of the nature of things and the nature of how they should be." Daoism is not at all concerned with "should," it is concerned with what is. It is far more than a description, it is a guide to a healthy and meaningful life. It is to discover that our mundane life IS magic without the need for belief or even faith (although faith can help to keep you going when practice is very challenging or tiresome). So please investigate Daoism in whatever form makes sense and is accessible to you. The writings are precious but the experiential practices are priceless! I hope you someday learn that for yourself... Good luck to you on your path.
  6. Today
  7. I was just reflecting on how many priceless opportunities exist for learning and practicing. For example, today I was able to participate in live teachings from two different Bön geshes, one in Nepal and one in Germany. Both are open to anyone interested and easily accessible from the comfort of your home if you have a computer and internet connection. In the not too distant past this would have been considered magic.... and it most certainly is! These teachings were highly restricted and even if they could be received, finding the teacher, traveling to meet them, taking time away from responsibilities, finding a way to afford the travel... unimaginable! It occurs to me that perhaps this accessibility is a blessing from the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas to balance all of the negative forces that seem to be at play in the world today. So I simply wanted to share how fortunate I feel to have these opportunities! I send you all my love and respect. _/\__/\__/\_
  8. Spirituality and Dao, Chicken and Egg

    You should always make sure your beliefs are grounded in good objective evidence and your own observation. You are not missing out on anything by not having faith or a belief in magic. There is nothing more than our natural universe, all that is here is natural. Having said that we are just apes on floating space rock. Our science is not nearly as advanced as we believe it to be. There are things we do not believe exist or occur that do indeed exist and occur, but that doesn't make them supernatural. I know that my training in this system has been one of the most profound experiences in my life, and continues to show me just how little we know about reality.
  9. Spirituality and Dao, Chicken and Egg

    I usually get, slow down, pay attention, find balance.
  10. Pelevin I recommend to read. This is the best Russian writer.
  11. Yesterday
  12. Sorry if I offend anyone but if you're not willing to invest the time, effort, and cash to study with a master, you're not going to get very far in Daoist meditation... Sadly, masters are few and far between but they are out there. You can certainly cultivate a life based on Daoist values but Daoist meditation is detail oriented and sophisticated and, to my knowledge, it's never been written down in the form of a usable training manual. In fact, most writings about the training methods are intentionally abstruse and cryptic.
  13. Watching The Birds

    Finally saw the big blue chicken , she was yanking up cattails and dicing crunchy bits for the youngun. Like the pompano, I was starting to think it was one of those things like a mirage or unicorn that only existed in the minds of the beholder. She aint ABA but there they were in all natures glory..... woohooo
  14. 2 cents to add: some teachers capitalize on that dynamic, that is a red flag for sect-leader behavior. Some teachers truly believe this is correct and traditional, promoting the stereotype and likely were either played by a sectleader or had a teacher whom they didn’t understand. If a teacher insists for their students to be part of some inner circle or sucking up with loose promises of a place at the table then this is a red flag for insecurity and it’s not conductive to a very healthy relationship. If you’ve seen ”Kill Bill vol. 2” that summarizes a good vs poor teacher-student relationship: Sure, many teachers can seem a little stiff at first but the dynamic is ideally a respectful and reciprocal friendship, imo a good teacher will open up to a student who can grasp and pay attention, or at least shows dedication and effort to approach their treasures... Chinese teachers drop a lot of hints and gems around them but they often do it so casually and discretely that not everybody notices what just flashed before them. It’s definetly a chance or luck thing, finding a skilled person whom you can understand and who is able to recognize your attention and diligence.
  15. Spirituality and Dao, Chicken and Egg

    I gotta admit , i never asked myself that WWND ! Cheers Oooh, works good.
  16. I predict liverpool will win 4=0

    Is that suppsed to be money?
  18. For a scientific book that tries to reconstruct the form of meditation of the early Taoists see:
  19. Personally I find the old texts hard to understand. Often poetical language written in a foreign language for people in another culture. Seems to me in the beginning, one just sits. Nice to have some live instruction, for posture and a few hints on breathing, but basically for a few months or year or so, one just sits. Over and over, maybe counting there breath, 1 to 10, repeat. When one can sit, with a quiet mind, for an hour or two, perhaps generating some heat in there dantien; can keep some of that emptiness with them during the day.. then its time to look for a teacher to go deeper but to move too fast too soon, might keep a person from getting the fundamentals down. Imo Fundamental #1, is a quiet mind (with sharp awareness).
  20. Do these practices lead to Demonic Possession?

    Hey ! ... that last guy does not live in the sea !
  21. I predict liverpool will win 4=0

    Put some money on it ..... I bet you a
  22. Yes, its a system of teaching and it means ' to receive' or Kabbalah means 'to learn' .... to receive the teachings .
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