I chose the name One Beard because I have but one beard that has grown since I was around 20. Sure, I've trimmed it several times, even shaved it completely, but it's growth persists as the Tao persists.
Tao vs Dao
This does not matter though I have a tendancy to use 'T' out of habbit. The Tao that can be named is not the eternal Tao.
I have been a practicing Taoist for approximately 7 years.
I came from a deeply religious Christian family (mother & grandmother are/were pastors) and I embarked on a journey of finding myself at 17 after some troublesome experiences with the religious groups whith which I had been associated and after finding myself a black sheep of sorts within my family. I gave study to Hindu, Buddhism, Sikhism, and even Islam and in all I saw common ties and I found myself searching for the deepest of the deep, what Lao Tzu calls "Darkness within Darkness.." I first came to understand the consept of Tao through the book The Tao is Silent by Raymond M. Smullyan back in college. I was wandering around the book store picking out required reading for the semester and it struck me as something I hadn't explored and I purchased an old well-worn copy that someone had annotated and marked throughout. I admit, I had to read it more than once for my brain to begin to understand such a foreign concept, but once it clicked, it lodged itself firmly into my life as something infinitely deep and wonderous. From there I began consuming everything Alan Watts had to offer (and still often do) somewhat deeming myself a Zen Taoist as a result of his perspectives. Today, I daily study both the Mitchell and Red Pine translations of TaoTeChing and mostly put my thoughts into my moleskein journal as I'm very hesitant to offer opinion or even share my thoughts on matters which I have little-no experience. I'm a reader and a thinker, not a writer or a prophet.
I only recently found this site and after reading several posts and sampling the responses delivered by the community, I would sincerely like to join. I do not consider myself a guru or teacher or even an example to be followed, I'm merely fascinated with my existance since I made the change to follow the Tao and would like to share that with others.
I hope you are well, and I hope to learn much and more.