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Taoist Anecdotes

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Topaz Harris

on 13 May 2014

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Transcript of Taoist Anecdotes

Rooted in the ancient Chinese systems of beliefs, influenced by primitive shamanism and observation of natural cycles, Taoism recognizes Laozi as its founder and Zhuangzi as one of its most brilliant representatives. Early Taoism developed as an original answer to the bitter debates during the philosophically fertile time of the Hundred Schools of Thought, corresponding to the Warring States period. It was a time of seemingly endless warfare and chaos. This turbulent era gave rise to a kind of naturalistic quietism in accordance with the "process" of the universe: Tao. Action through inaction (wei wu wei), the power of emptiness, detachment, receptiveness, spontaneity, the strength of softness, the relativism of human values and the search for a long life, are some of its preferred themes.
Taoism
By: Liu An
The journey is the reward.
Cultural Background of the Anecdotes
The Lost Horse
Background
A man who lived on the northern frontier of China was skilled in interpreting events. One day for no reason, his horse ran away to the nomads across the border. Everyone tr to console him, but his father said,"What makes you so sure this isn't a blessing?" Some months later his horse returned, bringing a splendid nomad stallion. Everyone congratulated him, but his father said,"What makes you so sure this isn't a disaster?"
Their household was richer by a fine horse, which the son loved to ride. One day he fell and broke his hip. Everyone tried to console him, but his father said,"What makes you so sure this isn't a blessing?"
A year later the nomads came in force across the border, and every able-bodied man took his bow and went into battle. The chinese frontiers-men lost nine of every ten men. Only because the son was lame did the father and son survive to take care of each other. Truly, blessings turns to disaster, and disaster to blessing; the changes have no end, nor can the mystery be fathomed.
Meaning: Sometimes the things we believe are bad can actually work in our favor. There will always be change in life and you must appreciate it, regardless if it appears bad on the surface.
Taoism is a philosophical, ethical, and religious tradition of Chinese origin that emphasizes living in harmony with the Tao. The word Tao means "way", "path", or "principle" and can be found in Chinese philosophies and religions other than Taoism. Tao denotes something that is both the source and the driving force behind everything that exists.
Period 2
English IV
Topaz H. Naeemah S. Samantha B.
By: Lieh Tzu
The Missing Axe
This is the end,finally...
A man whose axe was missing suspected his neighbor's son. The boy walked like a thief, looked like a thief, and spoke like a thief. But the man found his axe while he was digging in the valley, and the next time he saw his neighbor's son, the boy walked, looked, and spoke like any other child.
We hope you enjoyed it !
Taoist Anecdotes
Meaning
: Never assume or accuse someone of something without evaluating yourself first. In most cases, we are the ones in the wrong and are the cause of our misfortune. The man could not explain where his axe had gone so he blamed it on the first possible logical solution, which was a bad idea. It shows that the world is unknowingly prejudice towards others for no legitimate reason.
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