>Wow, Tao

> Two (rhyming) words for you - wow, Tao (pronounced "dow," want to ensure you sound intelligent). In honor of my continuing study of the sacred texts of various religions I continue with the Tao to get me excited for my trip to China (I leave today). I love it. It's mysterious, simple, and beautifully written.

Tao can be translated as the way or the path. The book explains it is indefinable and instead has to be experienced to understand it. It's a force of the universe and Taoists goals are to align themselves with the Tao. Reading the book forces the reader to use a part of the brain based on just being and not just logical thinking (something I believe a lot of us have a difficult time doing). It "refers to a power which envelops, surrounds and flows through all things, living and non-living. The Tao regulates natural processes and nourishes balance in the Universe. It embodies the harmony of opposites (i.e. there would be no love without hate, no light without dark, no male without female.)"

I love the concept called "wu wei," which means allowing nature to take its course. Other favorite passages include:
-The journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step.
-If you want to know me, look inside your heart.
-If you want to accord with the Tao, do your job, then let go.

The founder of Taoism is believed by many to be Lao-Tse (604-531 BCE), a contemporary of Confucius. Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism make up the three main religions practiced in China. None of these religions believe in an outside deity, which they believe can't be represented as one specific thing. These traditions have intrigued for quite a while because they focus on inner meditation and outside observation.

My first insight into Chinese philosophy was when my mom quoted, "He who live in glass house must dress in basement." (I don't know which is more alarming to me, that someone would have a glass house or that this is how she convinced me to close my windows when I get dressed.)

Today I'm grateful for my trip to China, green smoothies, Chelsea Handler.