DaoismNotes

DaoismNotes - Chapter 7 Daoism: The Way of Virtue Our...

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52 C hapter 7 Daoism: The Way of Virtue Our working definition of religion is helpful in the case of Daoism. For some scholars Daoism may appear to be more of a philosophy. Its historical development is not like many of the other religions we are studying. However, it has a core set of basic beliefs by which its adherents interpret their experience. Many of these beliefs are taken from a book written by its founder, Lao-Tzu, the Dao Te Ching , although from the time of Lao-Tzu to the present Daoism has largely become a religion with multiple gods, priests, temples, sacrifices, charms, exorcisms, and magical attempts to prolong life. The basic belief that gives a sense of centrality to the diverse expressions of Daoism is belief in the Dao, which is best translated as “the way.” Not much is known about the life of Lao-Tzu. Here we will study his life as it is understood from the important works of Daoism. According to these sources, he lived in the sixth century B.C. and was born about 50 years before Confucius. It is said that he worked in the royal archive during the time that the Chou dynasty was disintegrating. Tiring of this work, he gave up his job and journeyed Westward where he found a pass in the northwest mountains of
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This note was uploaded on 02/22/2011 for the course REL 100 taught by Professor Woodword during the Fall '08 term at ASU.

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DaoismNotes - Chapter 7 Daoism: The Way of Virtue Our...

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