Lao Zi - The Founder of Taoism

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<BR> Lao Zi, was born in the Chinese state of Chu, but his date of birth is unknown. He was <br>the founder of Taoism, but very little is actually known about him. According to some historical <br>works, his original name was LiEr. He was the keeper of archives in the Zhou court. Zhou was <br>the name of the dynasty that ruled the states during the time period between the Spring and <br>Autumn Period and the Warring States Period that followed. When he saw the decline of the <br>Zhou dynasty, he left his post to live the life of a hermit. On his way out he had to pass a gate. It <br>was here that the gatekeeper, who had heard of his teachings, begged him to write a book before <br>he left. He agreed to do so, and he wrote a book of about 5,000 words that is called the Dao De <br>Jing, or generally called the Lao Zi. After he finished the book, he went away, and nobody <br>knows exactly where he went or when he died. There is only a record of him having a discussion <br>with Confucius after he left. <br> The small book that he wrote, the Dao De Jing or Lao Zi, is written verse, it is said to <br>contain great wisdom. It has been studied by Chinese scholars of all ages after him, and many <br>notes and commentaries have been written to attempt to explain the meaning of every line in the <br>book. It goes over many different philosophical and practical questions, such as the origin and <br>working of the universe, the correct way to live and behave, the laws that govern the change and <br>movement of things, and the way to govern a state. This book is split up into two main sections, <br>the Dao and the De. Out of the total 81 chapters the Dao part is 37 chapters long while the De <br>contains 44 chapters. <br> Dao translated means the way or path. It is the source of all, it is the eternal, invisible,

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