Confusisi Essay

This essay has a total of 1338 words and 5 pages.


Taoism applied to everyday life "Practice not-doing and everything will fall into place"
(Chapter 3). In Taoism this is the concept known as "wu wei". Wei wu wei is the practice
of doing and not-doing. This concept comes from the theory of the Yin and Yang. The Yang,
along with wei, is the practice of doing. The Yin, along with wu wei, is the practice of
not-doing. One compliments the other, and each cannot exist alone. The Tao tells people to
practice not-doing because it will bring happiness in their life. By not-doing, the Tao
means not performing actions, which are unnecessary and uncalled for. People should just
take things as they come in life and they will live a life full of happiness and pleasure.
If you don't interfere with the Tao and let things take their natural course, everything
will work out in your life (Chapter 10). "If powerful men and women could remain centered
in the Tao…all people would be at peace…" (Chapter 32). If you work against your Tao, you
will never find happiness. The Sage practices wu wei. He teaches without words and
performs without actions (Chapter 43). He knows and therefore does not speak (Chapter 56).
Many people mistake conceptual knowledge for the map to the territory. The Sage is our map
to the Tao. He points his finger to show us the way, but does not really tell us what to
do and how to practice Taoism. Lao Tzu's concepts of the Tao can be a guide to rational
living. If one follows these beliefs he is guaranteed happiness in his life. However, it
is very difficult to follow the Tao, even though the teachings are said to be easily
understood and easily put into practice (Chapter 70). The reason the Tao is so difficult
to grasp is because you cannot know that you are practicing it. The Tao is beyond all
words. If you give it words, it does not exist. It is unnamable. If you concentrate on the
Tao, you will never understand it. You cannot think about it, you must just do it. This is
very difficult because people always think about what they do, but this does not work with
the Tao (Chapter 1). You cannot look for the Tao; you cannot listen for the Tao. You must
just accept the idea that it is always there, omnipresent, and you can't see it. This is
all very important because if one cannot understand these first simple steps in Taoism,
they will be lost the rest of the way. In personal life, you should never define yourself.
When you define yourself, you are actually putting limits on yourself. If a man defines
himself as a doctor, he is limiting himself to science. If a man defines himself as a
singer, he is limiting himself to music. By limiting yourself, you are not allowing
yourself to experience life fully (Chapter 24). Also, you should never define any object
because they will always have an opposite. If you define something as "good" then its
opposite is defined as "bad", when in reality it might not be (Chapter 2). When a man is
about to buy a car, he will want to buy a company with a "good name". He has defined one
car as "good" and the rest are "bad". When he realizes he cannot afford the "good" car he
is unhappy. He has to buy a "bad" car. While driving his "bad" car, he thinks about what
people will say. He worries that they will not approve of his new purchase. If the man had
not originally set such high expectations of buying a "good" car, he would not be upset
with his situation. By caring about other people's approval he becomes their "prisoner"
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