Taoism is one of the oldest religions in the world, and it has anumber of philosophical assumptions that the followers are expectedto embrace. Its origin can be traced back to China in 4th century BCEwhere its founders borrowed a lot from the school of Yingyang thatwere also known as the Naturalists. In fact, the religion oftenstresses on simplicity, and its members often try to align theirbehaviors with the universe. This essay will illustrate theprinciples, texts, and practices that are unique from otherphilosophical traditions in the world.
The Taoism doctrines make them unique since they have certain beliefsthat act as pillars in guiding its followers. The ethics are anessential part, and they are useful in determining their behaviorsince they define what is wrong and right. For instance, Tao and Telook at the way or even the path that the believers follow whilepursuing their goals (Taoism, n.d.). It also insists that people needto consider the source of all the things in the universe. Besidesthat, Wu-wei shows that people should not interfere with the naturalsystem since they are supposed to understand the harmony as opposedto engaging in harmful activities (Taoism, n.d.). The ethics also doassert that people should embrace naturalness that is also translatedas simplicity. Hence, everyone is expected to ignore greed orselfishness since they are vices associated with evil deeds. Lastly,the three treasures are also a crucial part of Taoism. They includemoderation, humility, and compassion that are the virtues that everyfollow should adopt in being a better person. In particular, thedoctrines are an essential aspect since they set out the guidelinesthat everyone is expected to follow in the daily activities.
The texts and the practices also remain to be important aspects ofthe philosophical tradition. In particular, the writings include theTao Te Ching that was created by Laozi and it reminds the followerswhy nature is still a crucial part. It also tells people to use thesmall means they have in reaching greater heights. Besides that,other essential documents include the Zhuangzi and Daozang thathighlight the Taoism thoughts (Taoism, n.d.). In this case, theyoffer the guidance that the followers need and store some of theteachings that are influential in their daily activities. A number ofpractices are also distinct with this group of people and reveal howthey engage in some of their traditions. First, the believers areencouraged to rely on a vegetarian diet and occasional fasting inorder to find a way of relating to their natural surroundings. Theyalso have multiple rituals that include Qingming Festival where theyshould make sacrifices that will satisfy the spirits (Taoism, n.d.).The occasions result in the slaughtering of the ducks and pigs too.Lastly, the physical cultivation is also another common practiceamong the followers since they are able to connect with the cosmicforces. Apart from that, the activities such as martial arts arehelpful in improving their physical health as well.
In conclusion, the doctrines, texts, and practices associated withTaoism are crucial in defining how different the philosophicaltradition is. In fact, the principles provide the ethics that guidetheir practice and define the wrong activities that they shouldavoid. The naturalness is also an essential part since the religionurges its members to embrace simplicity and ignore any evil deeds.The texts that have recorded various Taoism thoughts and teachingsare also crucial since they remind the followers of what they shouldadopt. Lastly, practices such as the sacrifices and the martial artsare also quite common among the groups. All in all, some of thesebeliefs and activities set the Taoists apart from other philosophicaltraditions too.
Taoism (n.d.). Retrieved 18th January, 2017 fromWikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taoism#Tao_Te_Ching