Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu

Tao Te Ching

A lucid translation of the well-known Taoist classic by a leading scholar-now in a Shambhala Pocket Library edition. Written more than two thousand years ago, the Tao Teh Ching, or -The Classic of the Way and Its Virtue, - is one of the true classics of the world of spiritual literature. Traditionally attributed to the legendary -Old Master, - Lao Tzu, the Tao Teh Ching teaches that the qualities of the enlightened sage or ideal ruler are identic...

Details Tao Te Ching

TitleTao Te Ching
Release DateAug 28th, 1989
GenrePhilosophy, Nonfiction, Religion, Classics, Spirituality, Poetry

Reviews Tao Te Ching

  • trivialchemy
    The book that can be reviewed is not the constant book.The review which reviews can be neither full of review nor lacking.But as the river changes course over seasons must the reviewer neither review nor not review, but follow the constant review.
  • Gerry
    I'm an unbeliever and have been since the first time I played hooky from Sunday services and the Eye in the Sky didn’t say boo. So it may seem strange that I’m reviewing the Tao Te Ching, the widely known and influential Taoist text, written by Lao-Tzu and poetically translated in this edition by Stephen Mitchell. For me, the Tao Te Ching is more folk wisdom than religious treatise and is more useful than a million sermons.Where the Tao Te Ch...
  • Ahmad Sharabiani
    Tao Te Ching, Lao Tzu The Tao Te Ching, also known by its pinyin romanization Dao De Jing, is a Chinese classic text traditionally credited to the 6th-century BC sage Laozi. The text's authorship, date of composition and date of compilation are debated. The oldest excavated portion dates back to the late 4th century BC, but modern scholarship dates other parts of the text as having been written—or at least compiled—later than the earliest por...
  • Dolors
    “The Tao is always nameless” (Chapter 71)Trying to narrow down the philosophy of the Tao Te Ching with limiting words is to violate its primordial essence. How can one describe the Universe, the natural order of things, the incessant flowing from being to non-being, the circular unity of a reality traditionally mismatched in dualistic terms? The Tao Te Ching doesn’t provide answers because there needn’t be questions, just the harmony of m...
  • Burt
    This is, by far, my favorite translation of the Tao Te Ching. I own a few others and they're all well and good, but this one is the one I continually read from and refer to when people ask me about the Tao.The translation is well done, it captures the nature of the text well, and it flows fairly evenly. It's not overly flowery or ornate, it gives you the basics of what you need to understand the various entries and assist in understanding what Ta...
  • Eddie Watkins
    There are many translations of the Taoteching, nearly every one of which is probably worth reading, but this is my favorite version. I can’t attest to the accuracy of the translation, but having read so many different translations of the same text I feel like in some strange way I have a grasp of the original; as if a blank space (the Chinese original) has been given shape and definition by all the English versions surrounding it. But anyway......
  • Gerrie Williams
    This is an amazing. I've read many books out there and this is the best one. Very enjoyable read! I highly recommend it. I bought this book at discounted price from here: https://www.amazon.com/Tao-Te-Ching-L...
  • Florencia
    Concatenated thoughts. Review #1 - #2 They come to be and he claims no possession of them, He works without holding on, Accomplishes without claiming merit. Because he does not claim merit, His merit does not go away. The Tao Te Ching is a classical text credited to Chinese philosopher and writer Lao Tzu (6th century) and on which Taoism is based. It consists of 81 short chapters written in poetic form which, using a pithy language brimming wit...
  • Bruce
    I'm always reading this little book containing the essence of wisdom. For years I've read it again and again, one chapter every morning.
  • Florencia
    Concatenated thoughts. Review #1 - #2 Things arise and she lets them come;things disappear and she lets them go.She has but doesn't possess,acts but doesn't expect. The Tao Te Ching is a classical text credited to Chinese philosopher and writer Lao Tzu (6th century) and on which Taoism is based. It consists of 81 short chapters written in poetic form which, using a pithy language brimming with evocative and, at times, repetitive contradictions,...
  • Heidi Parton
    This version irritates me a lot, largely because of Stephen Mitchell's arrogance in writing it (I'll go into that in a bit). This is not a translation (which Mitchell was at least gracious enough to make clear in the back of the book); it's a translation of various translations. The problem with this is that a translation of a translation turns out the same way that a copy of a copy does: while some of the original words and phrases are identifia...
  • 7jane
    (review after rereading:)This book's contents and history have both a sense of vagueness, but not in a bad way, in my opinion. It's somewhat uncertain when it was written (circa 4th-3rd century BC), the author's life details are largely invented, and the existence of the author is not quite certain either (Lao Tzu is just his title, and also it's not known if the text is by one author, or a group of authors worked over some years). It was first t...
  • Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
    This was immensely interesting to read, though I found myself somewhat aggravated by the passivism that ran through the writing. It's almost like a poetical treatise on humility, but what of ambition and a drive to make the world a better place? Should we all accept our station in life and never aim to improve? I think not. It accepts things as they are (however they are) and cannot conceive of a better future. Everything should stay the same, an...
  • Farhan Khalid
    When people see things as beautiful, ugliness is createdWhen people see things as good, evil is createdThe master leads by emptying people's mindThe Tao is like an empty vesselIt can never be emptied and can never be filledMaster doesn’t take sidesThe spirit of emptiness is immortalThe location makes the dwelling goodDepth of understanding makes the mind goodA kind heart makes the giving goodIntegrity makes the government goodAccomplishment mak...
  • Brian
    4.24.19I read this translation by Sam Torode every day on my phone, with a hard copy of another translation I will review soon. The simplicity of Torode's translation makes it my favorite so far and lines up with the Taoist philosophy of simplicity. I may consider other works translated by Torode. He has some interesting works out there, such as "The Song of Solomon."Update: 3.14.18Third translation I've read, my favorite of the three. I love thi...
  • ἀρχαῖος (arkhaîos)
    This version of the Dao De Jing, translated by Richard John Lynn, is highly recommended to those who are not looking for the touchy feely Laozi. Rather it is a translation for those interested in ancient Chinese thought. A wonderful translation.The Dao De Jing was probably written, by author or authors unknown, in the fourth century B.C.E. and "is primarily addressed to the ruler who would be a sage-king and is mainly concerned with achieving the...
  • Onaiza Khan
    This is just mindblowing.
  • Jeremy
    This has got to be one of the most perennially beguiling, elliptical things ever written. And it seems all the more mysterious to me because so much of it is couched as this extremely practical, almost Machiavellian political advice. Having been schooled entirely in the western intellectual tradition, with its notions of hierarchy, dualism and progression (historical, socio/cultural or otherwise), this was a complete mind-fuck to me. It sort of r...
  • Evan
    The description of this book is wrong:"Like Stephen Mitchell, acclaimed author and poet Ursula K. Le Guin has attempted a nonliteral, poetic rendition of the Tao Te Ching"It's nothing like Mitchell's pretty but totally opaque translation. LeGuin gives you readable ideas, arguments in poetry, a philosophy to ponder. Of all the translations I have encountered, this is the only one that gives you a point of entry into the rich treasury of ideas in t...
  • Veronique
    “A man with outward courage dares to die; a man with inner courage dares to live.” I’ve had this book for years and only now found the inkling to have a look. It is very slim and can be read quickly, although as all poetry, it takes time to properly ingest...Lao Tzu seems to like 'twisting' words from noun to verb and vice versa. In that fashion, I was reminded of one of my favourite poems from Emily Dickinson (Much Madness is divinest Sens...
  • James
    The Tao Te Ching is a book that cannot be read directly. Unfortunately, I have little experience reading books indirectly, so I found this a difficult book to read, end even more difficult to discern what was being said by the author. A friend told me that he thought Heraclitus, the Greek pre-Socratic philosopher, was somewhat like Lao Tzu. Heraclitus said "you can't step in the same river twice". He believed that reality was a flux composed of a...
  • Krystal
    A short read but worth taking the time with.I really enjoyed mulling over the short passages, and taking the time to re-read them and really think about what the words meant. So many incredibly great lines, full of inspiration.It will confuse people looking for face-value prose but for the deep thinkers this will really challenge you to think about life in all its intricacies, and to question your own nature. Great read.Highly recommend for the m...
  • Vipassana
    It is by being alive to difficulty that one can avoid it. As much as I wished to write a review for Tao Te Ching, I'd abandoned the prospect of writing a review a couple of days ago. Too many changes over the past few days that I couldn't summon the will to write as I had intended to. To bring a little peace, I opened my journal to write and my eyes fell to the last line I'd written, the line I've quoted from Tao Te Ching, and it almost magically...
  • Rob
    highlights:3 - not collecting treasures prevents stealing.13- accept disgrace willingly23- he who does not trust will not be trusted46- he who knows that enough is enough will always have enough57- the more rules and regulations, the more thieves and robbers there will belowlights: eh, pretty much the whole translation. i guess this version is popular because it has nice calligraphy of the original chinese and BW photos of nature accompanying the...
  • Mimi
    Interesting in that round-about way, the way ambiguous wordplay in poetry tend to be. Overall though it couldn't hold my attention for long. I had to stop and restart a page several times because my mind wandered. It had nothing to do with the content of the writing, but rather the soothing rhythmic "beat" that made it easy for me to not focus. Half the time I didn't even realized I was doing it until I reached a photo page. This book might be be...
  • Darwin8u
    The Tao Te Ching definitely shines without dazzling. It fits in for me with Meditations by Marcus Aurelius, The Wisdom Books: Job, Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes, and the Sermon on the Mount. Books of universal wisdom, truth, and peace that should be read again and again and again. Straightforward words often do sound paradoxical.
  • Gabrielle
    I knew Ursula Le Guin was interested in Taoism : one only has to read “The Left Hand of Darkness” (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...), her Earthsea stories (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...), or even “The Dispossessed” (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...) to see an ever-present underlying theme of balance, of difference and unity – and of compassion. But I had no idea she had actually written an English version of t...
  • Alex
    To a Westerner, the Tao Te Ching presents another perspective for understanding meaning and effectiveness. For example, the Tao Te Ching shows how movement towards progress creates movement against progress, "Do not exalt the worthy, and the people will not compete... Do not display objects of desire, and the people's minds will not be disturbed. Therefore the ordering of the sage empties their minds, fills their bellies... and causes the wise on...
  • João Fernandes
    An ode to apathy as a means of utopia. If people are simple and cannot think and the rulers are good then the empire will work. Except this would be the death of humanity's constant evolution and revolution. I could literally see this being handed out in Orwell's Oceania, that's how far off I find this philosophy.