There is a growing trend in the United States and the World to promote Atheism as the only rational and logical conclusion with regards to the age old questions: Where did everything come from and Is there a God? There have been marches on Washington, rallies in Universities and countless magazines, newspapers, television programs and doctoral thesis promoting Atheism and the belief that there is no God. In this article, we will address what the world’s oldest philosophy & science has to say about God.
Taoism has always been concerned with following/walking with God, many writers, scholars and sages have referred to God in many different ways. Some prefer; the One, the Source, the Sage, the Creator; throughout time, however, the preferred method was to simply call it Tao. Tao refers to the One and Only God. Let us examine a few sections of the Tao Teh Ching and see what Lao Tzu, the great Taoist sage had to say about this One Source, Tao.
Tao Teh Ching translated by Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English:
The greatest Virtue is to follow Tao and Tao alone.
The Tao is elusive and intangible.
Oh, it is intangible and elusive, and yet within is image.
Oh, it is elusive and intangible, and yet within is form.
Oh, it is dim and dark, and yet within is essence.
This essence is very real, and therein lies faith.
From the very beginning until now its name has never been forgotten.
Thus I perceive creation.
How do I know the way of creation?
Because of this.
Look, it cannot be seen- it is beyond form.
Listen, it cannot be heard- it is beyond sound.
Grasp, it cannot be held- it is intangible.
These three are indefinable;
Therefore they are joined in one.
From above it is not bright;
From below it is not dark:
An unbroken thread beyond description.
It returns to nothingness.
The form of the formless,
The image of the imageless,
It is called indefinable and beyond imagination.
Stand before it and there is no beginning.
Follow it and there is no end.
Stay with the ancient Tao,
Move with the present.
Knowing the ancient beginning is the essence of Tao.
The ancient sages did not envision God as an old man seated high above the earth, issuing punishments (lightning bolts etc…) when they sinned. Since Tao is omnipresent, it is everywhere, inside all of us and everything, as long as we are alive, because of this you can experience God in your daily life.
According to Dr. Stephen Chang (The Great Tao p. 15) “Tao is God, according to the Chinese, who translate Gospel John 1:1 thus: ‘In the beginning was the Tao, and the Tao was with God, and the Tao was God.’ According to the English translation of the Bible, the Word is God. And according to the original Greek version of the Bible, Logos is God. The word Logos generally connotes life, light, creation, power, wisdom, love, healing, spirit, force, knowledge, rational, logic, reality, and method. The Chinese word Tao has the same connotations as the word Logos. That is why the word Tao was used in the Chinese Biblical translation.”
To understand the origin and the Source, God or Tao, we must imagine what is was like in the beginning, before anything else existed, the state of pure being that preceded the creation of the cosmos/universe. If we go back far enough, even before the Big Bang event, we would find a state that the ancient sages would often write about: “What thought could be the only thought that could possibly arise in that infinite state of omnipresence that preceded the creation of the cosmos? We know that a thought arises due to its perception of an object in the world but what would be the nature of a thought if the world of objects had not yet been created?”(Dr. Chang, The Great Tao, p. 19)
What could be the first thought in the Universe?
The only thought possible in this state of being would have been the realization of its own state of being Omnipresent! The first possible thought in the Universe could be: Tao (God) realizing that it is Omnipresent, or Tao thinking/realizing “I Am Omnipresent”! The second logical thought would be, since I Am Omnipresent, I am all powerful and can create anything.
What we call creation are God’s/Tao’s thoughts being created and “dying” with each successive thought. Each thought created more energy, the energy would gather and collect and begin to vibrate less and less until solid matter was formed. Solid matter after all is nothing more than energy vibrating at slower and lower levels. From the Taoist perspective, the basic purpose of Life is to Live and to exist, life will continue to evolve and change in order to live.
From this knowledge we can see that everything is made from one substance, the whole universe is alive, emptiness is not really empty, the One Universal Energy is Intelligent, God has the ability to materialize and create whatever it wants and God is One (Tao: The Way of God by Master Waysun Liao).
Our abilities to see, hear, taste, smell, touch, think, speak, walk, create, dream, make love, declare war, observe and create the sciences etc… is only because God is in each and every one of us. In Chinese terms, our Qi or energy/life force as well as our Shen or spirit is the piece of God inside of us.
One of the signs that man has God in each of us is our pursuit of perfection and improvement as well as our constant desire to understand the inner workings of the Universe. The original purpose for the sciences and universities was/is man’s attempt to understand and get closer to God, to be reunited with God. To assist our fellow humans, man created many ways to improve our condition: education, health care, healing & wellness programs, services for the underserved, agriculture, constitutions, philosophy, religion etc…
Humankind must guard itself from the tendency to disconnect from God, to insist that our will is mightier than God’s will or even more tragic, to deny God’s will in its entirety. To do this will run the risk of disrupting the delicate balance that exists in the natural order of the world, including our own evolution; body, mind and spirit.
Every day we have three options:
- Move towards God and goodness/light/harmony
- Move away from God and towards evil/darkness/disharmony
- Stay the same distance, neither moving towards or away from God
The choice is the same for all of us and exists every moment of the day. Which way are you moving?
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