In Derek Lin’s book The Tao of Daily Life: The Mysteries of the Orient Revealed The Joys of Inner Harmony Found The Path to Enlightenment Illuminated, he opens chapter 1 with a story I’ve heard before. It’s the analogy of the Fish. There is a young fish and a Older Fish.
The young fish asks the older one about this thing called The Ocean. The younger fish doesn’t see the ocean. Doesn’t feel the ocean… does the ocean even exist?
The older fish explains that the ocean flows through him and around him. That he is part of the Ocean but his close proximity to it prevents him from seeing it.
This is an analogy to the concept of the Tao. The Tao being more then just “the way.” The Tao is:
- The ultimate principal that underlies reality
- The one truth that is at the center of all spiritual truths.
- The universal source of consciousness.
- The prime mover of the universe.
Osho, in his book on the Tao, says the Tao could be thought of as God – but isn’t. It isn’t because in his view Taoism believes that the statement of one thing creates it’s opposite. To define God, we must define Satan. I’m not sure I agree with that, nor that Taoism agrees with that… but that is Osho’s explanation as to why the term God is not used, when the concept above is very close to the concept of God.
Derek Lin says that we can only approach realization of the Tao by letting go of logic, knowledge. This is in tune with other documents on Taoism, such as this Page describing Taoism.
Taoism approaches realization through the vehicle of intuition. Much like the Hindu paths.