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What is TAO ?


TAO is the great flow of energy running through the universe, that takes you and everything with it.  TAO could be expressed as an energy interplay, in a material, physical, and spiritual sense. It is the movement of the universe and all our involvements, and could be 'seen' as a flow of energy. You could say it is the underlying structure and functioning of the universe, and the Ancient Chinese discovered a way to represent this energy with YIN and YANG symbols.

YIN and YANG energy represent the duality, and combination, of the energy in all things, and the direction of the flow of that energy [shown in the trigram symbols], became the basis of  all Chinese Philosophy and practices.  Feng Shui shows the flow of energy in your environment, while Tai chi brings an awareness of the energy flowing through your body.  The I Ching shows the effect of the flow of energy on your mind, and involvements.

The object is to become 'at one with the flow of energy', to "Go with the Flow" (of TAO), as 'an understanding without reaction', so that your actions become easier, more efficient, and less stressful.  This is called 'effortless action' - Wu wei - or 'action without force', and sometimes 'non-action' (actually non-reaction). ‘Wu wei’ means literally 'non-doing', but a simpler interpretation would be 'wu' meaning "without" and 'wei' meaning "effort", (in the absence of intention and expectation).  This introduces the idea of action that is easy, perhaps spontaneous, without excessive force or control, and here some would say "Going with the flow", which could erroneously indicate a non-concerned approach.  Far from it.  The concept of "effortless action" is adopted as part of the rigorous training of the Taoist Martial Arts such as T'ai chi ch'uan (T'ai chi), Baguazhang and Chi Kung (Qigong).  As to 'the lazy approach' perceived as without competitive urgency and involvement, Lao Tzu refers to this as the "diminishing will" and our sense of the loss of the control (of thoughts and notions) over our lives and others.

Apart from all the theories about TAO,

it is just within each different momentary situation

you find yourself in.

TAO is an intuitive understanding of who and where we are in the present moment, which goes beyond the normal notions of identity and status, and even purpose and meaning.  It is in one sense ordinary, and yet profound.  It is in essence quite simple, but our attention is invariably taken-over by other ideas, theories and concepts. TAO is completely impersonal and non-theistic - it has no 'higher authority' - and it cannot be petitioned, relied upon, or recognised.                           

 " The universe doesn't care who you are."

Our naming of it, and the explanations and reasons, take us away from what it actually is.  You could follow TAO as a sort of path of understanding and appreciation, sometimes known as ‘The Way’, or simply be moved by the flow of energy.

How do I follow TAO ?

Since 1982 most published works use the term 'Dao' rather than the Westernised 'Tao'.  TAO or 'Dao' (pronounced 'dow' as in 'cow') is a Chinese concept signifying 'way', 'path', or 'route'.  Dao is also used symbolically as indicating the 'right way' towards spiritual harmony or enlightenment.  From an original work attributed to Lao Tzu, the “Tao Te Ching”, a philosophy and a religion developed, which is referred to as Taoism (Daoism, pronounced 'Dowism').  Even though there is no direct worship as such, there are, in the religious forms of Taoism, standards of ethical and moral behaviour, as well as principles of action, and authenticity (following particular schools of thought), which reflect not only main tenets, but individual approaches.  The positive extent of this way of thinking can be used as a personal template for thought and action.


Effort produces strain.

Intention prolongs activity.

Thinking leads you astray.

Standards encourage competition.



Boasting invites reaction.

This is too much for your self.

TAO is simple awareness.



Do not push.

Do not pull.

Stay still.

Do not display.

Do not compete.

Do not contend.

Stand aside.



The Meaning and Power of TAO

"The secret of  TAO the Taoists never told you"

Tom Leworthy  (2016)

In Taoist philosophy the energy of the universe is automatic and functions without our involvement, and if we intervene or try to control to 'get more', we merely interfere and upset the balance.  This is not to say that we should do nothing, but that we should act in accordance with what is around us and inside us.  For most this 'state of mind' and practice will require some form of spiritual practice, usually through meditation, improving awareness, and self development, which can introduce yet another Taoist concept "te" or "de" (virtue, or integrity).  Te is the response to TAO  in a person who is in harmony in themselves, with their place and time in the world, which is further encouraged through activity, rather than a purely philosophical or mystical outlook.


Quietly productive without stress.

Happy without acquisitive thoughts.

Enjoying your food,

and comfortable in your clothes.

With interest and compassion,

living simply, using what you have.

Independent and aware,

to be content in the world.



The Meaning and Power of TAO

"The secret of TAO the Taoists never told you"

Tom Leworthy  (2016)

       In some sense you cannot practice Taoism (that would be 'effort or intention for control'),  but it is the result of a quiet awareness of ourselves and the world around us.

" You've already arrived.

Now you are here,

have another look




The Meaning and Power of TAO

"TAO TE CHING ~ The Meaning and Power of Tao" book by Tom Leworthy.

" The secret of  TAO the Taoists never told you "

The underlying message of the TAO TE CHING is Chance and Change, and how to approach life as a continuous changing reality.   Effortless action (Wu Wei),  peace of mind, living in the present, are all packed into this small book with humility.

You alter your world through an awareness, or Way of quiet observation, and here you will find the secret that the Taoists didn't mention.

TAO Master


28 pages. Soft back. 

15 cm. X  21 cm.



 Free UK post

 To purchase 

just send me an email

Mystic  Gateways

There is a lot more going on around you than you are aware of. There is a dynamic flow of energy running through the world that influences everything you see and do.   The TAO I CHING will show you how to see these energies, how to use them in your everyday life, and how you can develop your own 'spirituality' and a deeper connection with the world around you.  The issue centres on your awareness ~ and  this can be opened.

Awareness comes  about through perception, but your perception can get altered and diluted by your physical state, your emotions, thoughts, opinions, experiences and memories.  Awareness embraces perception, but it's something more than your knowledge, focus, or interest, and develops into an understanding.  

Tao sunrise.

All of this takes place in the present moment  ~  which is probably why mystics go on about it so much. The present moment (itself) forms a gateway, and if you didn't know this you might spend a lot of time searching elsewhere.

Tao gateway and shrine.

Mystic Gateways are signs, elements, ways, or situations, that alert you to the here and now.  A Mystic Gateway can be a very simple doorway or path that invites you into another situation, or highlights something to make you look again at where you are. Mystic Gateways allow you to pass through into almost another dimension where the everyday world is viewed in a different way. Mystic Gateways are aspects, ways, or situations, to show you much more of the present moment.

"TAO I CHING ~ The Mystic Gateway" book
Set of Elements for the easy and instant selection of a hexagram in the I ching

The TAO I CHING and the ELEMENTS are your gateway to an awareness of your own energy and influence in life.

The  ELEMENTS form a link, or mystic gateway, from the spiritual and symbolic realms into this world  through the hexagram, that steps through this gateway to give you information and insight.

Through Mystic Gateways you enter
the visible working of the world.
This can only happen in a situation
that is built for this very purpose ~
the present moment.

The Mystic Gateway

copyright symbol
TAO I CHING       Tom Leworthy  2005

                                        T  A O   I   C H I N G

                                The  Mystic  Gateway



gold Yin Yang symbol
gold Yin Yang symbol
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