They are different romanizations of Chinese into English. Taoism is the Wade-Giles romanization, which has been around for a while. Daoism is the modern Pinyin romanization that was standardized by the Chinese government. Incidentally, they are both pronounced the same - with a "D". There are (at least) 2 different spelling like this for most Chinese words when rendered into English. For example, Peking (Wade-Giles) is the same as Beijing (Pinyin).
I do find an important distinction between the East and the West in that the popular view seems to be held forth as authoritatively "true" in the West whereas in the East the sages who have gone beyond the popular myths are venerated and it's understood that the deities and concepts of popular religion are there to help people along the path but that at some point the popular notions will be transcended.
Fundamentalist Christians in America and on this list tend to strongly hold that the teaching myths are literally true and to disagree with doctrine invalidates those who don't agree with them. I don't know much about Catholicism but it does appear they have shunted there ER's off into monasteries and so to some extent allow it but in a highly controlled and often silenced manner. I know Bernadetta Roberts believed that St. John the Divine might have written more had it not been for the Spanish Inquisition. The church did declare the teachings of Meister Eckert heresy though neither he nor Roberts believed that to be the case.
In brief it does seem to me that literalism is the curse of the Judeo Christian Islamic etc. religious traditions in the west and has led down through the centuries to the religious violence that is ongoing in the west today. Ethnic religious violence is a problem in the east also though much of it is the result of the Islamic invasions. I'm not claiming that it's unique to the middle eastern intolerant "monotheism" but it is is exacerbated by it.
Buddhism having no divine revelation has the most peaceful tolerant record by far and I hold that is significantly because it doesn't claim it's teachings were delivered from the divine source of the universe. What you speak of as "conscious" is something I think Buddhism addresses as "compassion". Compassion being a fundamental teaching of Buddhism.
I never heard of Taoism being called Daoism before.
It's two different phonetical representations, transliterations to write the sounds of Chinese words in English. It the same word. The older system used "t" for the sound that in the more recent system is represented by "d". The old "ch" is now a "q" so "Chi" is spelled "Qi", and "Chi Kung" is written "Qi Qong". Same words in Chinese just one system for whatever reason is being replaced by another for writing them in English.
Here is an overview. http://www.edepot.com/taoroman.html
Added By Edit: Ooops, had I kept reading before hitting reply I would have seen the question had been ably answered. lfen
This message has been edited by lfen, 01-15-2005 16:55 AM
I agree with the distinction you made between the Eastern and Western views. In fact, philosophical Daosim (the "ER version") has no problem with followers also following other religions, such as Christianity. However, most Christian churhes will not tolerate their followers studying Daoism as well. I have seen this first-hand, on both sides, through several friends. The concept of tolerance is built in to almost all religions, Eastern and Western. It just seems like it is ignored a lot in the Western religions. Perhaps this is has to with Ifen's comment that the ER version is venerated in the East (and this is true for both Buddhism and Daoism), whereas it seems to be hidden away in the West.
In the Western religions, you don't see the belief in God vs. non-belief in God as a difference between PR and ER...
I disagree on this point. Forms of Christian Mysticism, Kabbahlism, and Sufism may retain terminology such as "God", but in a mystical context "God" doesn't necessarily mean deity so much as nebulous concepts as unity, oneness, the-indescribable - similarly, in Eastern religions terms like "Godhead" or "Buddha" can refer to a specific deity or a more general spiritual concept.
Good point. Even Paul Tillich (Protestant ER theologian) said that God does not "exist" (a notorious phrase). What he meant was that the predicate "exist" could not be applied to Him. He didn't mean God was not real--He is the "ground of all being"--that sort of thing.
I'm wondering what the attitude of ER is to PR in the East.
Well, one attitude and I'm not sure how wide spread it is is that it's compassionate to allow PR believers their beliefs often with the notion that if they pursue external deity by practising prayer, devotion, etc. they will develop their minds to the point where they can go beyond concepts. Shri Ramana Maharshi's teachings are a good example of this gentle acceptance of the necessity of starting where you are at.
On the other hand some teachers such as both the Krishnamurti's J. and U.G. tend to be very iconoclastic and point out the absurdity of all beliefs as being illusions. They condemn all religions as something created by the ego that fosters and strengthens it so they have a dim view of PR.
I'm sure there are teachers that fall along a continuum between acceptance and condemnation.
I would prefer it didn't. But it's Robin's terms so he gets to define them.
For me the distinction lies in ego based or nondual consciousness based teachings. I think worship can be a good activity for the ego. The problem I see in the west is that the religions for the most part don't understand what is beyond the dualistic experience of the ego and so tend to persecute as heretical individuals who have gone beyond that whereas in the East it's more often generally understood that there is something beyond the dualistic experience of the ego and a recognition that there are higher or more accurate and profound teachings.
s'cool. we had a great horned living in the woods (indiana), and listened to it every night. did you know about the other? you may have heard of "gray owl paddles" which are named after him. ran accross him first when living in ontario many years ago. I believe he was quite spiritual about it too.