What is Tao?
It's true that Tao is an ancient philosophical system, and it's also true that it's a state of being.
More than anything else, Tao is the greatest journey of self-discovery you will ever undertake. To understand ourselves and our place in the world, we must see and accept the world for what it truly is. Tao provides the structure for your exploration.
This is a journey that lasts a lifetime, but in the process you will find yourself living the most incredible life you could have ever imagined -- One that's uniquely yours.
You'll find some essential tenets of our practice below.
"You can't be humble with your eyes closed"
To be fully present in the moment is to have all your physical senses —Sight, Sound, Smell, Touch — attuned to the present. If you close your eyes, you immediately eliminate one of the strongest inputs you have. You no longer see the moment for what it is. Without external feedback, like a teacher, our journey inward is nothing more than an echo chamber for our ego.
Humility is something that can only be learned in the physical world, because it is the feedback of the physical world that gives us a sense of our limitations.
"Take the easy road"
Society tells us that taking the easy road is reserved for the lazy, that the hard road is what "separates the men from the boys." Tao tells us different. If the road is effortless, then it's right for us. An easy road for me might be a hard road for you, and that's okay. It's great, in fact. All of us have our own paths to walk, and the easier the road is to travel, the more we can enjoy the journey.
"Maximum results with minimum effort"
All we have at our disposal is our ability to pay attention to what's in front of us, and luckily, it's all we need. Pretend for a moment that life is a river. When we see reality clearly, we can see the rocks underneath the surface of the river and the rapids as they approach. We can avoid pitfalls and guide ourselves to the banks to gather resources. Most importantly, we don't have to paddle upstream. We never need to waste our energy if we pay attention to way the river flows. When we align ourselves to the currents, our efforts are minimal but our achievements are great.
"Every day should be better"
What truly distinguishes Tao from other philosophical systems is that it teaches us to look for improvements on a daily basis. Rather than sacrificing the present for future rewards, Tao is results-oriented. Our focus is and will always be on the practical daily applications of Tao.
"What's your perfect day?"
Our daily decisions are based on an inferred social arrogance that we are immortal. But what if the runway wasn't infinite, but just lasted one day? What decisions would you make today if you knew tomorrow was your last? As Taoists, we describe our perfect day as the what we would do with every minute of our last day on earth. Our goal is to bring a piece of our perfect day into our daily lives, a little bit at a time. Eventually, we wake up and look around to see that each and every day is perfect. That certainly is the case for me.