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lao tzu

To: alt.philosophy.taoism
From: (peter li'ir key)
Subject: Re: lao tzu
Date: Wed, 5 Jun 1996 17:23:59 GMT

Gr8tao  wrote:
>1. Lao Tsu - may or may not have existed.  There are some current thinking
>after the Ma Wang texts that he may be a group of writers using a pen name
>and if so they lived around 150 BCE rather than the the earlier dates of 
>aboput 500BCE.

>2.Since no one is yet sure - let's stick with the "old" version then.
>Legend tells of Lao Tsu born as an old man to his mother who concieved him
>while watching a falling star.  Nothing is known of his early years but
>there is belief that he might have been Keeper of the Archieves during the
>Jo (Chou) Dynasty.

legend further continues that he remained in his mother's womb until he was
already old, and that he was born at the age of 90 (or 99).  he had
long ears and as called "li erh" (which means long ear).  he is
considered to be concurrent with confucius (kung fu tze).

>Not much else is known of him.  He is said to have written the Tao Te
>Ching when he was leaving China. Disgusted by the human race in general
>and trying to find a place to be alone he was supposed to be stopped at
>the great wall by a guard and told to write his wisdom down as passage to
>leave.  He did so and was never from again.

alternate version:
lao tzu having become weary with the world left china.  he was stopped
by a border guard who begged lao tzu to impart his wisdom.  lao tzu,
never having allowed his words to be written down, spoke to the guard,
who then wrote lao tzu's words down.  lao tzu then disppeared into the

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