My own creation; I pulled these translations off the Internet back in 1997 and set them next to one another so I could look at the differences and similarities, in hope of gaining insight into what the original text might have meant.
I took a couple of courses on religions as part of my philosophy studies in college, and for the most part, only the Tao seemed to make sense. Possibly because it’s less of a religion and more of a philosophy, and it’s compatible with other religions, like Christianity, and, um, my imaginary pal Hanuman the monkey god.
I tend to forget about what I learned from reading the Tao, but periodically I return to read it and remember, and to try to apply it to my own life. I remember when my grandpa Groenwoldt died I read it over and over again, and found that it helped me believe that his spirit is still around us, part of the force of life. I think of him whenever I’m in the garden planting flowers, or playing with my dog, because he loved both of those things.
Recently, I was having a discussion with a friend about religion and agnosticism, and what I believe about spirituality, and I was reminded again of the Tao Te Ching. I forget I already have some of the answers.