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Tao te Ching
(187 words)

[German Version]

(or Dao de Ching), “The Book of the Tao and Its Virtue,” a key text of literary Taoism. The work is also known under the name of its putative author Lao Tsu; it was probably composed during the Period of the Warring States (481–221 bce). Two chapters with 81 aphorisms describe the concept of the Tao at length. An extensive commentary literature began to emerge in the 2nd century bce. The Heshang Gong commentary (2nd cent. bce) introduced the religious Taoist interpretation of the text, which concentrates on the physical and spiritual nature of human being…

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Reiter, Florian C., “Tao te Ching”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 29 November 2021 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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