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Publisher's Summary

In 81 brief chapters, Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching, or Book of the Way, provides advice that imparts balance and perspective, as well as a serene and generous spirit. It teaches us how to work for the good with the effortless skill that comes from being in accord with the Tao: the basic principle of the universe.

Stephen Mitchell's best-selling version has been widely acclaimed as a gift to contemporary culture.

©1988 Stephen Mitchell (P)2007 HarperCollins Publishers

What the critics say

"Stephen Mitchell's rendition of the Tao Te Ching comes as close to being definitive for our time as any I can imagine. It embodies the virtues its translator credits to the Chinese original: a gemlike lucidity that is radiant with humor, grace, large-heartedness, and deep wisdom." (Huston Smith, author of The Religions of Man)

What listeners say about Tao Te Ching

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Outstanding

I would recommend reading first Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of now and A new World for a deeper understanding of the message in this book

4 people found this helpful

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  • MW
  • 2019-03-28

Solid

Very simple, solid and straightforward reading of the Tao Te Ching. Very short, but easy to get through.

1 person found this helpful

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Beautiful And Accessible

This entire book is just line after line of beautiful poetry. Must be as close as you can get to the original text for english, the translation is clear and accessible despite the sometimes challenging and provocative concepts.

One of my new favourite books, no doubt.

1 person found this helpful

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align with soul

the secret to getting your twin flame is to be aligned with soul... Tao will help you get there.

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Amazing

I can't stop listening; I have probably listened to this 6 times this year. Amazing book, amazing narration.

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Good lessons and well structured

Many good lessons. Easily split into multiple chapters for easy consumption and digestion. The narrator does a excellent performance

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incredible

superb reading of one of the most important works of our time. thank you for this gift.

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Best version of the Tao I have heard yet. Buy it.

good narration and like I said in title best transcription of the tao yet. this is a must buy. I listening to these short 81 verses every morning to start the day.

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Nature

All is all just be . Forget all you know . Let go . Breathe . Stay true. Don’t follow. Lead.

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that's some gentle wisdom.

I return to it regularly and enjoy it differently each time. good narration for the material.

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  • Linda Cotton
  • 2017-03-21

Please warn before ad!

I have to add to what others have said. I listen to this book over and over and every time - the ad at the end shocks me. Audible.com, please, put something before the ad to signal the end of the book - like "audible hopes you enjoyed this book" - or put some music or something. At the very least- put a few seconds of silence or lower the sound level of the ad to match the book. With a name like "audible.com" you would think you would pay attention to consistent sound levels.

60 people found this helpful

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  • StarKing
  • 2018-08-06

They Got Rid of the Ad at the End - Phenominal

As the title of this review states, they currently seemed to have gotten rid of the ad at the end that other people have mentioned.

This book is filled with profound messages that will take multiple listens to digest and absorb.

49 people found this helpful

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  • Michael
  • 2015-02-20

Please remove the ridiculous ad at the end

There is some great stuff to contemplate in this It's very relaxing to listen to. However, as others have said the ad at the end is absurd and totally takes you out of what should be a serene experience.

77 people found this helpful

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  • Mary Durand
  • 2015-03-04

Peace is ruined at the end

How disruptive to have Cheri Jones' loud voice at the end!! It startles you and ruins the peace you were feeling after listening to this special book !

51 people found this helpful

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  • Jason
  • 2013-08-12

Wonderful translation and reading, but...

Unfortunately, this recording is seriously marred by a loud and obnoxious Audible advertisement that starts IMMEDIATELY after the book is done. It is startling and incredibly out of place, especially considering the nature of this audiobook.

Audible absolutely needs to release an updated version, changing nothing save removing this offensive advertisement, and this would be a fantastic recording!

96 people found this helpful

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  • A reader
  • 2011-11-21

Infuriating "punch line"

I loved every aspect of this book. The translation, granted I know no other, was in clear and modern English that allowed me to fully appreciate the content in all its subtleties. Stephen Michell's soft tone of voice and the slow pace of his reading gently lead me through the meanders of Lao Tzu's thoughts.
As I heard the gentle voice say "by not dominating, the master leads", I was sinking deeper into a comfortable meditative mode. When suddenly, that Jack sprung out of her box: "Hello, this is Cherry Jones... bla bla bla". What possessed the producers of that book to kill it with that obnoxious ad at the end, which jumps into the listener's ears without a iota of a pause or a transition to isolate it from the reading of the Tao? That is how I learned that the reading of the Tao was over. With Ms Jones yelling in my ears.
That explains my one star for "Overall." There should be a grading for production quality.

88 people found this helpful

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  • Meg
  • 2011-08-30

Great Translation; Weak Production

A beautiful translation of the Tao read perfectly by the author/translator is marred by the production value. When listening with an iPod or Nano, I can actually hear the recording turning on and off. When using the recording for meditative purposes the noise becomes distracting.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Molly
  • 2018-03-22

Commercial at the end

Tao Te Ching is always inspiring but in this version they chose to place a loud woman promoting something at the end of the audio book. I like to listen at night so is very disruptive and jarring and will prevent me from listening to the book through the end again.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Sarah
  • 2010-06-17

Relaxing Listen

Listening to Tao wisdom any faster, would lose the point of what is being spoken. This audio book was the right speed and authors voice is easy on the ears. Many of the translations are easy to understand and give you plenty to contemplate.

20 people found this helpful

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  • Dan
  • 2017-03-05

A very, very poor translation

This work expresses the beliefs of the author ( referred to as the translator) and not necessarily those of Lao Tzu. I don't disagree with the translator's views, but he should be brave enough to stand on his own two feet and not hide behind the title of another man's work.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Client Amazon
  • 2021-11-08

The book of all books

Masterpiece of all masterpieces, wisdom of all wisdoms, the Tao Te Ching beautifully translated by Stephen Mitchell is a diamond you could listen to everyday. Every sentence is bringing light and magic, every word can make you cry, in awe. Mitchell's soothing voice adds preciousness and delight in the experience of listening to this timeless piece of art and wonder. Absolutely indispensable to help fulfill an enlightened life.