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Does the Dude Abide by the Tao?: A comparative study of Dudeism and the Tao Te Ching.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Theology, Department of Theology, History of Religions.
2015 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Dudeism was inspired by a film released in 1998 named The Big Lebowski, which recounts the adventures of a character called the Dude, the namesake of the religion. The Dude is an example of the (mostly) ideal practitioner of Dudeism, which Dudeists mean has existed throughout the ages, expressed differently by different systems of belief and behaviour while retaining an essential Dudeistic spirit.

   A superficial overlook of this system of belief and behaviour finds many similarities to early Taoism, a parallel which Dudeism itself encourages, particularly in regards to the Tao Te Ching. It is also clear that many of Dudeism’s central concepts are inspired or borrowed from said work.

   This essay explores the relationship between Dudeism and Taoism through comparison, focusing on the teachings of Tao Te Ching in relation to Dudeist thought and practice. It seeks to establish Dudeism’s religious history as a religion firmly rooted in both a modern motion picture and ancient Eastern thought. The essay concludes that Dudeism has adapted the teachings of the Tao Te Ching for a modern, Western audience through the language and imagery of The Big Lebowski, adding its own twists to ancient concepts. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 32 p.
Keyword [en]
Dudeism, Taoism, Big Lebowski, Tao Te Ching, Daodejing, Dude, Tao, Dao
National Category
History of Religions
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-273540OAI: diva2:894827
Subject / course
History of Religions
Educational program
Upper Secondary School Teacher Education Programme
Available from: 2016-01-18 Created: 2016-01-15 Last updated: 2016-01-18Bibliographically approved

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