I had a chance to visit China a few times in my life. The first time goes back to 2006. Before I visited China, I thought most of the people wore sandals and used traditional bicycles for transportation. I also thought that I would see worn out old buildings and barely any technological advancements in the cities. After landing in China and stepping out of the airplane, I saw a genuinely modern and top of the line airport. This changed my preconceived views about China. The quality of structures in their cities was wonderful. I had a chance to visit more than 5 different cities and more than 40 different manufacturers while over there. All of them utilized top notch technology. On the other hand, I recognized that the people over there don’t care about the environment as much as the rest of the world. Their main focus is on financial development without any regard to the impact it has on the environment. The quality of food and the quality of air are not important matters in China.
If we check the Principles of Taoism And Items such as: “Follow the Earth” and “Harmony with Nature”, then the Chinese people today are definitely far removed from their original belief system. The Tao De Jing has a saying, “Humanity follows the Earth, the Earth follows Heaven, Heaven follows the Tao, and the Tao follows what is natural”. With this belief system, the people need live a life where the natural world is respected and protected. In Taoism, everything is composed of two opposite forces, Yin and Yang. The two forces are in constant struggle with each other. When they reach harmony, the energy of life is created. Someone who understands the principles of Taoism would not exploit nature for any reason, including profit. They would respect nature and try to preserve as much of it as possible.
Right now, China is the leading manufacturer and exporter of goods in the world, they have achieved this level of success at a great cost to their environment. The levels of water and air pollution in China are the highest in the world. Theoretically, the principles of Taoism would be able to fix these problems, but practically this is not possible. China is a rich and powerful nation and it wants to remain one. That is their number one goal and they do not plan on risking power or profit over something that they do not care about, such as the environment.