O Tao Te Ching ou Dao de Jing, comumente traduzido pelo nome de "O Livro do Caminho e da sua Virtude" , é um dos antigos escritos chineses mais conhecidos e importantes. A tradição diz que o livro foi escrito em cerca de 600 a.C. por um sábio que viveu na Dinastia Zhou chamado Lao Tzi ("Velho Mestre"), como um livro de provérbios relacionados com o Tao , e que acabou servindo como obra inspiradora para diversas religiões e filosofias, em especial o Taoísmo e o Budismo Chan (e sua versão japonesa o Zen).
The Tao Te Ching, Dao De Jing, or Daodejing (道德經), also simply referred to as the Laozi, whose authorship has been attributed to Laozi, is a Chinese classic text. Its name comes from the opening words of its two sections: 道 dào "way," Chapter 1, and 德 dé "virtue/power," Chapter 38, plus 經 jīng "classic." According to tradition, it was written around the 6th century BC by the sage Laozi (or Lao Tzu, "Old Master"), a record-keeper at the Zhou Dynasty court, by whose name the text is known in China.
The text is fundamental to the Philosophical Taoism (Daojia (Pinyin: Dàojiā) 道家) and strongly influenced other schools, such as Legalism and Neo-Confucianism. This ancient book is also central in Chinese religion, not only for Religious Taoism (Daojiao (Pinyin: Dàojiào) 道教) but Chinese Buddhism, which when first introduced into China was largely interpreted through the use of Daoist words and concepts. Many Chinese artists, including poets, painters, calligraphers, and even gardeners have used the Daodejing as a source of inspiration. Its influence has also spread widely outside East Asia, and is amongst the most translated works in world literature.