The Non-Religion of The Tao
The Secretary of The Tao (Pronounced: Dow)
There are 64 symbols of broken and unbroken lines. Dots and dashes.
Yins and yangs. Heads or tails.
What’s to consider?
Positive and negative.
South and North.
Shade and sunlight.
Explicit difference of an implicit unity.
Eddies and ripples.
Tadpoles and eyes.
Take one away and the other collapses.
“When all the world understands beauty to be beautiful, there is already ugliness.
When all the world understands good to be good, there is already evil.
For ‘to be’ and ‘not to be’ arise mutually.”
Calm of the morning lake.
Balm of the serpent basking.
They come into being together.
Yang and yin.
The course of nature.
A river. A life. A wave.
The healing virtue of flora and funghi. Magic!
A peculiar Power and Skill.
Gool ol’ boy, Lau Tzu.
Decided to vanish into the mountains, sick of courtly life.
But he was detained by the captain of the guard: “Halt.”
“Before you leave great thinker, you must write your wisdom. Here, use my seat and my gatehouse.”
The course of Nature.
The Tao which can be spoken of, is not the Eternal Tao.
The way that can be travelled, is not the regular way.
So what’s the big deal?
Consistency is a virtue of small minds.
The stream of the world.
The metaphor of water.
The line of least resistance. Soft.
Yet nothing is more Powerful than the ocean.
Water can be sliced with a sword, but leave no wound.
It cannot be compressed.
Supple and tender – the marks of life.
Rigidity and hardness – death.
Fluid. Gentle. Yielding.
The creativity on which the world is painted.
Judo: The Gentle Way.
The pine tree cracks under the weight of winter.
While the willow tree bends and flows with the conditions and never breaks.
The Tao has no definition that can be composed.
To pin the Tao is to miss the point.
Flowing left and right with no rank.
Always self-effacing. Indefinable. Behind the scenes.
Nourishing everything, without credit.
The best leaders are never in evidence.
Follow the course.
Tack with the wind.
Sail using the frequency of the whispers.
Fibre of muscle. Grain in wood. Strings on air.
A tidy wiggle. Aesthetically messily pleasing.
Never write the law. Li.
A litigious Spirit arrives. Hamstringing the People.
The Tao has no law – but orderly in a way that cannot be defined.
Like the physics of a person. Organised chaos.
Let go, or be dragged.
The teeth don’t need to bite themselves.
The Sun doesn’t need to illuminate itself.
We are It and It can’t be uttered.
Which of your organs is chief?
Your stomach to sustain you? It came first!
Or your brain? Which surely serves the stomach?
No no! The stomach nourishes the brain, which contemplates culture!
A chicken and an egg.
No top dog.
Things happen mutually without any conceived plan.
There was a young man who said “Dam!”
“…For it certainly seems that I am,
A creature that moves
In determinate groves,
I’m not even a bus I’m a tram!”
Nature has no rails on which to run?
It doesn’t know how It does It?
A snake needs no legs?
There are no instincts. Only ghosts.
Like neurisis: When your nerves hurt.
The sticky labels, everywhere.
Don’t stink of virtue. The Devil hears you coming!
Manifest the Tao.
Don’t force it.
Go with the rudder and flow.
The real master of the sword never uses one.
Learn to be un-attackable.
Wiggle the key in the lock. Don’t break it.
When you sing, sing without lust.
Don’t try. Think of the tune and let it sing itself.
That’s good theology!
Walk on the air. Pay no attention.
No profit. No loss. No advantage. No disadvantage.
Let your eyes see whatever they want to see.
Let your ears hear whatever they want to hear.
Let your mouth say whatever it wants to say.
And let your mind think whatever it wants to think.
Take away subject and object.
Ride on the wind. Let the wind ride on you.
Leave yourself alone!
Trust your software.
Meditation is freedom.
No repression of thought.
Ships always shut the engines in a hurricane.
The propellers become the hazard.
The cork is far safer, and the submarine wiser.
Don’t be a do-gooder, just allow it to happen with trust.
The trees always grow skyward without charity or duty.
“When purpose has been used to grasp purpose-less-ness the point has been grasped.”
How can one be genuinely natural?
Trying ruins the whole thing!
All attitudes are phoney.
Give up …and gain all the strength and energy you were looking for!
Try living totally in the present. It takes practice to slalom past all the distractions elsewhere and everywhere.
But even the distractions to future glories or horrors or distant memories of joy and sadness are, in fact, also happening now.
And there’s the loosener! Time for a de-frag.
There’s no way to be anywhere else than now.
“The Tao is that from which one cannot deviate. That from which one can deviate is not the Tao.”
“Your everyday mind is the Tao. When you try to accord with it, you deviate.”
“Stop using force Luke… Let go… Be like Pooh Bear… Switch off your targeting system and hit the bullseye…”