The Tao is empty; when utilized, it is not filled up
So deep! It seems to be the source of all things
It blunts the sharpness
Unravels the knots
Dims the glare
Mixes the dusts
So indistinct! It seems to exist
I do not know whose offspring it is
Its image is the predecessor of the Emperor
The life force within us is always present even when we leave this earthly body. We are not our bodies. We are way more powerful than that. Yet we forget. Our lives, why we are here, is to remember who we really are. Re-member, put back together, become whole again. When we thought we were separate we became dis-membered. We lost our way, lost touch with our soul. Our soul is calling out to us – always. Mostly we ignore it. It is sending us messages all the time – in our thoughts, dreams, through song lyrics, articles and books we read. There are no coincidences. If you think it’s a coincidence then look for the deeper meaning in what is happening. What is the message? What are you being called to do?
Maybe you need to start living life on your terms and not in the way you think is expected of you. I know we are always looked after. Our needs are always met. Challenges are lessons we need to learn. If we don’t then they keep coming back until we do.
Few have the courage to admit this. They are the way-showers. Take heed. Trust your gut. Look for the quiet ones, the ones who are doing the deep inner work without seeking glory or reward. They know the reward is far greater than anything you can imagine on the earth plane. Seek out those people who have deep, unshakeable faith, the ones who take responsibility and keep going however tough life gets. Those who have the greatest challenges are the best teachers. There is nothing they cannot overcome. They know the only way is through. You can’t get round it.
Where do you find these people? They are all around you. Everyone is your teacher. Learn from your response to them, especially if you dislike them, disagree with them or get triggered by them. They are your greatest teachers. You are being called to awaken, to grow. Be grateful when these people show up in your life. How you respond is up to you. No one is going to make you do anything. Ignore them at your peril for there are greater demons lying in wait.
Do not glorify the achievers
So the people will not squabble
Do not treasure goods that are hard to obtain
So the people will not become thieves
Do not show the desired things
So their hearts will not be confused
Thus the governance of the sage:
Empties their hearts
Fills their bellies
Weakens their ambitions
Strengthens their bones
Let the people have no cunning and no greed
So those who scheme will not dare to meddle
Act without contrivance
And nothing will be beyond control
Wanting something takes away the ability to have it. Having no worldly ambitions - fame, money etc. will lead to true happiness. It is the path. It is the way. Having courage to follow it is hard - especially with so many distractions in the modern world. It takes steadfastness. It takes faith. It's also important to hold it lightly with compassion and kindness, especially compassion towards oneself. One cannot truly feel compassion for others unless they feel it for themselves.
Everything starts from within. Observe how you have been conditioned and how all your thoughts, words and actions are the result of those conditions. Perhaps you were told you needed to be successful, make a name for yourself, leave a legacy.
You don't need to do anything. Simply allow life to unfold like the petals of a flower. Are you so vain that you think you can change your destiny? If you allow the way to appear before you, instead of trying to force things then all will be revealed in good time. If you push yourself it will take you away from the path and it will take longer to arrive at your destination which is always there and never changes. How you get there is up to you.
When the world knows beauty as beauty, ugliness arises
When it knows good as good, evil arises
Thus being and non-being produce each other
Difficult and easy bring about each other
Long and short reveal each other
High and low support each other
Music and voice harmonize each other
Front and back follow each other
Therefore the sages:
Manage the work of detached actions
Conduct the teaching of no words
They work with myriad things but do not control
They create but do not possess
They act but do not presume
They succeed but do not dwell on success
It is because they do not dwell on success
That it never goes away
Channelled writings on chapter 2.
Today we are looking at non-duality. You can't have good without evil, hot without cold etc. They are merely different points on a spectrum. As one moves more to non-duality, without reacting and judging things - simply accepting what is - inner peace is found.
We don't do the inner work for ourselves only but for the benefit of all beings. Everyone around us benefits when we become calmer, kinder and less reactive. They feel better about themselves too and this ripples out throughout the world. Violent thoughts beget violence if you act on them. Observe thoughts without judgement. Let them float by like clouds moving across a clear blue sky.
Actions speak louder than words. Try to do good not for recognition but because it's the right thing to do. You will be rewarded in ways you cannot always foresee.
The other day I was listening to a talk by Dr. Wayne Dyer. He mentioned how he had spent 81 days writing about each chapter of the Tao Te Ching. Every year I like to do something for Lent - a result of my Christian upbringing when we used to give something up. When I was doing my confirmation training the vicar suggested maybe we should adopt a new positive habit. I thought reflecting on the Tao Te Ching was a perfect project. Each morning I am meditating on the chapter then writing in my journal afterwards. I will share what I wrote each day in these blog posts. Please note this is channelled writing.
The Tao that can be spoken is not the eternal Tao
The name that can be named is not the eternal name
The nameless is the origin of Heaven and Earth
The named is the mother of myriad things
Thus, constantly with
out desire, one observes its essence
Constantly with desire, one observes its manifestations
These two emerge together but differ in name
The unity is said to be the mystery
Mystery of mysteries, the door to all wonders
The essence of life is a great mystery that cannot be explained in words. It is central to all of us: in our breath, the movement of our bodies and in our thoughts. We are all one, connected by this essence. We believe we are separate - on enlightenment we will realise separation was just an illusion and we were enlightened all along.
'All things are by nature void' the Heart Sutra Quantum physics has proved this - nothing is solid, everything is energy. The outward manifestation comes from what is within us. Our thoughts, our beliefs create our reality. There is no denying this. If we want peace we have to think peaceful thoughts. Anger will not create peace. Being is becoming. We become what we are, what we thing, what we say, what we do. But we don't need to 'do' anything. Allow live to unfold, have faith in the divine mystery. We don't need to know yet we already know everything. If we think we don't know we are in denial.
We use that pretend ignorance as an excuse to not live life fully. If we only remembered we would never be afraid - of anything! Fear is the most destructive force. Yet sometimes we need to be destructive - destroy old patterns, old structures, old beliefs to allow the new to emerge. Now pray, meditate, create peace and calm from within. We are all creators and always creating.
Everything is a process, nothing is static or stationary. Energy moves and everything is energy. The source of all that is.