Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Verse 70


My teachings are easy to understand
and easier to put into practise.
Yet so few in this world understand
and so few are able to apply what I teach.

My teachings are older than this world
and the things I do are done for a reason.
How can you grasp their meaning?
Because you do not know me,
you are not able to understand my teachings.

If you want to know me,
look inside your heart.

Lao Tzu speaks from the perspective of one who has forfeited the baggage of a personal ‘self’, a construct limited in time and space, created out of memories and conditioning and upheld by habitual mental activity. Open and unconstrained, he allows life to flow through him, directing the words that come through his mouth, guiding his activities and effortlessly informing his teachings.

Why do so few understand his teaching? Perhaps one reason is because many turn his words into conceptualisation and out of that create deadened, mindless rituals; the tragic fate of so many spiritual teachings.

“If you want to know me, look inside your heart.” When Lao Tzu says “me” I believe he is referring to the flow of the Tao that directs his every word and deed.

If you grasp hold of the teachings but blind yourself to the essence of what he is trying to say – the necessity of going within and finding the Tao within oneself – you lose everything and the teaching becomes meaningless, even counterproductive.

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