The Maui Taoist

Adrift in time upon an endless sea…..

Category: Social Issues


I must accept as true only that which is freed from my subjective prejudices… Pierre Hadot

It’s not for me, and Buddha never thought so too! There is nothing real about re-incarnation. Why do so many perpetuate this myth? I think Buddha would be embarrassed by this sort of irrational thinking. Ancient metaphorical language and thought, from orally expressed discourses, passed down through 2500 years, translated through countless different languages, interpreted by different systems of logic, often misrepresented, and frequently altered for nefarious reasons, cannot be trusted as truth.

It’s like watching so much of the fake news today, this has always happened since the days of antiquity and it will continue.  We should learn to think for ourselves. If someone sold your body to another, you would be outraged, yet we give our minds away without a second thought.

Siddhartha Buddha died before 400 BC, where is he now? Only in the hearts and minds of his followers. His use of the term “rebirth” has perhaps, been corrupted by some into “re-incarnation” with a desire and attachment to live forever and maybe to use these false promises to win converts or to pass judgment on those they dislike. I think he would not be impressed.

Chan Buddhism was founded in China during the 6th century CE. According to D.T. Suzuki, as a “natural evolution of Buddhism under Taoist conditions.” The word “Chan” means meditation. Zen, a product of 13th century Japan, was derived from Chan. The basic idea was to achieve “Buddha Nature” without the need for the written teachings and did not adhere to the scriptural dharma. Tibetan Buddhism, a sect that didn’t exist until the 10th century AD, that is 1400 years after Buddha’s death, differs very much from Chan/Zen and it is highly steeped in scriptures and dogma. Buddhism and Taoism like Christianity has taken many forms since the ancient times. Even the Taoists, some of them, deified Lao Tzu, in an attempt to compete with religions of their time.

They honor me with their words, yet their hearts are far from me… Jesus of Nazareth.

Optimists hope, pessimists complain, realists adapt. Hope is for losers, complaining is for whiners, adapting is what winners do, this is the greatest teaching of all. People the world over have survived war, natural disasters and coping with death mostly through pragmatic realism. The fact is, these trials make us all stronger. Unfortunately our modern culture has made us soft and weak. Proper meditation leads to clarity and objectivity and freedom from delusion.

The unexamined life is not worth living…Socrates

Promising afterlives, trying to explore past lives, contemplating the future, always comes at the expense of the here and now. With the exception of certain mindfulness spiritual exercises, dwelling on the past and future are worse than a waste of time. Even psychotherapists get into the act. Trying to analyze the past and encouraging their patients to re-live it, is just pain dumb, dangerous actually. As much as I love and respect the many good things and benefits to mankind brought about through religion; the worst thing to have happened in all of this was for once great philosophies to be reduced to religions, where metaphorical language has been altered into dogma or worse, attempts to control and manipulate the free thinking minds of people.

I was born at the same time as Heaven and Earth… Zhuang Tzu

I have been reborn a few times in my life, it is happening now, but the thought that I will be born again into another body is ludicrous. This in NOT a teaching of Buddha! Taoists and Zen Buddhists are more clear on this than others, believe what you want to, but don’t waste your time contemplating such things. How can anyone be free when they are attached to duality and dreams of the past and future? They are not, they are in fact slaves. Maybe you have been miss-led by the many misguided schools of thought that have emerged since the time of Siddhartha and others?

Buddha said: “Worship nothing” and when he died… they worshiped him.

The real teachings of the great sages are often not what we as a society have been led to believe. I will certainly not tell anyone what to believe, but why do people believe in myths that discredit the ancient sages with irrational beliefs? The early Christians totally threw out the Gnostic scriptures and defiled translations of Plato by changing Socrates name to Saint Paul! The corruption of the sages was a common method to gain power and control over peoples minds, how sad is it that their words have been twisted by knaves to be used against the freedom of the individual. It is ironic because Buddha, Jesus, Socrates, Ramana Maharshi, and many others fought so hard to teach truth.

I have never been born and I will never die… Nisargadatta Maharaj

Often the great teachers of antiquity knew that they had to express their thoughts in a way that their listeners could understand, based on the prevailing rules of the day and based on cultural norms. Therefore they would even say things they knew were not exactly true, but would be perceived as truth to the listener in order to convey the basic ideas to them.

In the ancient world the word “God” is often a simple metaphor for “Nature”. People, especially philosophers would be killed as heretics if they didn’t use such language. Socrates lost his life for corrupting the minds of youths, and now he is renown as the father of philosophy. “Karma” is simply cause and effect, “afterlife” means how you are remembered when you leave this earth, by your character, “rebirth” means wake up and smell the coffee and change your life now!

Instead of hoping for secret meanings in corrupted translations of metaphorical teachings, I would suggest, stop complaining about how the wind is blowing and simply adjust your sails.


Copyright Cory Williams 2017

  • For more in-depth information about this topic try reading this interesting article I found after writing this one:

Reincarnation and Buddhism: Here We Go Again


Nature is Reason

Why complain… nobody cares

The path to happiness is simple, stop caring about things you have no control over. In these times, as throughout history, the path remains the same, yet as Lao Tzu tells us, “My way is simple, yet no one can follow it”.

What do I want to happen today?… Whatever is supposed to happen.

To Taoists, and many other groups of enlightened thinkers, all of Nature is God, meaning all of reality is God. Whatever is happening is to be enjoyed and or endured with equal aplomb. In fact, not accepting reality would be considered the greatest of all mistakes, an evil of sorts, as that attitude will lead to unhappiness or worse.

Denying Nature would then be the greatest transgression humans seemed doomed to repeat.

Climate change…so what? Who cares? It is part of Nature and out of control, the planet was much warmer in Roman days. Wars? Oh well!… So what? Politics…get over it! Oh what, you don’t like something someones says, or does?…Big deal! Grow up already! Try being grateful for the diversity of thought.

There is nothing you can do about any of these things anyway; or do you deny human nature? People are a part of Nature as much as anything else. Stop trying to control and manipulate, stop judging others, stop complaining about things, or you are out of harmony with Nature, God, and you will suffer.

This advice is lost on the emotionally immature. Lacking the ability to reason is the greatest problem with emotional people. You will never be happy without gaining emotional intelligence.

Forget struggling with all your perceived problems. Reading books about Tao and Zen and Stoicism is all a waste of time if you don’t apply these principles to your daily life with constancy. Judgment is guilt, discernment is innocence. The path to happiness, for many, is to avoid or ignore all the things that most people think is important. To them the only really important thing is to be mindful of our own judgments, and to be discerning, free thinking, self motivated individuals.

Free yourself from the pathetic angry mob of emotionally weak and insecure fools that believe any lie they wish to agree with because it makes them feel good. Being self-righteous and sanctimonious will lead to personal ruin. Becoming addicted to your emotions can actually kill you.

When will you start to take responsibility for your life? Be happy now! Stop caring! There is only one worthy goal, master yourself, and it starts with your judgements and aversions that lead to emotional excess. You get upset because you allow other people and things to control you, there is no person that is free, if they care about things they cannot control.

So what are you waiting for? Today is the Olympic games, you must perform, and you are naked! It is no longer training or a superficial attempt to become a Taoist or a Zenist, while you whine about reality. Reality, that is in fact the only thing that is true; learn from it or suffer the consequences. Trying to force your will is a complete waste of your life. Hundreds of millions of people have wasted their whole lives fighting reality; they have, and are still, living in an emotionally based prison of their own making.

Therefore be glad when the universe gives you a challenge, how else can you become brave and adapt and overcome? If you don’t like something, just walk away and never look back. If it were not for hardships how could we learn? If you accept lies, abuse and insults you will only get more of them. Who’s abusing you now? Separate yourself from the mob of group think and self abuse.

Stop wandering aimlessly, having no guide, and following the noise and discordant cries of those that call us in different directions, or your life will be consumed in making mistakes, and then it will be over; and you will discover then that you have never lived it.

Copyright Cory Williams 2017


Faith is when your spirit is engaged in each now moment

One the many befits of proper meditation practice, is to become more objective about yourself, this should lead to being non-judgmental. When we see and learn about our many faults, we need to also learn to forgive ourselves as we have seen the many benefits of what we have discerned from our lives. Consequently we can forgive others. Better still, we will come to see, that not judging is an even better way to relate then having judgments and then “rescinding” them with forgiveness. All this judging and forgiveness is upsetting and unnecessary. Learning the right lessons in life, for some, means how quickly can we move from emotion to calm. When we learn our lessons, we see that remaining calm is the key to keeping your objectivity.

Calmness is the abode of the spirit

When we trust our spirits to run the show, will be discerning, intuitively non-judgmental. We can learn to forgive immediately, right on the spot. Coming from this place, we can remain calm, see even deeper, free from the need to react. This requires confidence in our sense and response to each now moment. Coming from faith, means that we trust our spirit to guide us.

Resist the tendency to doubt

It is not possible to just have faith in things, we need to have faith in our understanding of things…. Moreover, that we develop confidence that we have this understanding. Therefore, we will have few doubts. The fewer doubts we have is the equivalent of our level of faith. If we resist the tendency to doubt we are trusting, having faith in our spirit.

You can have faith in anything and it will yield similar results.
If you have faith in your health, faith in God, faith in country, political ideology, faith in your partner, faith in nature, whatever, you will be fulfilled according to your beliefs.

The more understanding we acquire, the more confidence we gain and the more faith we have; the more pleasant our lives become.

Enter Doubt…. The destroyer of faith

Healthy doubt is a powerful ally, but I’m not talking about that here. A healthy mind already knows from experience what is right and wrong for us; we don’t need doubt too much. When we mess up, we learn and change our way of thinking or our way of doing something and this is essential. The problem comes when we over analyze things. Our brain is looking for faults and ways to improve, this is an adaptation to stress. Over-using this system causes us dismay as we then doubt ourselves and we gather insecurities that lead to suffering. You might say, when we get stressed out, we doubt, then we lose faith.

The spontaneous flow of life’s energy needs to flow unimpeded to and from our spirits. When we get involved filtering and analyzing and doubting we lose faith in our ability to be natural. The simple fact is we cannot be “natural” if we do not follow our faith. By natural here I mean that originally there was no desire, we learned in an non-prejudicial way. Cravings and desires lead us to try and know “why” this inevitably leads to doubt,  after all, we may never know “why”. Doubt erodes our faith; taken to the extreme we can lose confidence, and ultimately we will suffer.

…. the only thing a human ever needs to do, is to respond correctly to each now moment…

Letting go of the need to know “Why” gives us the freedom to listen to our intuition, to use faith. Especially important in our dealing with other people is our ability to be confident that we are acting appropriately in the now moment. Lets face it, the only thing a human ever needs to do, is to respond correctly to each now moment. Doubting interrupts this natural inclination and impedes communion with the spirit.

Doubt destroys spontaneity. We have trained our spirit during our whole life, it knows what is right and good. Enter doubt and we conflict with our spirit, as if, everything we know in our heart is maybe wrong? This is destructive to the spirit and can lead a would-be meditator into hell. Without faith, doubt is going to interfere with our sense and our response.

Chronic doubters, and people that over analyze things, are usually over reacting to those things because their lack of faith leaves them defenseless in the now moment. They often appear needy and insecure to others and that exacerbates their doubt until they have serious reasons to doubt!  Often people of this persuasion develop physical and mental illnesses, many of which are lethal.

Trust that the Universe is completely out of control

Have Faith. Trust everything and everybody! It is a simple Taoist method to always be coming from faith. For example, Trust that the Universe is completely out of control. Trust that everyone will usually act in their own best interest. Trust good people to be good, trust bad people to be bad. Trust the climate to change, and change again. Trust that there will always be conflict and wars. Trust that you may get a broken heart from time to time but the wisdom gained and enjoyment of love was worth it.

Have faith in the way things are
Trust your ability to adapt and overcome all obstacles

Have faith in human nature
Trust your ability to discern the best people for you

Have faith in healing
Trust that you will learn to have faith

Have faith in yourself
Trust that you can always be fully in the now moment without doubting

“It is not possible to invent faith, but it is possible to resist the tendency to doubt!

Have patience, stop doubting that which you know in your heart to be true, and faith will do its perfect work.”

Copyright Cory Williams 2014

Too much Love?

When is too much, more than enough?

When is enough, enough?

When is too little, not enough?

Or maybe “just right” is just plain “boring”

Is there a sliding scale that we subconsciously use?

Sure there is, but there is also the need for balance here.

We decide if it needs to be 50/50 or 60/40 or some other point.

Taiji is always changing. White to black… always holding to the Center

Harmonizing absolutes,

Finding and hearing that little voice within that brings balance.

Seeing and feeling the swinging energies moving to and fro.

Keeping your lives from swinging too far.

Being at one with the flow allows one to find the truth.

Testing our commitment and resolve as the wind and tides buffet us

Each time returning to a calm center,

That place where we feel loved.

If the energy is not in harmony then troubles will arise.

Swinging too far towards absolutes and can stress someone,

Not adapting to the stress can break the structure.

Adapt and overcome and return to oneness, stronger then before.

consider this:

love too much… get hurt…

love to little… get hurt…

This used to concern me, but now I have seen the light!

I figure, you either love someone or you don’t.

If you love someone, you appreciate them, giving and accepting love and friendship.

If you enjoy each others company you can talk for hours about anything or nothing at all.

If you love someone, you believe in your heart that they would never hurt you.

If two people are in love, it stirs their inner passions and inspires them to be better individuals.

If you love someone, you care deeply about things they are going through and either help or get out of the way.

If you are in love with someone you would move Heaven and Earth for them.

Loving someone means, being patient when things are not going exactly as you want, working together to be there for each other.

And so…  where are the degrees of separation emotionally?

You either appreciate someone, or you don’t

You either enjoy someone’s company, or you don’t

You either trust someone, or you don’t

You feel an inner passion inspiring you, or you don’t

You’re either patient with someone, or you’re not

You either work through things with someone, or you don’t

Either you will be there to move Heaven and Earth, or you will not.

You either love someone………………………… or you do not.

Copyright Cory Williams 2013

Stop Wasting Your Time

“To attain Tao you must first be egoless” 

No one can grasp Tao with their intellect, and yet there are many that try this approach. I say it is impossible. Since Tao is ungraspable with the mind it really is a waste of time and they will fail. What a shame to work so hard and be so desiring of something only to find that all your hard work and desire has lead you in the opposite direction!

All the Taoist scriptures are clear on this point, they all talk about non-striving and non contrivance, just actually read the Tao Te Ching, or the Chuang Tzu and it is as plain as the nose on your face.

So why then do so many approach Qigong and meditation training from such an intellectual perspective? Healthy ignorance drives curiosity that brings enlightenment.  Overdoing the knowledge part and block true learning. Perhaps, some have bought into the theory that you can attain Tao by learning all these forms… or knowing all this stuff about the internal workings of your energy system or by purchasing some devices, or traveling to some exotic location.  Well now, that is all fine and good, but if you cling to your intellect, you are ego driven and you will never rise above a self imposed limit. Learning Tao, requires one to move far beyond knowledge.

Forget intellectual learning… Real understanding is beyond knowledge

Intellectual learning can be worse than a waste of time, it can be actually harmful.  Real understanding is beyond knowledge. Christian scripture says, “Seek first the kingdom of Heaven and all things will be given unto you.” This is the dirty little secret about health, happiness, and spiritual success. If you value intellectual learning over spirit, you will fail. There is no real need for knowledge, or people, places or things.

A real Taoist knows this; that is why you will never meet a true master that is arrogant, pride-full, profit seeking, egotistical or anything but humble and loving. I have never met a master that had an ego… you might say, to be a true master, you must be egoless.

To attain the Tao is a spiritual thing. That is really all that matters, I don’t follow teachers with huge egos. I don’t believe what some supposed “masters” write in their over-priced books and workshops or purchase products that promise enlightenment from them; many are charlatans. I don’t believe myself either, in that I do not listen to my intellect; we have all been conditioned to believe that we can think our way through life. All we are is that which the spirit projects into our aura, over time our bodies will take on a new configuration. The spirit produces the bodies that we have, and no amount of wishful thinking or contrivance will make one iota of difference.

Be loving and patient, kind and forgiving and seek guidance from people with those qualities and all things will be given unto you. There is no substitute for practice, and only a spiritual approach will give you the impetus to practice. Even a very simplistic practice is sufficient. The fact is, you don’t even need a teacher, you need only simple practice fueled by your spirit!

Hush, be still and know….(your spirit knows the truth) and the truth will set you free.

Copyright Cory Williams 2012

Don’t Feed the Wild Ones

Birds, Humans, Rats…. are all part of nature

I used to feed the birds at work…They were so cute as they would mill around and eat the food I doled out. Occasionally they would get into minor fights over the food but I thought that was amusing. After just a few days they would come so close as to eat out on my hand. Almost immediately they found out that if they attacked my hand I would recoil and drop the food. A huge brawl would ensue as they all fought for the dropped food and of course the larger more aggressive ones got the lions share and the poor, sickly, needy ones got nothing.

Even if they were dolled out the food it still has the negative effect of teaching them something psychologists call: “Learned Helplessness.” Google that! Trust me, it is a cruel thing to cause a mental illness in a society. Another major problem with artificially increasing the food supply is that animals will over reproduce if more resources are available with the inevitable famine occurring during lean times. Anyway you look at it, whether from ignorance or an attempt to control and manipulate, feeding and coddling any wild (free) animal is wrong.

Bite the hand that feeds you….. Well well… what about humans? Are they so different? Isn’t that exactly what they do… give out all these entitlements and soon they realize that if they bite you, or threaten to bite you, that you will give it all to them. Humans can be turned into animals in this way. Humans can also become “pets” to those that feed them, with a subsequent loss of freedom.

Taoists and Boy Scouts both know that it is wrong to interfere with nature and if you do, eventually it will “bite you in the butt.” There are plenty of real charities that help starving children and such. Taoists are charitable and compassionate. They give freely of their time and money to the truly needy but helping people and animals that can help themselves is wrong. It is wrong on so many levels, that I am amazed that some people do it just for their own need to feed good without any concern for the larger cruelty that they are perpetrating.

Bailing out these huge banks and other businesses like Solyndra that nature “selected” for failure was totally wrong. Caving in to huge exorbitant entitlement programs is also wrong,  as is bailing out states that wasted all their money on frivolous programs. Americans (the 53% of them that are actual taxpayers) are borrowing forty cents on the dollar from China to pay for these programs. Billions more are lost because the government is very inefficient. All of this money will need to be paid back in the future by our children and our children’s children.

This the reason Taoists have always had a political philosophy advocating small limited government and non-interference towards things in general.  Politicians that promote these bailout and handout policies are training people to become animals, (“pets”) and using them to protest and contribute to their re-elections. Anyone that cannot see that this is wrong should investigate this topic more. We can not help the people that are truly in need with all these bail-outs and hand-outs, all they do is hurt our society and drive the middle class towards poverty.

Encourage real charity, contribute your time and money to real solutions.

Vote out politicians that make “pets” out of our citizens, destroying freedom and running up our national debts for their personal gains.

Wake up America. Stop feeding the wild animals!

Copyright: Cory Williams 2011

“Social Justice” What would a Taoist do?

HAPPY SERENITY The three vinegar tasters are representative of ‘the Three Teachings of China’. The three teachings are one, the three jewels, love, moderation and humility are one, Buddha saw life as bitter, Confucius saw life as sour, Lao Tzu saw life as it is in its natural state. Life can be sweet when utilized for what it is, nature is not a setter of bitter traps (Buddhism) and sour rules (Confusianism). Life may be bitter or sour, how can we be anything but sweet and kind. Lao Tzu’s inner peace starts with a sweet smile, he simply accepts vinegar for what it is : it’s vinegar. He has no expectations. Most people go trough life expecting certain things, but it is a most liberating experience when we are able to live life with an attitude of no expectations and no regrets. The best things in life are unexpected because there were no expectations. In the beginners mind, there are many possibilities, so many expectations. In Lao Tzu’s mind there are very few. The vinegar dilemma is a well known bitter-sour/sweet yin-yang dilemma. Finally it’s a koan. So what, the Supreme Ultimate Tao is indifferent to human affairs, possibilities, expectations and desires. Expectations are simply another form of false hope, and no one should give up hope.

“We all declare for liberty; but by using the same word we do not all mean the same thing. With some the word liberty may mean for each man to do as he pleases with himself, and the product of his labor; while with others the same word may mean for some men do as they please with other men, and the product of other men’s labor.
Here are two, not only different, but incompatible things, called by the same name – liberty. And it follows that each of these things is, by the respective parties, called by two different and incompatible names – liberty and tyranny.”      Abraham Lincoln

The other day someone asked me what I thought about “social justice.“ I don’t think he liked the answer I gave him.  I often get asked such questions and yet my answer is always quite simple.  What would a Taoist do?  Well I can only tell you what this Taoist would do.  When it comes to Tao, I guess you might say I’m sort of an originalist.

Understanding Tao is all about natural action or non striving, we say “wu wei” which means sometimes the best option is no action. Everything in nature finds balance within the system, and people are part of the system.  The Taoist leads by example, he doesn’t fret about conditions and neither does he contribute to negative conditions.

For thousands of years man has tried to help things along and yet they fail as often as they help, often making matters worse.  I don’t fight wars, I don’t fight anyone.  I show people how to heal the wounds caused by war and suffering.  If humans fight wars and kill each other that is just the way it is.  If you were on a walk in the woods and you came across two tigers fighting, would you intervene? Or would you avoid it and help those that may be injured through no fault of their own?

Oh, we’ll go into this country to help….we’ll ban this life saving insecticide…we’ll steal from the rich and redistribute to the poor… we’ll hate this person for being rich and be just as greedy coveting what he has….lets support the “Arab Spring”…. Let’s back this dictator or promote democracy even if the people there don’t want it…let’s feed the wild animals…kill the wolves…. Don’t kill the wolves…. Oh my GOD the planet is heating up… no its not, its cooling down, somebody do something!… The Jews caused the problems… no it was the Republicans…no it wasn’t, it was the socialist Democrats…

Pour ice in it.. No no no… put heat on it…Make everyone use light bulbs that contain deadly mercury, what are you crazy?  Blame George Bush for spending too much…. Blame Barrack Obama for spending four times what Bush spent…. Invade Iraq… send drones into Pakistan…. Invade Afghanistan…. Use Drones in Yemen… Bomb Libya…Don’t support the people in Syria… Support the people in Egypt… Send troops to Sudan… Don’t support the people in Iran… Bush was a wimp, Obama is a tyrant… Don’t protect our border just other countries borders…WTF?… Don’t let citizens own guns; Give guns to Mexican drug dealers instead…. Force people to pay for services they don’t want…. don’t help them get what they need…Bail out the banks, then tell everyone banks are evil, then take campaign money from them….. Be a feminist and hate men… be a misogynist and hate the women for hating men… if you would be a damn man she wouldn’t hate you…Hate this, Love that… Argue argue argue… Hate hate hate… bla bla bla…Whine and complain… Occupy Wall street…. be indignant…Oh no, we must not anger those people… don’t say that!  Be a people pleaser… go along to get along… do this, do that… Enough! Hog wash!

I say… “Oh Well“… “Big Deal”… “So What”… “Who Cares?”… It really doesn’t mater anyway.
Keep life simple:
Stop making all these rules and laws
Stop making Government bigger
Take responsibility for you own life
Stop complaining and protesting about what you don’t have
Don’t hassle those that have what you want
Stop trying to save the world
Avoid military action
Take care of your homeland
Take care of your health
Love your neighbor
Be peaceful, compassionate and content
And all the world will benefit

I know this may sound cold or indifferent but is it not wrong to tell others what is right or wrong?  Who are we to judge and abridge other peoples liberty? Why should I care what you smoke or do in your bedroom or what kind of light bulb you use or what car you drive or food you eat? Is it right to steal from those that work hard to give to those who do not? Its nobody’s business how much money someone else makes. Why tax people on what they make instead of what they spend?

I do what nature tells me to do. If we all would follow natural law everything would work out fine. I know we need laws and government and on rare occasions even war, but we must also understand that these things are necessary evils and should be kept at the most limited levels.

A Taoist sees that nature will always balance everything out, it is a spiritual thing to look away as the two tigers fight and have faith in the process.

What would a Taoist say about war, global warming, economic inequality, and a whole host of other social issues?  What would I do?  Nothing!
Tao knows what to do…

“…there are plenty of people who believe that freedom includes taking what they need from others — usually through political action. Many of them consider inequalities in wealth to be conditions of slavery. They would continue to fight for the social conditions they want.” 

From:  “How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World”  by  Harry Browne

Copyright: Cory Williams 2011

Lao Tzu was right…

About so many things;

“Those who assist human leaders with the Way do not coerce the world with weapons, for these things are apt to backfire…The unguided soon come to an end” Verse #30

and so the world turns and life goes on.

“Weapons are instruments of ill omen…and are not the tools of the cultured…” Verse #31

“Use straight forwardness for civil government…use non involvement to take the world…the more taboos there are in the world: the poorer the populace is…the more laws you make, the greater the number of thieves..  “Therefore the Sage says: I take no action yet the people transform themselves, I favor quiescence and the people right themselves, I take no action and the people enrich themselves….” Verse #57

“When the government is unobtrusive, the people are pure, when the government is invasive the people are wanting. Calamity is what fortune depends upon, fortune is what calamity subdues. Who knows how it will end?”  Verse #58

“To govern humans and serve the divine nothing compares to frugality, only frugality brings early recovery…” Verse #59

“To best way govern a great nation is the same as frying a small fish…the less you poke it the better…”  Verse #60

“When people are starving, it is because their governments take too much, causing them to starve. when people are hard to control, it is because of the contrivances of their governments.” Verse #75

“…so sages manage effortless service and carryout unspoken guidance…without possessiveness, not dwelling on success…” Verse #2

“Not exalting cleverness causes the people not to contend…” Verse #3

“…Sages put themselves last,and they were first…” Verse #7

“…goodness in words is trustworthiness, goodness in government is order…” Verse #8

“…producing without possessing, doing without presuming, growing without domineering, this is called mysterious power” Verse #10

“…those who embody nobility to act for the sake of the world draw the world to them, while those who embody love to act for the sake of the world seem worthy of the trust of the world.” Verse #14

“Skilled warriors of old were subtle…unknowable, wary, cautious, their gravity was as that of a guest, simple, open, inscrutable…” Verse #15

“Impartiality is the highest nobility…the highest nobility is divine,and the divine is the Way…” Verse #16

“Very great leaders are only known to exist… Great things seem to happen spontaneously…” Verse #17

“When people lose the Way, there is humanitarian duty…” Verse #18

“Eliminate humanitarianism, abandon duty and the people will return to familial love”  Verse #19

“Be tactful and remain whole…economy is gain, excess is confusion…not asserting themselves they are outstanding, not congratulating themselves they are meritorious, not taking pride in themselves they last long…it is just because they do not contend that no one in the world can contend with them” Verse #22

“To speak rarely is natural…” Verse #23

“…Those who glorify themselves have no merit…” Verse #24

“…What can be done about heads of state who take the world lightly in their own self interest? Lack of gravity loses servants of state; instability loses heads of state” Verse #26

“Know the male, keep to the female; be humble toward the world…The great fashioner does no splitting” Verse #28

“Should you want to take the world and contrive to do so, I see that you will not finish…those who contrive spoil it…therefor sages remove extremes, extravagance and arrogance” Verse #29

“The Way plays no favorites, it treats all things as straw dogs” (Sacrificial offerings)

No doubt about it, Lao Tzu  is clear, our world leadership is going the wrong Way.  It sure seems like Lao Tzu got it pretty right-on for book written over two thousand years ago… His writings show us how a “cultured” leader should govern by use of “The Way” and it shows a certain level of “class” that is rare in the world today.  The situations were comparable then, when this book was written and with modern times, and yet the advice given is so sagely it is prophetic.
Consider this observation by Lao Tzu’s contemporary, Chuang Tzu: 

“A petty thief is put in jail. A great brigand becomes a ruler of a State.”

The Way of nature is definitely a free market system, based on individual responsibility, balanced with compassion.  A system where “doing the right thing” means to take care of yourself, your family, friends and neighbors.  The more power you give up to the  “government “ is to submit to tyranny and to subjugate your liberty.

History is full of hard times, with world leaders destroying liberty and the looming “new world order” that promises an authoritative totalitarian “Utopia” for all.   One thing is certain; we need to learn to be independent thinkers.

Tao harmonizes extremism, be it political, religious, or whatever, balance is the way of moderation, and yet Lao Tzu says also:

“What is a good man but a bad man’s teacher, and what is a bad man but a good man’s teacher” Verse #27

My suggestions for anyone reading this is simple;

  • Learn to take care of yourself.
  • Study the Tao Te Ching.
  • Be a free thinker
  • Forget the garbage coming out of the government controlled media.
  • Learn to meditate and to be in control of your thoughts.
  • Do not rely on the health care system
  • Do qigong and Taiji and eat healthy food.
  • Do not be resentful or blame others for the ills of the world
  • Be discerning but not judgmental

Lao Tzu would not be surprised. He was a prophet of such things. Taoism is a libertarian philosophy, that believes in individual rights, you might say “inalienable rights bestowed by their creator.” I think Lao Tzu could have helped write the US constitution and the ten commandments and which are both based on natural law.  Natural law, freedom, frugality, survival of the fittest, with the compassion that nature provides by giving all things an equal opportunity to thrive, should prevail.

Keep your compassion, put your lives in order, remain unattached from the events depicted in the media. Have faith that all these things are natural, yes, even war and tyranny and therefore do not resent these things or other people.  All these things are part of the human learning experience, and yet, haven’t we been here before?  Like the movie “Groundhog Day”, we humans keep getting chances to redeem ourselves, the question is….. Will we get it right this time?

The answer is… It is up to all of us!

Copyright: Cory Williams 2011