“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back.
When you find your path, you must not be afraid. You need to have sufficient courage to make mistakes. Disappointment, defeat, and despair are the tools God uses to show us the way.
Life has a way to test a person’s will.
Either by having nothing happen at all, or by having everything happen at once” …………………The Devil and Miss Prym
“Supreme good is like water.
Water greatly benefits all things, without conflict.
It flows through places that people loathe.
Thereby it is close to the Way.” ……….Chapter 8, Tao Te Ching
The first quote is referred to by a close friend of mine on Facebook. When I read it I was immediately drawn to the wisdom of Tao Te Ching. In chapter 8 of the text the quality of water is explained. Life is a process of constant challenges. From the time of our birth and the challenge to take the first breath outside the mother’s womb to every moment in our childhood to overcome challenges. This process in early life and as a young adult is tackled involuntarily without any forethought. But this involuntary effort starts to diminish as we grow older. This is due to the continuous external inputs into our mind which creates concepts and perceptions which we assume to be the basis of our decision making. There is also another factor which adds additional pressure on our mind. This is the increasing expectations from our relationships both at the family and social level. Every obstacle we face is tackled from the shaky platform constructed by our objective perceptions which are based in our past. Albert Einstein, with his deep understanding, said:
“The significant problems we face today cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them”.
A current management theory pioneered by Claus Otto Scharmer of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) called “Theory U”, the approach to problem solving in today’s data intensive complex business world, is to follow the following steps.
First we need to suspend past patterns. Next we have to see with fresh eyes, next we have to undertake a process of redirecting and this can be achieved by seeing through our intuitive heart level, next we have to let go of the past perceptions and this will result in perceiving new patterns. These sequence of steps will position the problem solver in a presencing and virgin mode to conceptualize new patterns from the data presented. Based on this input, a new prototype solution can be built up.
The step of letting go is that which is most stressed in many spiritual traditions talk off. It is the forerunner to facing hurdles and obstacle in our own realization of our abundant potential. This is the gift of the universal consciousness which is readily available to tap in and very much present in the deeper layers of our own being. The new knowledge is that which fortifies our core strength and leverages our capacity to flow effortlessly around every problem we face.
Now it is the very same thing that we read in the Tao Te Ching.
There are the following attributes about water; they are “Supreme good”, “beneficial” and “devoid of conflict”. Whenever water encounters an obstacle, it either flows around it or over it or through it depending on the size and shape of the obstacle. It does not stop and ponder. The action is spontaneous and there is no knowledge of the past but a grasping of the current situation. It benefits all depending on what and on whom it bestows its quenching and nourishing quality. It is always operating in a non-conflict way which means it is supremely aware of its true destiny. Whether in the process of wetting or eroding, what we humans perceive as good or bad, it is ultimately beneficial to the common good. This take us to the last line “Thereby it is close to the Way”. In Buddhist philosophy and Taoism, the emphasis is on the “way” and not the “destination”. This is quite contrary to many spiritual traditions where the emphasis is on the goal or the ultimate destiny. This approach to life of being in the way, increases our Self-awareness to the maximum level as we are focused on the moment and not on the experience of the past or the anticipation of the future.
These are empowering thoughts.
Love to you all.