Madhu Bazaz Wangu | Writing & Meditation
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Writing & Meditation

Seventy-Ninth Chapter

Seventy-Ninth Chapter Tao Te-Ching After a bitter quarrel, some resentment remains. What can one do about it? Being content with what you have is always best in the end. Someone must risk returning injury with kindness, or hostility will never turn to goodwill. So wise always give without expecting gratitude. One with true virtue always seeks a way to give. One who lacks virtue always seeks a way to get. To the giver comes the fullness of life; to the taker, just an empty hand. # As I Understand It: When we hold on to resentments we give away our inner power. Whoever in your life stirs negative emotions in you--boss, ex-husband, mother-in-law, son or sibling-it drains your energy. "Hostility will never turn to goodwill" unless you reverse the feeling and return hurtful feelings with forgiveness. Those who follow the way of the Tao...

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Seventy-Eighth Chapter

Seventy-Eighth Chapter Tao Te-Ching Nothing in the world is softer and weaker than water. But for attacking the hard and the unyielding, nothing can surpass it. The weak overcomes the strong: The soft surpasses the hard. In the entire world, there is no one who does not know this, but no one can master the practice. Therefore the sage remains serene in the midst of sorrow. Evil cannot enter his heart. Because he has give up helping, he is people's greatest help. True words appear paradoxical. # As I Understand It: Lao Tzu had special reverence for the attributes of the elements of nature. One of his favorites was water. As mysterious as the Tao, he recommended emulating it's behavior. Water is persistent and patient. It yields. Gentle, patient and yielding individuals wear away harsh and hardhearted. Water settles at the lowest levels. Those...

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Seventy-Seventh Chapter

Seventy-Seventh Chapter Tao Te-Ching Way of the Tao is like the drawing a bow. The high is lowered, the low is raised. When it is excessive, it reduces. When it is insufficient, it supplements. The mankind is the opposite: It reduces the deficiency and supplements the surplus. It strips the needy to serve those who have too much. Only the one who has the Tao offers his surplus. The sage keeps giving because there is no end to his wealth. He acts without expectation, succeeds without taking credit, does not think he is better than anyone else. # As I Understand It: The way of the Tao maintains balance. When there is surplus, it reduces; when there is deficiency, it increases. But people do not follow the Way. They are always interested in themselves and do not share their excess. Those who follow the...

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Seventy-Sixth Chapter

Seventy-Sixth Chapter Tao Te-Ching A man is born tender and weak. At his death he is stiff and hard. All things, including the grass and trees are tender and supple in life; dry and brittle in death. Therefore stiffness is a companion of death; flexibility a companion of life. An army that cannot yield will be defeated. A tree that cannot bend will break in the wind. The hard and stiff will be broken; The soft and supple will prevail. # As I Understand It: The most durable things in nature are soft, gentle and adaptable. Water adapts itself to any shape, trees and grass bend in storm, and newborns bend their limbs like a great yogi. Lifeless things are hard, dead bodies stiff. Rigid thoughts and stubborn conduct are unexciting, supple and flexible stimulating. Living things are pliable. By being adaptable...

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Seventy-Fifth Chapter

Seventy-Fifth Chapter Tao Te-Ching When rulers eat too much tax grain people starve. When the government is too intrusive people lose their spirit. If the government acts for people's benefit, leaves them alone and trusts them people's lives become valuable. # As I Understand It: Lao Tzu voiced the deprived and the oppressed. During his lifetime the Chinese rulers imposed burdensome taxation on the ordinary people. They kept the tax money and flaunted their good fortune. Ultimately the masses lost their spirit and rebelled. The sage wanted rulers and officials to leave people alone. Even now, this teaching works at home as well as workplace. Those in power must not take advantage of their subordinates. Trust those under your charge. Too much interference makes people lose respect for and distrust authority. Allow the people to...

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Seventy-Fourth Chapter

Seventy-Fourth Chapter Tao Te-Ching The people are not afraid of death Why then threaten them with death? Suppose the people are always afraid of death and we can seize those who are vicious and kill them, Who would dare to do so? There is always master executioner who kills. To take executions for the master executioner is like hewing wood for the master carpenter. Whoever undertakes to hew wood for the master carpenter rarely escapes injuring his own hands. # As I Understand It: Our birth, life and death are our reality. Instead of being afraid of death, why not get comfortable with the idea. And deeply understand that we are not in charge of making decisions of anyone's time of death, not even our won. When our inner te is linked with the Tao we feel united with the everlasting...

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Seventy-Third Chapter

Seventy-Third Chapter Tao Te-Ching Bold action against others results in death. Bold action in harmony with the Tao leads to life. Both of these things sometimes benefit and sometimes harm. Nature's way is to conquer without striving. It does not speak, yet it is answered. It does not ask, yet it is supplied with all that it needs. It does not hurry, yet it completes everything in time. The net of heaven catches all. Though its mesh is course, But it misses nothing. # As I Understand It: Courage is a fine quality but rashness is dangerous. Often our first impulse is to resent, speed up, get back to win. Listen to your opponent's point of view. You may not agree. Be alert not irate. Tao oriented individuals do not demand, resent, push or hurry to win. Like Mother Nature they...

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Seventy-Second Chapter

Seventy-Second Chapter Tao Te-Ching When people lack a sense of awe, there is disaster. When people do not fear worldly power. A greater power will arrive. Do not despise the conditions of your birth. Do not resist the natural course of your life. In this way you will not be weary of this world. Therefore the sage knows himself but makes no show himself. Therefore he loves himself but does not exalt himself. He prefers what is within to what is without. # As I Understand It: You have received the gift of life, say "thank you." Showing no gratitude would ruin this treasure. When the gift is accepted graciously you eliminate self-limitations. Accept your birth, body and the natural course of your life without pretence. Simple acceptance will link you to your inner tao. Accept that you have power over...

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Seventy-First Chapter

Seventy-First Chapter Tao-te Ching Knowing ignorance is strength. Ignoring knowledge is sickness. Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we be free from the disease. The sage is free from the disease but he recognizes it. This is the secret of his health. # As I Understand It: Not being an intellectual (a person whose rational thinking is cut-off from intuitive feeling) is strength. Ignoring the knowledge of Tao is unhealthy. Sickness is being out of balance with the Tao. The Tao is kindness, contentment and patience. The non-Tao thinking expresses itself in sickness. Sick mind results in sick body. Only those who are sick of sick thoughts stay healthy. They may feel pain, they may hurt but they do not suffer. Pain and hurt are natural phenomenon but suffering is a personal choice. Mental as...

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Seventieth Chapter

Seventieth Chapter Tao-te Ching My teachings are very easy to understand and very easy to practice; yet so few in this world understand, and so few are able to practice. My words have a source (Nature). My deeds have a master (Tao). The people have no knowledge of this, therefore they have no knowledge of me. This is why sage dresses plainly, even though his interior is filled with precious jade. # As I Understand It: Lao Tzu teaching is simple: live a Tao-centered life rather than an ego-centered one. Allow the life-sustaining energy of the Tao to guide you. Abstain from hateful thoughts and deeds. Give up trying to control the world. Stay simple. Be humble. Respect your own creative genius and that of the others. The sage-like individuals dress plainly but within they conceal treasures. The treasures, the "precious jade"...

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