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The ‘Way’ September 15, 2008

Filed under: healing,inspiration,Leadership,peace,Taoism — Karen Shafer @ 7:55 pm


The ‘Way’


“The mystery of the ‘Way’ [in Taoism] can never be explained or named, but we can live it.  No matter what we think, say, or do we are embraced by the ‘Way.’…   [It] is infinitely compassionate, supporting and nurturing even in our ignorance, but we cannot truly be wholly nourished until we forgive ourselves our mistakes along the way and thus cease blaming others for our wounds.  The Chinese I Ching says “no blame.”  The Lord’s Prayer says similarly, “Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.”…


The separation of spirit and nature is based on the subject-object split, the great divide in consciousness that says sense perception and logical thought are objective whereas feeling and intuitive thought are subjective.  In our scientifically oriented Western culture, objectivity is seen as the main criterion of truth, and subjectivity is considered personal and relative.  But an insight, vision, or intuition may be more true than logic and description of objects.  The test is the effectiveness of living the vision.


Once we lose the ‘Way’ in this subject-object abyss, innumerable are the ills that grow out of it.  The abuse of nature for technological exploitation, the resultant pollution, illnesses, and lack of wholesome food, water, and air for life are extreme signs of losing the ‘Way.’  God and the world seem to be antithetical because humans create culture in ignorance of spiritual and natural laws.  Then supreme effort is required to return us to the ‘Way.’…  It necessitates awareness of the earth as a living being, not inert matter to be exploited.  As traditions break down we are forced to meet the ‘Way,’ which is both a mystery and a source for regenerative global culture.  The essence of spiritual traditions can never be lost, for the ‘Way’ is perennial wisdom, eternal truth.


The Tao, the ‘Way,’ is the eternal harmony of heaven, the human and earth in all times and places.  It is ever renewed and yet inexhaustible…”


                                        ~~Rowena Pattee Kryder, Introduction to the Translation by                                                                                     Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English of Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu


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