Dao De Jing
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Verse Sixty One


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Fri Jan 09, 2009

Verse Sixty One
Witter Bynner, 1944

A large country is the low level of interflowing rivers.
It draws people to the sea-end of a valley
As the female draws the male,
Receives it into absorbing depth
Because depth always absorbs.
And so a large country, inasfar as it is deeper than a small country,
Absorbs the small-
Or a small country, inasfar as it is deeper than a large country,
Absorbs the large.
Some countnes consciously seek depth into which to draw others.
Some countries naturally have depth into which to draw others:
A large country needs to admit,
A small country needs to emit,
And so each country can naturally have what it needs
If the large country submit.

Verse Sixty One
Herrymon Maurer, 1985

A great country is one that downward flows
To be the confluence of all beneath heaven
And beneath-heaven's female.
For the feminine overcomes the masculine
By quietude and lowliness.
Hence,
By lowering itself before a small country,
A great country wins over a small country.
By lowering itself before a large country,
A small country wins over a large country.
The one wins by lowering itself,
The other by keeping itself lowered.
Great countries wish nothing more
Than to shelter others:
Small countries with nothing more
Than to be sheltered.
Since each gets its wish,
The great country ought to make itself lower.


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Sat Jan 10, 2009

Images again. What is the Great Country, the confluence of all beneath heaven? It posesses quietude, depth, and lowliness€to use the words of the translators. Where is that country? Douglas used the expression "Country of Everlasting Clearness." I don't know where that expression comes from (do you?), but I do know it's the same country.

Great countries wish nothing more
Than to shelter others:
Small countries with nothing more
Than to be sheltered.

This Country of Everlasting Clearness provides shelter for all existence. Is there a greater power or privelege than this?

A large country needs to admit
A small country needs to emit

Admit/emit€nice pairing. Aren't these the yin/yang (receptive/active) complements again? The Great Country admits, receives, contains, holds, absorbs, and embraces€just as the sea, by lying low, absorbs all the rivers of the world. The Great Country, the lowest location in awareness, absorbs the world. The experiment of bowing before the evidence shows this Great Country is below the bottom line.

Maybe that's too much detail, but isn't the image of the Great Country (of Everlasting Clearness) a wonderful image?

Jim


From: Steve Palmer
Posted: Sat Jan 10, 2009

Hi Jim

Yes I love that description " The Country of Everlasting Clearness "

The Big Country........ ever fresh and unpolluted.
There's room for all and everything
and no one is ever left out.

Steve


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Sun Jan 11, 2009

Hi Steve,

I googled "country of everlasting clearness" and came up with an article by Richard.

It even mentions that " this amazing and mysterious river of life flows through me, into me, out of me." Witter Bynner begins with: "A large country is the low level of interflowing rivers." Pretty much the same if we agree that the large country is the country of everlasting clearness.

Richard titles the last section of his article: The Simple Truth Of The Way Things Are. I love that title. That's what I think Douglas and Loa Tzu are doing€giving us the simple truth of the way things are, of life's design. Lao Tzu isn't telling us how to live or what to do. How many times does he say to do nothing? It's enough to see that one lives in the large country (of clearness).

Jim


From: Steve Palmer
Posted: Sun Jan 11, 2009

Hi Jim

Quote:
It's enough to see that one lives in the large country (of clearness).

Sounds good to me Jim.

The implications of living in that country ?
Openess, intuition, empathy.
at easeness with the opposites of life,

at ease with not having it all sorted out,
trusting life, gratitude, etc

Though this is always changing the Country is always boundless and clear.

It's enough to see that one lives in The Country of Everlasting Clearness
or
See and see what happens.

Steve


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Sun Jan 11, 2009

Hi Steve,

You say: at ease with not having it all sorted out. Well, I'm going to stay at ease. I've been making more and more of that kind of mistake. I sent two messages meant for LFY to the digital photo group. I don't know what they made of them. They were polite and said nothing.

Anyway, I like what you say about not having it all sorted out. Having this one big Fact sorted out is enough. All the rest is just detail. And that's not to put down detail. There's more than the devil in it. There's also all things bright and wonderful.

Jim


From: Steve Palmer
Posted: Sun Jan 11, 2009

Hi Jim

Quote: Anyway, I like what you say about not having it all sorted out.

Recently my Tai Chi teacher was talking about the Yin Yang sign in Taoism and the whole thing about the opposites in life came up.

We have to live with them and "surf the sea of samsara" in the most relaxed fashion we can.

As long as you've got a body I don't think the sea of opposites will ever dry up.
So you can turn to teachers , religion, booze , inward, the internet or whatever for ways to surf but you can't iron the waves flat.

Stephen Levine had an idea for a book years ago which amused me.
At the time " I'm OK and your OK " was a popular book by another author.

Stephen Levine said his version would be called
" I'm not OK , your not OK.....but that's OK "
which sounded like the more workable model !

So There is The Country of Everlasting Clearness AND the daily ups and downs.

I know you know all this Jim but writing it down helps to remind me !

Steve


From: simon
Posted: Mon Jan 12, 2009

Quote:
you can't iron the waves flat

even when you try VERY hard!

Love that!

Quote:
It draws people to the sea-end of a valley
As the female draws the male,
Receives it into absorbing depth
Because depth always absorbs

A beautiful way of putting what happens as soon as the space on these shoulders is admitted...

Thanks, one and all, for the input on this verse, really brought it all to life!

Simon


From: Steve Palmer
Posted: Sat Apr 18, 2009

In April 1996, Montpellier, France, Douglas gave a talk and Catherine translated the talk into French.

The talk is on the journey to
" The Country of Everlasting Clearness "
The title in french is Le pays de la clarte eternelle.

It can be found at this link.

http://www.visionsanstete.com/enregistrements/Douglas_Harding_audio.htm

Steve


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