Dao De Jing
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Verse Seventy Three


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Wed Apr 29, 2009

Verse Seventy Three
Stephen Mitchell

The Tao is always at ease.
It overcomes without competing,
answers without speaking a word,
arrives without being summoned,
accomplishes without a plan.

Its net covers the whole universe.
And though its meshes are wide,
it doesn't let a thing slip through.

Verse Seventy Three
Ursula K. Le Guin

Brave daring leads to death.
Brave caution leads to life.
The choice can be the right one
or the wrong one.

Who will interpret
the judgment of heaven?
Even the wise soul
finds it hard.

The way of heaven
doesn't compete
yet wins handily,
doesn't speak
yet answers fully,
doesn't summon
yet attracts.
It acts
perfectly easily.

The net of heaven
is vast, vast,
wide-meshed,
yet misses nothing.

Verse Seventy Three
Ron Hogan

Those who dare to be bold die.
Those who dare to be careful survive.
So--what do you want to do?

Why is life like that, you ask?
I don't know.

This is how Tao works:
It doesn't push itself,
and it always succeeds.
It acts silently, and it always reacts.
It can't be summoned;
it comes whenever it's ready.
It can't be rushed; it's always on time.

"Heaven casts a wide net,
with big holes,"
Lao Tzu used to say,
"but nothing ever gets by it."


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Wed Apr 29, 2009

arrives without being summoned,
accomplishes without a plan.

That is how seeing works for me. It arrives without being summoned, on its own.

doesn't speak
yet answers fully

The questions we put into words are answered in silence. We no longer expect answers in words. Having received the answers in silence, the questions fall away.

Its net covers the whole universe.
And though its meshes are wide,
it doesn't let a thing slip through.

I like the image of a net for awareness. It's virtually empty, yet it can hold the ten thousand things. Its mesh is as wide as the world.

What do you all see in this verse?

Jim


From: simon
Posted: Fri May 01, 2009

Hi Jim, and all;
Yes to all you noted.
Quote:
doesn't summon
yet attracts.

Is a beautiful description, too.

Quote:
Those who dare to be bold die.
Those who dare to be careful survive.

Seems we are back to the "daring not to be first"

George Harrison, put a beautiful line in his "While my guitar gently weeps" song (the accoustic version): "I watch from the wings at the play you are staging..."

The utter simplicity is so beautiful...
and so close to home!


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Sat May 02, 2009

Hi Simon,

I like those quotes you pointed out.

1. The aware space attracts in silence. Very subtle.

2. I might seem backwards to think of daring to be careful. But everything about the Dao and about Seeing is backwards and reversed and upside down. Sane living is living down the rabbit hole. I've read that no one ever accused Lao Tzu of having a sense of humor. Come on! This is very funny stuff. It's almost a cosmic joke, isn't it? Reality is the reverse of what we think it is. Lao Tzu might just be saying: Dare to take a careful look.

Jim


From: simon
Posted: Sun May 03, 2009

Hi Jim and All,
Yes to your points - especially the humo(u)r!

You say
Quote:
Dare to take a careful look.

I like the "careful", not as in cautious, more "attentive"...
What was that phrase of Douglas you posted a while back?
"See, and see what happens..."
Wonderland indeed!


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