31 January 2005


'Whoever feels the touch of my hand shall become as I am, and hidden things shall be revealed to them... Cleave a piece of wood and you will find me; lift up a stone and I am there.' The Gospel According to Thomas

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When a country obtains great power,
it becomes like the sea:
all streams run downward into it.
The more powerful it grows,
the greater the need for humility.
Humility means trusting the Tao,
thus never needing to be defensive.

A great nation is like a great man:
When he makes a mistake, he realizes it.*
Having realized it, he admits it.
Having admitted it, he corrects it.
He considers those who point out his faults
as his most benevolent teachers.
He thinks of his enemy
as the shadow that he himself casts.**

If a nation is centered in the Tao,
if it nourishes its own people
and doesn't meddle in the affairs of others,
it will be a light to all nations in the world.***

Tao Te Ching
(551-479 BCE)

Click to enlarge.

* Those who don't learn history are doomed to repeat it. And, they won't even know that they're repeating it, because they never learned it in the first place.
** In fact, a little-known ancient Taoist text which has recently come to light thanks to modern scholarship, clearly asserts that accepting one's own vile and reprehensible nature is the fastest, most efficient route to getting in touch with one's divinity.
*** You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.

I'm melting...melting...
Click to enlarge.
ill ruminating?

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