It seems I’m not alone in doing a bit of a ‘mission review’. Many people are. May my North Star become clear and gleaming, with full instructions and Ts&Cs attached in coming days.
-10- While carrying your active life on your head can you embrace the quiet spirit in your arms, and not let go? While being fully focused on your vital breath can you make it soft like that of a newborn babe? While cleaning your inner mirror can you leave it without blemish? While loving the people and ruling the country can you dispense with cleverness? While opening and closing the gates of heaven can you be like a mother bird? While penetrating the four quarters with your insight can you remain simple? Help the people live! Nourish the people! Help them live yet lay no claim to them. Benefit them yet seek no gratitude. Guide them yet do not control them. This is called the hidden Virtue. (Tao Te Ching Chapter 10)
So what stands out?
‘…Can you remain simple?’
Apparently with some difficulty, though to be honest, I do appear to be developing the art – particularly around daily routines, which I have ever craved and simultaneously sabotaged.
If takes inner balance to live a life of outer balance (which includes that repetition, rhythm, routine of which you speak).
And how do I absorb more inner balance?
By practicing repetition, rhythm and routine.
Ha! Very smart. Yes… Chop wood, carry water. Tell me about the ‘happy serenity’ of the Taoist, before I get too dour about it all.
The Taoist finds astonishment and perfection in all things. She doesn’t seek to ‘accept’, ‘tolerate’, ‘detach from’, ‘put up with’ or ‘perfect’ anything. She flows with all that is. If something is displeasing to her eye (inner or outer), she simply looks at something else. Her eye is constantly ranging for the next delight. And the next. And the next. In this way, she remains simple. When the ‘simple’ person coos at bubbles passing in front of her, the ‘clever’ person scoffs and points instead to her observations of the trials in the world ‘over there’. Who is the happier person in that scenario? Be the simple person who can train her eye to focus upon the bringers of joy in this world.
May I remain simple this day and each. May I be enchanted by the delights around me. May I invest my time and focus in that which nourishes, helps, softens and benefits. May I carry my ‘active life on my head’ and ’embrace the quiet spirit’ in my arms, and not let go. May all beings be protected, healed and nourished this day. Especially our children as they travel and roam and grow and develop and learn and prosper and find their missions too.
I am remaining simple.