Tao Te Ching – Lao Tzu – Chapter 32

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道常無名。

樸雖小,1天下莫能臣也。

侯王若能守之,萬物將自賓。

天地相合,以降甘露,民莫之令而自均。

始制有名,名亦既有,夫亦將知止,知止所以不殆。

譬道之在天下,猶川谷之與江海。

The Tao is always nameless.
Though in its simple and primordial state, it may be small,
But no one in the world can conquer it,
If a feudal prince or the king could guard and hold it, all would spontaneously submit themselves to it.

Heaven and Earth (under its guidance) unite together and send down the sweet dew, which, without the directions of men, reaches equally everywhere as of its own accord.

As soon as the system is established, there are names.
Once the names (positions) appear, men need to stop before going too far.
They can be free from all risk of failure and error when they know to stop.
Tao in the world is like a river flowing home to the sea.

Image result for image of river flow into the sea

The relation of the Tao to the world is like that of the rivers and seas to the streams from the valleys.

In this chapter, through the no-name, simple, and small property of Tao, it does not contend with the world, so that the ruler can uphold the nature of the Tao, and then apply it to daily life, where all things will submit.

When the Yin and Yang of heaven and earth meet, the dew will come down evenly without the orders of the king.

When we start to have the system, the names appear, thereby fame and fortune follow, and it is up to us to know where to stop. Only then we will be free from dangers. For example, “Tao” has all things, and does not expect anything in return; it is like the water of valley, flows into the sea, and never expect anything back.

Do One Good Deed a Day

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This article was originally posted in 2012. Somehow it got lost. I reposted it here to share with the readers.

When a news reporter asked  a successful businessman what was the most important teaching that his father gave him, he replied, “Do one good deed a day.”

One day when my son came to see me, I started to tell him about the story of this businessman and how he should do the same. He then told me he helped a woman in need a few days ago. He had seen her crying as she paced back and forth in front of her apartment building. My son stopped the car and asked her whether she needed help. She said that her son was in the emergency ward at the UCLA Medical Center due to a car accident, and she was waiting for a taxi to come and pick her up, but there was no sign of the cab. She could not bear to delay being at her son’s side one more minute. So my son gave her a ride to UCLA.

Sometimes a small deed you do for others may be remembered forever by them. I still remember someone stopped to help my family after our car broke down in the middle of the night several years ago as we were passing through Texas. It was late, dark and very scary along that Texas highway. So when this stranger stopped and took us to the repair shop in the middle of the night, we were full of appreciation. We wanted to pay him for his kindness, but he declined and told us one thing we would never forget: just do for others what I’ve done for you.

I also remember well the good deed of my friend’s son. He brought a homeless person to the supermarket on his birthday to let the person pick out whatever he needed and then paid for the items. What a  touching act. In fact, this was a birthday present he was giving himself!

In my line of work – marketing for my home health business — I give the doctors I work with my business card which some of them keep with them to remind them of the Chinese proverb written on the back:

If you want happiness for an hour– take a nap.
If you want happiness for a day–go fishing.
If you want happiness for a month– get married.
If you want happiness for a year-inherit a fortune.
If you want happiness for a lifetime-help someone else.

Indeed, when you do one good deed for others, you brighten someone’s day and yours, too.

 

Healing From Nature(2)

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The Birds-of-Paradise Project reveals the astounding beauty of 39 of the most exquisitely specialized animals on earth. After 8 years and 18 expeditions to New Guinea, Australia, and nearby islands, Cornell Lab scientist Ed Scholes and National Geographic photojournalist Tim Laman succeeded in capturing images of all 39 species in the bird-of-paradise family for the first time ever. This trailer gives a sense of their monumental undertaking and the spectacular footage that resulted. Filmed by Tim Laman, Ed Scholes, and Eric Liner. Produced and Edited by Eric Liner.

Tao Te Ching – Lao Tzu – Chapter 31

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夫佳兵者,不祥之器,物或惡之,故有道者不處。
君子居則貴左,用兵則貴右。
兵者不祥之器,非君子之器,不得已而用之,恬淡為上。
勝而不美,而美之者,是樂殺人。夫樂殺人者,則不可以得志於天下矣。

吉事尚左,凶事尚右。
偏將軍居左,上將軍居右,言以喪禮處之。
殺人之衆,以哀悲泣之,戰勝以喪禮處之。

Of all things, soldiers are instruments of evil,
hated by men.
Therefore the religious man (possessed of Tao) avoids them.
The gentleman favors the left in civilian life,
But on military occasions favors the right.

Soldiers are weapons of evil.
They are not the weapons of gentlemen.
When the use of soldiers cannot be helped,
The best policy is calm restraint.

Even in victory, there is no beauty,
And who calls it beautiful
Is one who delights in slaughter.
He who delights in slaughter
Will not succeed in his ambition to rule the world.

The things of good omen favor the left.
The things of ill omen favor the right.
The lieutenant-general stands on the left,
The general stands on the right.
That is to say; it is celebrated as a Funeral Rite.

The slaying of multitudes should be mourned with sorrow.
A victory should be celebrated with the Funeral Rite.
(Translation by Lin Yutang )

Image result for 道德經 - 第31章

The image is from http://www.sohu.com/a/207248564_816314.

This chapter is the continuation of chapter 30. Lao Tzu did tell us that he did not like a war in the previous chapter. Here he says to us not to have too much joy if we won the battle. His view is somewhat different from ordinary people.

Most people think that winning victories is a celebration of the occasion. They will lift the country joyfully on their merits and deeds. However, Lao Tzu held the opposite view. He considered winning victories joyless, and those who praised the victorious warriors, those like to kill. Anyone who likes to kill people cannot win the world. The triumph of the war in his eyes is not for celebrating, but to be treated as a funeral.

Granted, Lao Tzu was born 2500 years ago during the Warring States period, and he had seen the tragedies of a defeated country being divided up, annexed, and ruled, and the people lived in hot water. Lao Tzu is benevolent and a benefactor. Knowing and seeing the war being brutal, merciless and making the people suffered, he can not help but oppose the war.

Easter Miracle

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Image result for Happy Easter

(The image is from https://www.potterybarn.com/products/happy-easter-eggs-vase-filler/)

On this Easter holiday, I can not help recalling the miracle that had happened to my friend -Emily six years ago.
Here is her story-

Emily practiced medicine in Southern California.
Her hobby was to ride the bike 5, 10 ..25 miles in her spare time.
So she is strong and healthy.
Nobody would have thought that someone as healthy as her, a doctor even,
would get a gallbladder infection all of a sudden.
Just moments earlier she was treating patients.
The next minute she was sent to Hospital.
Where another doctor had to save her.

Who is to know that the fierce battle between life and death
awaited her,
She fought and struggled many days in I.C.U.
She needed oxygen to sustain her life.
I could not help but cry when I visited her.
I thought back to when she fell to the ground from the top of a mountain a few years ago.
I could not help asking God, “Why?”

Her doctor was going to give up and remove her mechanical support.
Twice, he did not do it.
The first time, he thought he should give her a chance because she, too, is a doctor.
His heart told him not to do it the second time.
I knew his heart wanted him to wait for God’s healing miracle.

Surely, that night when the doctor did not take any action,
She had a dream,
In her dream, she saw a man praying for her under a tree.
He turned his head slightly when he finished his prayer.
She saw His face, and she believed that He was Jesus Christ.
Miraculously, her condition improved every day after her dream.
And she could finally leave the I.C.U.
A few days later she was discharged from the hospital.
That day was Easter Sunday!
It was indeed a miracle.

Footnote:
Upon discharge from the hospital, her doctor told her that her lung function would only maintain 60% all of her life. She told me that she gained back 100 % of her lung function when I visited her two months later.

This is the updated and shorter version of my earlier post- Love, Orchids & a Miracle (http://loveneverending.com/love-orchid-a-miracle/ ).

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