Friday, November 27, 2009

Wen Tzu - Verse 39, Part IV

from Verse Thirty-Nine
The way of heaven is to lower the elevated and raise the depressed, to reduce the excessive and augment the insufficient. River and seas are located where there is a lack of earth, and so the world resorts to them and honors them.
~ Wen-tzu: Understanding the Mysteries ~
There is no way any of us can fully understand the vital essence of the One. It is simply too broad and too vast for our feeble minds to comprehend. Understanding this fact, the Taoist sages realized that one of the best methods to catch significant glimpses into the workings of Tao was by simply observing the natural world around us. Free of the ego that entraps and enslaves humans, nature provides a conceptual manifestation of the workings of the Way.

Unlike our societies which elevate the high and lowers the rest, nature works the opposite way. When one species of flora or fauna becomes too predominant, nature has a way of regaining balance.

If there are too many predators and not enough prey, the predators start to die off to bring the ecosystem back into harmony. If there is too much prey and not enough predators, the latter begin to produce more young so that the numbers begin to balance themselves out again.

If forests and the understory become too lush, fire (through lightening strikes) scorches the earth. If forests and the understory become too sparse, life-giving rain ushers in a new period of growth.

Sometimes an entire species dies off to the point of extinction, yet nature has a way of replacing the extinct species with another. All the while, a delicate balance is maintained which supports and nurtures the life force.

If nature has existed for billions of years utilizing the principles of balance and harmony, doesn't that suggest that each of our lives could be lived to the fullest by adopting the same principles?

This post is part of a series. For an introduction, go here.

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