Friday, December 25, 2009

Wen Tzu - Verse 94, Part IV

from Verse Ninety-Four
Those who wish to catch fish first dig a channel, those who wish to lure birds first plant trees. When water has accumulated, fish gather; when the trees flourish, birds gather.
~ Wen-tzu: Understanding the Mysteries ~
Often, when we don't meet with success, the key reason is that we did not cultivate the necessary elements with which to be successful with. Instead of reading the situation and figuring out how we can seamlessly move with it, we try to force our will upon it.

Success simply doesn't pop up from nowhere. If I want to grow a tree, I can't just walk to a spot and order the ground to produce what I want. No, I must first plant a seed and that seed must be planted in a place that will receive adequate moisture and sun.

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


  1. is it fair to assume that the author is also aware that the digging of a channel or the planting of a tree do not guarantee success in fishing or bird luring. Laying the groundwork does not make the endeavor a success... but rather it greatly increases the chances of any endeavor resulting in a favorable outcome.

    This is nothing in direct relation to the verse, but it's worth mentioning.

  2. This is something like... 'to wu wei or not to wu wei'.

  3. Possibly a simpler way to achieve success would be to place one's body beneath a tree, beside a pond.

    Even light may create a dark shadow.
    Always remember: you can move.


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