Friday, July 29, 2011

It May Be Rubbing Off On Me

While it is nice to ruminate on the philosophical aspects of Taoism, it doesn't amount to much if the various principles and teachings don't impact our lives in a meaningful way. If all we are going to do is discuss these ideas in a sterile or academic manner, it becomes nothing more that tautological masturbation.

But you know something. I think this Taoism stuff may be rubbing off on me!!

Last night my brother asked me what my aspirations are. To be quite candid, I don't have any. I mean that in all seriousness; I can't think of a one. I'm not saying I don't have projects like this blog, better organizing the house or work in our garden, but I don't have a great desire or ambition to do or be something other than who and what I am.

In a manner of speaking, I am rudderless. For a lot of people, being rudderless is seen in a negative light. But I don't view it that way at all. I am getting better at taking each day as it presents itself and dealing with whatever life dishes out.

To be certain, I am not suggesting that I have freed myself from desire. There are still many things that I want that I probably don't need (like that extra cookie I wolfed down a few minutes ago). I also am not suggesting I have vanquished my penchant for anxiety.

It is more that I have no desire for high achievement, status, or power. I have no overarching goal or a bucket list that I feel I need to meet before moving on to the great beyond.

I guess I have discovered an inkling of what Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu wrote about those many years ago.


  1. I can totally relate. Its like I was born a Taoist, Ive had Taoist beliefs long before I discovered the Tao Te Ching. I am content with the way things are, while there are always things I wish I could have, I feel as if I desire nothing and need nothing. And Im merely an amateur Taoist, unlike yourself.

  2. Holy shit, Batman! I could really give a fuck and I'm really fine with that! If a bombs gonna drop on our heads....what can I do? No goals...

  3. Being rudderless is like Chuang Tzu fishing without bait. The best things happen when there is no plan, no agenda. But you have to be willing to accept the consequences of that.

  4. It's easy to be cool with the rudderless situation when you've got a guaranteed monthly income. Things change dramatically when you lose that. Also it's easier to be free from desire when all your basic needs are met.

    Question: If you have no aspirations, why even bothering posting anything political? Why rant and rave about the injustices in the world if you have no intentions of doing anything about? And if you had intentions of doing anything about it, wouldn't that be an aspiration?

    Question: You say you have no ambition to be anything other than who and what you are, well that's not really saying much, because how could you be anything else? The question is who and what are you, and what are you going to do about it?

    As the advice my dad gave me in the form of a hand written letter on my high school graduation night: Do nothing, nothing will happen.

    Having no aspirations is pretty much the same thing as doing nothing. Watching life pass you by. Well, life happens with or with out you, and yet, doing something is just as much a part of life as doing nothing. The difference is, are you really acting in accord with what you really want? Or is there any disharmony with your thoughts, wishes, and dreams, and your actions?

    Politics. Economics. So long as you post about those subjects, (which by the way I am not in anyway discouraging) you reveal hidden ambitions that may be at odds with your proclamation of having no ambitions.


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