Saturday, March 9, 2013

Bit by Bit - Chapter 11, Part 5

Trey Smith

Do men delight in what they see? - they are corrupted by colors. Do they delight in what they hear? - they are corrupted by sounds. Do they delight in benevolence? - they bring confusion to Virtue. Do they delight in righteousness? - they turn their backs on reason. Do they delight in rites? - they are aiding artificiality. Do they delight in music? - they are aiding dissolution. Do they delight in sageness? - they are assisting artifice. Do they delight in knowledge? - they are assisting the fault-finders. As long as the world rests in the true form of its inborn nature and fate, it makes no difference whether these eight delights exist or not. But if the world does not rest in the true form of its nature and fate, then these eight delights will begin to grow warped and crooked, jumbled and deranged, and will bring confusion to the world. And if on top of that the world begins to honor them and cherish them, then the delusion of the world will be great indeed! You say these are only a fancy that will pass in time? Yet men prepare themselves with fasts and austerities when they come to describe them, kneel solemnly on their mats when they recommend them, beat drums and sing to set them forth in .dance. What's to be done about it I'm sure I don't know!
~ Burton Watson translation ~
I allow myself to be distracted from my inborn nature because...well...distractions are fun! They titillate and excite. They are sensuous and make me feel "alive." But I pay for these distractions with stress and tension.

I am my own worst enemy!

To view the Index page for this series, go here.

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