Saturday, January 30, 2010

Wen Tzu - Verse 143, Part I

from Verse One Hundred Forty-Three
A vast territory and a large population are not enough to constitute power; strong armor and sharp weapons cannot be relied upon to ensure victory; high ramparts and deep moats are not enough to give security; strict punishments and stern laws are not enough to constitute authority.
~ Wen-tzu: Understanding the Mysteries ~
Whether we reference a nation or an individual person, if we're always steeling ourselves for war and conflict, we are creating our own negative energy. If our mindset always is to be prepared to attack or defend, we unwittingly set up the very atmosphere that engenders animosity, resentment, jealousy and hatred.

One of the key problems with the concept of power is that we must always work fervently to maintain it. If we drop our guard, even for the briefest of moments, someone else might swoop in to catch us off guard. So, to defend against this happenstance, we must stand at attention 24/7.

Of course, no matter how powerful we think we are, there is likely to be someone else even more powerful. So, we must commit to an arms race -- building our capabilities against known and phantom menaces. There is no ceiling. We must continue to amass more and more weapons, knowledge and know-how because we never can be certain what the other side is amassing too.

Can you see how we are generating our own stress and tension? Constant movement never allows one the chance for repose. Being ever full never allows the opportunity to be empty. We're all yang with no yin.

The unbalanced load eventually will topple.

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


  1. True indeed! Excellent observation. I realized this myself.

    Check out this post:
    Arm Me With Harmony

  2. The conquerers may take our "property", but can they ever really take our thoughts, minds, and souls? I think not.

  3. C. Om,
    Very good post on your part -- though all your posts are super!

    In German, it's said Die Gedanken Sind Frei (thoughts are free)!


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