10 October 2016

Knowing When to Stop - DaoDeJing 32

Many people teach us not to give up but to continue in order to achieve success. But many failures and disasters come from not knowing when to stop. What is the right thing to do first, how to do it, and when to stop is the wisdom taught by DaoDeJing 32.
DaoDeJing Chapter 32 Text and Translation

Here is mind-map:

The Lessons:

1 Respect Dao - Pollute Not

道常无名,朴,虽小,天下莫能臣也。
The eternal Dao does not want a name for itself. It is always plain and simple. Though little, there is nothing in the world that can rule it.

We can never control and rule the Dao. It is best for us to follow the Dao. Going against Dao will bring disasters and sorrows for us.Th e air we breath has no price but we cannot live without it neither can we control it. Consider the haze from the burning forests that flowed from one and spread throughout the region. No one can build a path in the sky to redirect the haze back to the source. We can only hide in our houses and turn on the air purifier.

2 Rule with Dao -The Best Management
侯王若能守之,万物将自宾。
If only the kings can keep the Dao, then all things will welcome him.

The best management or government is to follow Dao. Never interfere, only facilitate, the livelihoods of the people. The people will want your leadership.

3 Provide Equally - Interfere Not

天地相合,以降甘露,民莫之令而自均。
Heaven and earth meet up to send the dew, without anyone commanding it, it is evenly distributed.

Be as fair as the Heaven and Earth, producing and distributing them equally. Leaving it to the people do decide how much to collect and to use them.
4 Know When to Stop - Don't over do
始制有名,名亦既有,夫亦将知止;知止,可以不殆。
New things are made and named. Once there is a name, it is time to stop as well. Knowing when to stop prevent one from falling in danger.

Start as needed but be careful not to over do it. Know when to stop and know how to let go.

5 We are Part of the Great Dao - Know our position

譬道之在天下,犹川谷之与江海。
The relation between Dao and the world is like the mountain streams that flows through the rivers and the oceans.

We all are like the various mountain streams that flow into the great ocean of Dao. We are not unimportant. We are parts of the great Dao but we are not the masters of Dao.

Lim Liat (c) 10 Oct 2016
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