Tao thought: Nonyielding and daodejing Verse 65


When in the arena,
Yield not to an aggressor.
When outside the arena,
Affirm compassion.

This world and this society are competitive. Tao uses the metaphor of the warrior to meet that competition. Warriors never yield to their opponents. They may sidestep, but they do not give way.

Whether you are a lawyer, police officer, fire fighter, doctor, businessperson, athlete, or any one of numerous other professions, you compete against either other people or natural forces. But there is a right way and a wrong way to compete. Avoid anger and greed. Use concentration and awareness.

Coincidentally, concentration and awareness are also necessary for spirituality. That is why the follower of Tao incorporates the way of the warrior into training. The warrior and the sage both seek to transcend emotion and petty thinking, to perfect themselves, and to live lives of the deepest truth.

But when outside the arena, do not forget to be kind. Leave behind competitive aggression. You must still have awareness, concentration, and reflex, but the expression will be different. Your compassion must not falter. That is why the combination of the way of the warrior with the way of Tao is the ultimate symbol of versatility. Such a follower of Tao commands the extremes of the universe.

365 Tao
Daily Meditations

Deng Ming-Dao (author)
ISBN 0-06-250223-9

Tao Te Ching Translated by various current scholars


The ancient masters of the Way
tried not to enlighten
but to keep men in the dark

What makes the people hard to rule is knowledge
who rules the realm with knowledge spreads evil in the realm
who rules without knowledge spreads virtue in the realm

Who understands these two
understands the universal key
this is called Dark Virtue

Dark Virtue goes deep
goes far
goes the other way
until it reaches perfect harmony



In ancient times those who practiced Tao
didn't want to enlighten people,
but to keep them natural and simple.

When cleverness and intellect abound,
people don't do well.
A leader who governs with cleverness
cheats his people.
A leader who governs with simplicity
is a blessing to his people.

These are the two alternatives.
Understanding them is subtle insight.

The use of subtle insight
brings all things back into the oneness.



The ancient Masters
didn't try to educate the people,
but kindly taught them to not-know.

When they think that they know the answers,
people are difficult to guide.
When they know that they don't know,
people can find their own way.

If you want to learn how to govern,
avoid being clever or rich.
The simplest pattern is the clearest.
Content with an ordinary life,
you can show all people the way
back to their own true nature.


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