The subjective experience of intense pain (“That’s all I can take
The transitory and random quality of emotions (“Well, that’s just the way I feel about it
In terms of achieving what I call “being in the right place at the right time,
In my experience, most people are actually seeking recovery from the monotony and anxiety of qualitative repetition. This applies to body, emotions and mind. And that monotony and anxiety involves inertia just as much as over-use, meaning inertia in some areas and over-use in others.
The purest definition of “religious
Men all pay homage to what understanding understands, but no one understands enough to rely upon what understanding does not understand and thereby come to understand.
The Spirit Tower has its guardian, but unless it understands who its guardian is, it cannot be guarded.
For people in thrall to ‘mortality’, the good life means perpetual striving. For Taoists it means living effortlessly, according to our natures. The freest human being is not one who acts on reasons he has chosen for himself, but one who never has to choose. Rather than agonizing about alternatives he responds effortlessly to situations as they arise. He lives not as he chooses but as he must.
Stupidity and Madness
The Tao is clear, yet this clarity requires you to sweep away all your clutter. At all times watch out for your own stupidity, be careful of how your mind jumps around. When nothing occurs to involve your mind, you return to true awareness. When unified mindfulness is purely real, you comprehend the great restoration. The ridiculous ones are those who try to cultivate quietude – as long as body and mind are unstable, it is madness to go into the mountains.
Breathing is the fundamental act of being alive. One can go without thoughts, emotions or sensations, sleeping, talking or any other activity for a long time, without food for weeks, without water for days. But if you stop breathing, you’ll be dead before you finish reading this letter. Because it is the essence of life, some focus upon it seems appropriate.