Episode from the podcastThe Tao Te Ching for Everyday Living

Tao Te Ching Verse 52: Integrating with the Tao (Owning Your Stuff)

Released Friday, 18th September 2020
Good episode? Give it some love!
Tao Te Ching Verse 52

translated by Anonymous

The world sprouts from something
People could call it the mother of the world
When one knows that mother, one knows her child
One who becomes like that child again, will know the mother
And for the rest of his life nothing can harm him ever again
He won't criticize anyone and lets no one influence him
And his life will be without worries
But one who condemns others and whose interests concern only himself
Will be full of worries the rest of his life
One that sees a gleam of light in darkness sees the light at the end of the tunnel
Holding on to that gleam of light requires strength
One who follows that light, turns back to the original light
Then all danger is gone
And you'll live the eternal life

Photo by Lucas Benjamin on Unsplash

Using the Light to Integrate
Lao Tzu says to use the brightness of the way to return to the light.  This unlocked a piece of the Integral puzzle for me today.  In the Yin Yang symbol, there is the Yang, or the bright side, and the Yin, which is the dark side.  Until now, we have been talking about the Yang as being physical energy, material things, and the Yin as being that dark, unmanifested side of the Tao.  
Recently, a Taoist master has come into my life, even though he doesn’t know it - I got my hands on some literature that explains the Yin Yang as it applies to humans and our lives.  A simple way to put what I’ve learned is that the Yang represents the light that Lau Tzu is talking about and the Yin represents our desires to fulfill our corporeal senses.  So if we were to simplify that a bit more, it would be that Yang is my willingness to move into Harmony with the Tao and Yin would be the selfish desires for emotional & financial security, prestige, and intimacy on my terms.
So now it makes sense - using the light of the Tao, or constantly working to move into Harmony with the Tao, sort of as a beacon for when I get lost in my selfish ego’s desires, I can remember what to do when I recognize I’m all up in my ego and move forward into Harmony again.  So of course, this is a part of the human experience, isn’t it?  We’re here, participating, always going back and forth between Harmony with the Tao and questing to satisfy our base natures.  We have the ideal, which is Harmony with the Tao, but we fall short of it often - at least I do, ya’ll.  
As I continue to refine my practice, partly by getting quiet and seeing the small disturbances in my Yin, and then partly by remembering to return to Harmony, I keep this process going.  Like filtering dirty water through charcoal, over and over.  The more I do this, the clearer the water gets.
So for now, that seems to be the mechanism of integration that we talked about earlier and as described by Lao Tzu.  For me, the takeaway for this verse seems to be this:
  • Everything I do causes ripples
  • There’s no way to immediately know my center; I must practice and practice to become aware of it.
  • By trying my best to move into Harmony with the Tao, I am integrating my being and thus continue to purify my life’s energy.
And the point of all this?  Less suffering and more natural joy in my life, for starters.  I suspect that there are more esoteric benefits but I’m content to stay with this for now.

Creators & Guests

We don't know anything about the creators of this episode yet. You can add them yourself so they can be credited for this and other podcasts.

Episode Reviews

This episode hasn't been reviewed yet. You can add a review to show others what you thought.

This podcast, its content, and its artwork are not owned by, affiliated with, or endorsed by Podchaser.
Rate Episode

From The Podcast

Share This Episode

Recommendation sent

Join Podchaser to...

  • Rate podcasts and episodes
  • Follow podcasts and creators
  • Create podcast and episode lists
  • & much more

Episode Details

32m 35s
Episode Type

Episode Tags

Do you host or manage this podcast?
Claim and edit this page to your liking.