The Way ~ summary of Tao Te Ching

If it’s spoken, it’s not the Way.
(If you understand this, you can stop reading now.)
Truth cannot be spoken, cannot be labeled or named.
Thoughts and words create everything that is manifest.
Silence, constant life-force, allows a glimpse of the unmanifest.
All, manifest and unmanifest, comes from the same source.
It is a profound mystery.
And a gate to the essence of life.

A sage teaches by action, doing, example.
Words create illusion, opposites, duality.
Truth is simply one, unity.
A sage does not ask for anything,
only shares energy out of love for all.

One becomes a sage when acting naturally,
restraining desire and expressing compassion.
Learn to not want; use only the essentials.
It will eliminate greed, hatred and confusion.

Peace can be infused into anyone’s nature
and used without being exhausted.
How? By changing habits, observing,
removing un-peaceful acts, strengthening peaceful ones.
Through inspired intention and consistent diligent effort.
Truth is profound, yet invisible. It exists everywhere, every when.

Nature is perfect just the way it is.
It supplies everything that is needed, infinitely.

Using many words leads to exhaustion.
It is preferable to focus on the essence within,
awareness observing awareness.
It is inexhaustible, immortal, and the root of the universe.

Those that are not focused on the small self, ego,
are most accomplished, are most peaceful,
and can fulfill their true nature.
They are like water, still flowing water.
Still because of their virtue and compassion,
flowing because they act in harmony with nature.

Outside things are like illusions that cannot be possessed.
The pursuit of pleasure can derange one’s mind,
distort one’s behavior, and destroy one’s heart.
A wise person does not chase after outward pleasure,
a wise person chooses his True Nature.

“Peace” means returning to one’s original nature.
To know original nature, eternal law, is to be enlightened.
Kindness is action in line with original nature, harmony.
Action not in line with original nature invites misfortune.

Everyone possesses original nature.
In some, it has been obscured. It can be uncovered.
Once uncovered, fear, sorrow, worries, anger disappear.
True enlightenment is to reject nothing,
to be in acceptance of everything.
Face everything, avoid nothing.
Even the unpleasant is a teacher.

Too much knowledge leads to confusion.
Simplicity, spaciousness, leads to peace.
One returns to original pureness of a child
and simply delights in the experience of being alive.

One who is wise understands impermanence.
One who is wise understands cause and effect.
One who is wise understands balance.
A wise one avoids all extremes.

One who knows other people is wise.
One who knows himself is enlightened.

A sage loves everyone equally, unconditionally,
and harmonizes with everyone.
One who is aware of the essence of original nature
cannot be harmed by anything.

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