“… Returning to the source is serenity …” ~ Lao Tzu
The tide of troubling times, sadly, is not ebbing … as America deals with the ongoing social unrest triggered by deep seated racism … while COVID continues to wreak havoc with rising fatalities …
Yet in the midst of such troubles … such hatred and divisiveness … we can always remind ourselves (as we’ve said in all of our recent posts since COVID) … of qualities that bring us together: compassion, kindness, love, forgiveness … and more … and this remains true despite the contrarian voices echoing “the world is not built this way” or some other similar sentiments …
As His Holiness The Dalai Lama reminds us again and again:
“You must not hate those who do wrong or harmful things; but with compassion, you must do what you can to stop them — for they are harming themselves, as well as those who suffer from their actions.”
“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”
“Compassion is not religious business, it is human business, it is not luxury, it is essential for our own peace and mental stability, it is essential for human survival.”
So today we’ll look at some similar reminders through “poems of fulfillment” by Lao Tzu … poems that are about real peace …
But before that … let’s remind ourselves of what we can do in these troubling times …
“Heroes” always emerge in such times … and we have many “heroes” who continue to ensure our health and safety in the midst of the pandemic OR are dedicated to furthering justice & equality despite odds .. and Go Fund Me continues to support these “heroes” by organizing various pertinent campaigns. All of these campaigns are worthy of our attention … but for now we want to highlight THREE critical ones that we are supporting personally and also as Stillness Speaks (through donations):
We are all facing financial challenges but IF your situation allows you to donate and help then …
… please visit Frontline Responders Fund’s Go Fund Me page … and help deliver crucial supplies to these frontline responders …
… and/or visit America’s Food Fund Go Fund Me page and help feed the neighbors in need …
… and/or visit Justice and Equality Fund page … to further justice and equality.
And, we again, express our deepest gratitude to 1) the COVID-19 Frontline Responders (all the healthcare professionals – doctors, nurses, hospital/medical-services staff – firefighters, law enforcement, volunteers, and any/all the people involved in keeping the “system-at-large” functioning for ALL of us) … and 2) Go Fund Me for organizing campaigns to a) feed the needy and b) support organizations and people that are dedicated to addressing both urgent needs and systemic problems that undermine justice & equality.
THANK YOU – our lives would not be possible without your dedication.
And now … on to Lao Tzu’s “poems of fulfillment” …
Returning … to the Source
Empty your mind of all thoughts.
Let your heart be at peace.
Watch the turmoil of beings,
but contemplate their return.
Each separate being in the universe
returns to the common source.
Returning to the source is serenity.
If you don’t realize the source,
you stumble in confusion and sorrow.
When you realize where you come from,
you naturally become tolerant,
kindhearted as a grandmother,
dignified as a king.
Immersed in the wonder of the Tao,
you can deal with whatever life brings you,
and when death comes, you are ready.
Your Three Greatest Treasures …
Some say that my teaching is nonsense.
Others call it lofty but impractical.
But to those who have looked inside themselves,
this nonsense makes perfect sense.
And to those who put it into practice,
this loftiness has roots that go deep.
I have just three things to teach:
simplicity, patience, compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and in thoughts,
you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
you reconcile all beings in the world.
~ Lao Tzu
Both these poems are excerpted from The Enlightened Heart … in the Foreword, Stephen Mitchell, the editor says “… Most of what we call religious poetry is the poetry of longing: for God, for the mother’s face. But the poems in The Enlightened Heart are poems of fulfillment. They were written by the Secret, who has many aliases. Sitting or dancing, all these poets have found themselves inside the circle—some of them a step within the circumference, some far in, some at dead center. Looking out from the center, you can talk about the circumference. But really, there is no circumference. Everyone, everything, is joyfully included …”
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May the contemplation of these poems help you realize who you are … and …
May you be peaceful in your daily rhythm and interactions with others … and …
May you remain safe and healthy as you navigate these troubling times.