“Clubfoot-Hunchback-No-Lips talked to Duke Ling of Wei. Duke Ling was so delighted with him that when he saw normal people, their necks appeared thin and scraggy. Jug-Jar-Big-goiter talked to Duke Huan of Chi. Duke Huan was so delighted with him that when he saw normal people, he too thought their necks were thin and scraggy. So when goodness shines forth, the outward appearances are forgotten. We do not forget what ought to be forgotten, but forget what ought not be forgotten. This is forgetfulneess indeed!”
From Chuang Tsu Inner Chapters translated by Gia-fu Feng and Jane English
Wishing everyone a good 2016!
is like water
it does not compete.
(from Ursula le Guin rendition of the Tao Te Ching Chapter 8)
A conundrum in most spiritual, philosophical and religious traditions, is the question of whether being good for reward, is goodness.
If one’s good deeds and practices are said to lead to heaven, paradise, blessings, good health, release of happy hormones in the brain, enlightenment, good luck, good karma, fortunate reincarnations, becoming a respected ancestor and suchlike…….. are those deeds and practices not their own reward, both now and in the bigger scheme of things.
It (water) goes right
to the loathsome places,
and so finds the way.
Is it possible to be good? Is it possible to follow the Way . . . .