Holding onto Your Connection - Tao Te Ching 5

Holding onto Your Connection - Tao Te Ching 5

hold on tight

The fifth chapter of Tao Te Ching talks about holding onto the connections, and never give up! Why is it important to do so as a Taoist? If you have not read our earlier chapters, remember to do so from the first!  It doesn’t make much sense to jam into the middle of the book on your first read!  Check out chapter one, chapter two, chapter three, and chapter four of Tao Te Ching!

 

Tao Te Ching - Chapter 5

天地不仁,以萬物為芻狗;

The sky and ground do not feel, it treats everything like some hay dogs.

Why a hay dog and not a scarecrow or hay cat?  Because dogs are known for 忠心 – loyalty. Whatever that is loyal to the sky and ground, whoever gets the “water” pumps into them and makes them alive. The hay dog is actually referring to “grass” made dogs, and grass will revive when they get the water from the ground.  You can witness this every year when the grass grows back in spring! 

This means that the Tao as the sky, which provides resources to the ground. The ground is the absorbing party that takes from the Tao and feeds it to the people on the ground. That means, the lineage is the ground and it feeds the people in the lineage. Whoever is loyal and puts their heart to the lineage, they will be getting the water from the ground, which comes from the sky, and they will be revived, meaning that they will turn from not moving to moving.  Being able to move on, which means you will be charged up, you will be energized.

聖人不仁,以百姓為芻狗。

taoist heartThe people who connected to the Tao is also not humane, he treats everyone like the hay dogs too. Just like saying you go to a school, the teachers won’t feel pain for you and be nice to you. In fact, they will whip your butt to make you learn, which is the “real” good for you.

If you do put your heart into the learning and the system, and be loyal to it, you will benefit from it!

天地之間,其猶橐龠乎﹖

Between the sky and ground (people who are in the lineage), between the sky (the Tao) and the ground (the lineage), is just like the instruments that look like a wind-piano.

You pump air (energy) into them and press them here and there, then they will make sounds and go blossoms into life.  That means, all the disciples need the energy, the air, that feeds into them, and a “push” from the system to make them change. 

In a school, you receive the knowledge and teachings, which isn’t enough.  You need a push from the teachers to make you learn, such as setting deadlines for your homework, some exams, and tests that gives you pressure. With external forces that gives you pressure inside, you will grow and develop into a better you.

虛而不屈,動而愈出。多言數窮,不如守中。

Empties but not to bend, move and force it out, too much talking often leads to poor, why not just keep the connection (the middle = the connection between two things).

This passage continues about how the master teaches the disciples.  He treats the disciples as if they are those wind piano, so he presses it to empty its air out to make a sound but not to bend it and break it.  The more he moves and use you, the more he can get out of your potentials. Speaking too much in the lineage the way to go, the best way is to just keep going and sticking the connection and let the lineage, the master, and the Tao change and transform you into a new you.

keep your mouth shut

This passage teaches you how to be a good disciple, which is to be loyal, and shut the hell up in class, stop pretending a smartass, and let the teachers work on you, and let the teachers put pressure on you, squeeze your potentials out, and all you need to do is shut up, and keep yourself strongly blued to the path, like how people in the military trains and get tortured by their chief!  All you do is do what you are told to do, and you will become one of those elites, shut up, and keep going, don’t give up, don’t quit, stay together with the team.  As you can see, the whole thing is about not giving up and your job in the lineage is to learn to “stay and be strong”, don’t give up, and let the teacher and system do their thing on you to make you successful!  Accept the teachings!    We can’t say enough, but – get ordained to really start learning as we have said in chapter 1!