There is a Still Point at the center of life. It is a place that is empty of thought, worry, clutter, and suffering. It is this Still Point which allows all of life to circle and exist. When we are able to see our existence from this “still and empty” perspective, our anxiety and discontentment fades and we see ourselves and all things as they really are. It is a difficult place to find amidst the noise and confusion, but finding it and learning to spend time with it is as essential to life as is food, drink, and air.
5 thoughts on “Walking the Tao – Chapter 11”
Bill, I’m getting so much from your daily musings based on “Walking the Tao.” Thank you for sharing your peaceful wisdom. (I just spent an hour reviewing my ‘still point.’ Wow – what a revelation!
Hi, Bill. K C (“Casey”) Spivey here, writing from ABQ, NM. Which translation(s) of the Tao Te Ching most influenced you in your early decades of study?
Hi Casey, I forget my first exposure, but I came across the translation by Jane English and Gia Fu-Feng in the early 1970s and that one stuck with me. I also have enjoyed Stephen Mitchell’s version. More recently I have greatly appreciated a beautiful one by Ursula Le Guin. Technically the best one I know of is by Jonathan Star.
Thank you. My first exposure to this idea would be from a music background, listening to the sounds around me as if they were a composition written by the cosmos. I got this idea by the music and philosophy of John Cage, specifically his piece “4 minutes and 33 seconds” and his writings about the I Ching. Also, Pauline Oliveros’s practice of “deep listening.” It also reminds of Engaged Buddhism and the work of Thich Nhat Hanh, “how to sit.” And it also reminds me of some indigenous teachings about connecting to Mother Earth in every step. To me, your perspective on the Tao te Ching resonates with these and I find it comforting. Thanks again!