The TAO TE CHING for Modern Mentors and Learners

Chapter One

The Oneness that can be described is not the Oneness

Any concept that can be named is not that construct

The Nameless, is the origin of Heaven and Earth; The construct that is named is the mother of creation

Thus, the constant void enables one to observe the true essence. The constant being enables one to see the outward manifestations. These two come paired from the same origin.

But when the essence is manifested, It has a different name.

This same origin is called “The Profound Mystery.” As profound the mystery as It can be,

It is the Gate to the essence of all life.

Chapter Two

As soon as beauty is known by the world as beautiful, it becomes ugly. As soon as virtue is being known as something good, it becomes evil. Therefore being and non-being give birth to each other.

Difficult and easy accomplish each other. Long and short form each other.

High and low distinguish each other. Sound and tone harmonize each other

Before and after follow each other as a sequence.

Realizing this, the saint performs effortlessly according to the natural Way without personal desire, and practices the wordless teaching thru one’s deeds.

The saint inspires the vitality of all lives, without holding back. He nurtures all beings with no wish to take possession of.

He devotes all his energy but has no intention to hold on to the merit. When success is achieved, he seeks no recognition.

Because he does not claim for the credit, hence shall not lose it.

 

Chapter Three

By not adoring the worthy, people will not fall into dispute.

By not valuing the hard to get objects, people will not become robbers. By not seeing the desires of lust, one’s heart will not be confused.

Therefore the governing of the saint is to empty one’s mind, substantiate one’s virtue, weaken one’s worldly ambition and strengthen one’s essence.

He lets the people to be innocent of worldly knowledge and desire, and keeps the clever ones from making trouble with their wits.

Acts naturally without desire, then everything will be accomplished in its natural order

Chapter Four

Tao (The Way) can be infused into the nature and put to use without being exhausted. It is so deep and subtle like an abyss that is the origin of all things.

It is complete and perfect as a wholeness that can Round off sharp edges;

Resolve confusion; Harmonize with the glory;

Act in unity with the lowliness.

Tao is so profound and yet in invisible, It exists in everywhere and anywhere. I don not know whose Son It is, It existed before heaven and earth.

Chapter Five

Nature nurtures all things with the wholeness of complete virtue.

It shows the greatest and perfect kindness by giving life to let all things grow and accomplish them with the hastening of harvest.

Therefore, according to ancient custom, nature may seem unkind to regard all beings as a traditional straw dog for sacrifice.

And likewise with a saint, he may seem unkind to regard people as a traditional straw dog for sacrifice.

The space between heaven and earth is like the bellows, it appears empty yet it gives a supply that never fails;

The more it moves, the more it brings forth. Many words lead to exhaustion.

It is better to center on the true essence within.

Chapter Six

Spirit of the valley is immortal. It is called the mystic nature.

The gate of the mystic nature is regarded as the root of the universe. It is everlasting and cannot be consumed.

Chapter Seven

Heaven is everlasting and earth is enduring.

The reason that they are everlasting is because they do not exist for themselves. Hence, they are long lived.

Thus, although the saint puts himself last, finds himself in the lead. Although he is not self-concerned, finds himself accomplished.

It is because he is not focused on self-interests and hence can fulfill his true nature.

Chapter Eight

A person of great virtue is like the flowing water. Water benefits all things and contends not with them.

It puts itself in a place that no one wishes to be and thus is closest to Tao. A virtuous person is like water which adapts itself to the perfect place.

His mind is like the deep water that is calm and peaceful. His heart is kind like water that benefits all.

His words are sincere like the constant flow of water.

His governing is natural without desire which is like the softness of water that penetrates through hard rocks.

His work is of talent like the free flow of water.

His movement is of right timing like water that flows smoothly.

A virtuous person never forces his way and hence will not make faults.

Chapter Nine

Those who overly pride wealth is like the overflowing water which shall cause damages. It is better to restrain early.

Those who are not content with fame is like polishing the edge of a knife. The sharper it gets, the easier it is to break.

Wealth and treasures are but illusions that one cannot possess.

Those who are arrogant of their wealth and fame shall invite blame upon oneself.

The nature Tao teaches one to retreat after one’s success and not to hold on to the credit.

Chapter Ten

Can one unite the body and the spirit as one and embrace the “Oneness” without departing from the great Tao?

Can one achieve harmony with such gentleness by holding on to the true spirit within as if the innocence of an infant?

Can one free oneself from worldly knowledge and cleanse one’s mind, so that no faults shall be made?

Can a ruler love his people by governing with the natural Way without personal intention? Can the mystic gate to all life essence be opened or closed without the virtue of the mysterious nature?

Can one gain the insight of nature and become a wise person without the effort of action? The mysterious nature creates and nurtures all things without the desire to possess them. It performs with all efforts without claiming for credit.

It flourishes all beings without the intention to take control of. Such is the “Mystic Te” or “Mystic Virtue.”

Chapter Eleven

Thirty spokes unite around one hub to make a wheel.

It is the presence of the empty space that gives the function of a vehicle.

Clay is molded into a vessel. It is the empty space that gives the function of a vessel. Doors and windows are chisel out to make a room.

It is the empty space in the room that gives its function. Therefore, something substantial can be beneficial.

While the emptiness of void is what can be utilized.

Chapter Twelve

The five colors can blind one’s eyes. The five tones can deafen one’s ears.

The five flavors can dull one’s taste buds.

The pursuit of pleasures can derange one’s mind. The hard-to-get valuables can distort one’s behavior.

Therefore, a saint cultivates himself with virtues and does not indulge himself in sensory pleasures.

He rejects those outer temptations and chooses this True Nature.

Chapter Thirteen

Honor and disgrace can surprise a person.

The greatest distress lies in one’s physical body.

What does it men by “Honor and disgrace can surprise someone?” Honor is inferior, because one who wins the favor is afraid of losing it. And one who loses the favor is frightened with distress.

This is the significance of “Honor and disgrace can surprise someone.” What does it mean by “The greatest distress lies in one’s body?”

We have fear because we worry about our physical self. If one’s body does not exist, how can one has fear?

Therefore, he who values the world as much as he values himself, can be entrusted with the ruling of the world.

He who loves the world as much as he loves himself, can be entrusted with the guidance of the world.

Chapter Fourteen

What cannot be seen is called the invisible. What cannot be heard is called the inaudible.

What cannot be touched is called the intangible. These three cannot be examined and comprehended. And hence are mixed together as one.

This “Oneness” is not much brighter in the sky, as It is not much dimmer on earth. It is not more glorious in a saint as It is not more fainter in an ordinary person.

It is everlasting and cannot be named. It is the original void of “non-being.”

This “Oneness” is the Tao which is invisible, and formless. It may be regarded as vague and intangible.

When the Oneness Tao comes forward, Its front cannot be seen. When one tries to follow It, one cannot see Its rear.

By abiding with the original Tao, one can master the presence.

He who knows this “Origin,” shall know the teaching and principle of the Great Tao.

Chapter Fifteen

The ancient Tao cultivators were subtle and mysterious. They were of immeasurable profundity.

Because they were too subtle to be known, so reluctantly they were being described as follow: Cautious, as if crossing an icy river.

Hesitant, as if fearful of the surroundings. Reverent, like an honorable guest.

Dispersed, like winter ice began to melt in spring. Simple and sincere, like a genuine virgin.

Open-minded, like an empty valley. Harmonized, like the turbid water.

How can one turn the turbid water into clarity?

A person of Tao would maintain peace in order to achieve pureness of the mind. And therefore shall not be disturbed by the worldly desires.

After achieving pureness of the mind, how can one let it be everlasting?

A person of Tao would unify and harmonize himself with all beings which shall lead to eternity. Those who abide by this Tao will not indulge themselves in the desire of greed.

It is because of this humbleness that enables one to embrace the original “Oneness,” the Great Tao.

wallup.net

Chapter Sixteen

Human must achieve the ultimate void and maintain calmness with sincerity in order to observe the growth and flourish of all beings.

It is in this way that one can understand the law of nature.

All things and beings will eventually return to the original source. This is called “peace.”

“Peace” means returning to one’s original nature.

This original nature is the eternal law. To know the nature’s law is to be enlightened.

He who is ignorant of the nature’s law shall act recklessly, and thus will invite misfortune. To know the constant law of nature is to be generous.

Being generous, one is impartial. Being impartial, one is the sovereign. Sovereign is the nature itself.

Nature is Tao. Tao is everlasting.

When one’s physical body dies away, Tao still long endures.

Chapter Seventeen

In early ancient mankind, Tao has been in existence in one’s true nature. Men possess It without knowing.

One then acts with virtue and honor which is inferior to Tao. The less superior is to act with fear.

And the least superior is to act with disgrace.

This occurs because one does not have enough faith, and hence has no confidence.

The nature of Tao is distinguished by wordless teaching with the natural act of virtue without action.

As such, people would act effortlessly and harmonize with the Nature Tao.

Chapter Eighteen

When Great Tao declines, virtue of humanity and righteousness shall arise. When knowledge and intelligence appear, great hypocrisy shall arise.

When the six various family relationships are not in harmony, filial piety and compassion shall arise.

When a country is in chaos, the loyal officials shall appear.

Chapter Nineteen

Transcend the saint’s teaching and conceal one’s wisdom for potential use, shall benefit the people a hundred fold.

Extend kindness to its ultimate and then polish to refine one’s righteousness shall help the people or regain filial piety and compassion.

Employ one’s subtle true nature with exquisiteness and extend one’s personal benefit to share with others, shall eliminate robbers and thieves.

These three statements are apparent superficial and not sufficient to express the natural “Way” of the great Tao.

Hence, this is what people should do:

Return to their original true self and embrace the pure “Oneness.” Refrain selfness and diminish worldly desires.

Chapter Twenty

Enlightenment of the absolute Tao can free a person from worries and sorrow. How much is the difference between a respectful response and an angry response? How great is the difference between good and evil?

What people naturally fear, one should also fear.

One’s endless desire can result in negligence of the true nature of life.

People like to pursue after excitement as if they were ascending the terrace in spring and celebrate a sacrificial feast.

But I alone remain quiet and calm like an infant who is pure and innocent. And I alone appeared to be lost like one who has nowhere to go.

All people have a surplus, but I alone was simple and left out like a fool. People seemed bright and shrewd, while I seemed dull.

People like to dispute, while I alone remain quiet. I am calm and peaceful like the boundless ocean.

I am open-hearted and free like the wind blowing high above the sky without hindrance. Everyone thinks of themselves as capable and outstanding while I appeared unlearned.

I am the only one to be different from others for I value highly the Great Tao and joyfully act accordingly.

Chapter Twenty-one

A man of great virtue is one who follows the nature way of Tao. This Tao is vague and intangible.

Yet, in the vague and void, there is image, there is substance. Within the profound intangible, there is essence;

This essence is genuine. In It lies the great faith.

Since the beginning of the world, Tao has been in existence. Only through It that one can understand the origin of all beings. How do I know that this is the true essence?

It is through this natural Way.

Chapter Twenty-two

To yield is to preserve the whole.

To be misjudged is to be straightened. To be hollow is to be filled.

To be battered is to be renewed. To be in need is to possess.

To be abundant is to be confused.

Therefore, the saint embraces the “Oneness” as a standard for the world. The wise one is not prejudiced, hence he is enlightened.

The wise one is not self-opinioned, hence he is outstanding.

The wise one does not boast of himself, hence he shall receive the credit. The wise one does not praise his own deeds, hence can long endure.

Because the wise one does not conflict with others and therefore the world cannot contend against him.

It is not true as the ancients say, “To yield is to preserve the whole?” Thus the “Oneness” will be honored to him.

Chapter Twenty-three

Words that cannot be heard of are natural. A gale can not blow for the whole morning. A rainstorm cannot last for the whole day. What caused these effects?

Heaven and earth.

Even the actions of nature do not last long.

How much more can human’s behavior last when digressed from the natural Tao? Thus, one who follows the Great Tao,

When Tao is present, he will benefit the world with Tao. When Te is present, he will benefit the world with Te.

When Tao and Te are both lost, he identifies himself with the people and benefits them with the enlightenment of teaching.

One who identifies with Tao is glad to be with Tao. One who identifies with Te is glad to be with Te.

One who identifies with the loss of Tao and Te is glad to be with the lost.

If one does not have enough faith in “Tao,” how can he assist others to practice with faith?

Chapter Twenty-four

He who raises himself on tiptoe cannot stand firm. He who walks with strides cannot travel far.

He who is self-opinioned shall not be enlightened. He who is prejudiced shall not be recognized.

He who brags about himself shall not receive credit. He who is arrogant shall not make improvements.

In view of Tao, people who are self-centered are like the surplus food and redundant actions in everyday life.

All things disgust them.

Therefore a person of Tao will not conduct himself in such manner.

Chapter Twenty-five

Something is formed in the chaos, which existed before heaven and earth. It is quiet and profound.

It stands alone and alters not.

It revolves eternally without exhaustion. It is regarded as the Mother of all beings.

I do not know Its name, except to call It Tao.

When forced to give It a name, I would call It “the Great.” The Great is far-reaching.

Far-reaching is infinite.

Infinite is to return to the self-sufficient origin.

Therefore, Tao is great, heaven is great, earth is great, and so is the true-self. There are four greatness in the universe, and true-self is one of them.

Man models the Way of earth; Earth models the Way of heaven; Heaven models the Way of Tao; Tao models the Way of nature.

Chapter Twenty-six

The heavy is the fundamental of the light. Tranquility is the master of agitation.

Therefore, the saint always conducts himself with the essence of Tao and never departs from It. Although he is surrounded by the splendor of wealth, he remains to live a simple and ordinary life.

How can a ruler govern a nation without recklessness if he indulges in power and desire? He who acts recklessly shall lose the essence of Tao.

He who is agitated with lust and desires shall lose his true nature.

Chapter Twenty-seven

Good deeds leave no signs. Good words leave no flaws.

Good scheme needs no deliberate plans.

A good lock uses no bolts, yet it cannot be opened. A good knot uses no rope, yet it cannot be united.

Hence, a saint is always kind by saving other people and rejects no one.

He is always kind by saving all things and therefore nothing is being rejected. This is the true enlightenment.

Thus, a kind person is the teacher of the unkind. An unkind person is a lesson for the kind to learn.

He who does not value his teacher and dislikes the valuable lesson, although knowledgeable, is in fact greatly confused.

This is the fundamental essence.

Chapter Twenty-eight

To know the strong masculine principle, yet abide by the gentle female principle is like being the valley of the world where all rivers will flow into.

This is alike all virtue which will merge into the subtle Tao.

Being a valley of the world and not depart from the true nature, once can return to original pureness like an infant.

When one knows the white that is splendor, yet holds on to the black that is humble and lowly. He can be a standard of the world.

Being a standard of the world and not deviate from true nature, one is able to return to the void of Tao.

To know what is honor, yet abide by the dishonored, is like a valley of the world which is modest and humble.

Being the valley of the world makes possible the true virtue to be complete and sufficient. And hence can return to simplicity.

When the nature of simplicity is being manifested, it results into various vessels. And by applying the pure simplicity, a saint can master all things.

Hence, the Great Tao is a unified Oneness which cannot be separated apart.

Chapter Twenty-nine

He who wishes to take control of the world and acts upon it, I can see that he will not succeed.

For the world is a divine vessel,

It cannot be acted upon as one wish. He who acts on it fails.

He who holds on to it loses.

Therefore some things move forward while some follow behind. Some try to warm with exhaled air while some try to blow it cold. Some are strong while some are weak.

Some are successfully accomplished while some are declined and failed. Thus, the saint avoids all extremes, extravagance, and pride.

Chapter Thirty

One who assists the ruler with the principle of Tao, Will not use the force of arms to conquer the world. For such affairs will result in cause and effect.

Wherever the armies touch the land, it is turned into a wasteland of thorns and brambles. After a war is fought, bad years are sure to follow.

Therefore, one who follows the true nature will understand the principle of cause and effect and shall not rely upon the strength of force.

By knowing the effect, thus one will not brag. By knowing the effect, thus one will not boast.

By knowing the effect, thus one will not become arrogant.

By knowing the effect, although one has no choice, one still abides with the principle of cause and effect and does not resolve into force.

When things reach their prime, they start to age and decline.

This is the life that is diminishing and shall not reach the ultimate essence.

Chapter Thirty-one

Weapons of war are instruments of disaster. They are rejected by all beings.

Thus a person of Tao will not dwell upon them. According to the ancient custom of Ying and Yang,

A man of virtue values the left which is represented by Yang. And a man of war values the right which is represented by Ying.

Weapons are instruments of evil, and are not valued by a man of virtue. They are only used as the last resort to attain peach when all else have failed. If their use is necessary, it is best to employ with calmness and tranquility.

Even it if means victory, it is not something pleasant. Those who rejoice over the victory, enjoy killing.

He who delights in killing will not be favored by the people and shall not bring harmony to the world.

It is the ancient custom to favor happy events to the left as represented by yang. While on sad occasions, it is favored to the right as represented by Ying.

When this rite is applied in the army,

The lieutenant general takes the place of the left,

And the commander-in-chief takes the place of the right. This indicates that war is treated as if it is a funeral service;

For many lives had been killed and hence should be mourned with sorrow. Therefore, although a victory was won,

It is treated like funeral rite.

Chapter Thirty-two

The universal Tao has no name.

Although It appears in the plainest and may seem small, It is inferior to nothing.

If the kings and marquises can abide by the Great Tao, All beings shall act as guests and submit to them.

Heaven and earth will then be in harmony and shall descend sweet dew. People will not require command and orders,

Yet can treat each other equally with peace.

When Tao is manifested, names were given for the purpose of distinction.

But one must know how to attain the original pureness in order to avoid danger and disaster. Tao exists in the universe like the rivers and streams that lead to the ocean.

Chapter Thirty-three

One who knows other people is wise. One who knows himself is enlightened. To overcome others is strong.

To overcome oneself is the will of power. One who is contented is rich.

One who is determined has the strength of will. Those who embrace their true nature shall long live. He who is enlightened with the original nature,

Although dies physically, is eternally united with the everlasting Tao.

Chapter Thirty-four

The great Tao is ever present.

It can adjust Itself to everything.

All things live by It, and It does not deny them.

When Its work is accomplished, It does not claim possession.

It gives great love to nurture all things and all lives, but dominates not. The true void of Tao has no desires and may seem small.

Yet all things entrust their lives to It and It does not act as their master. This may be recognized as “the Great.”

Because a saint does not restrict himself with the greatness, Hence his greatness is accomplished.

Chapter Thirty-five

He who embraces the Great Tao shall be the guidance of the world.

By following him, the world will not be harmed and will be rendered with peace and harmony. Pleasures and delicacy can only attract passers-by to stay temporarily.

The teaching of Tao is plain without extraordinary appearances. It can not be seen,

It can not be heard,

It can not be depleted or exhausted.

Chapter Thirty-six

It desire shall conceal true self,

True self will manifest itself even more. If desire shall weaken true self,

True self will strengthen itself even more. If desire shall abandon true self,

True self will prosperous even more. If desire shall deprive true self,

True self will give even more.

This is known as the enlightened nature that is subtle yet profound. Gentleness overcomes strength, and the meek overcomes the strong.

Just as fish live in deep water and cannot survive after being taken out of the depths. And the powerful weapons of a country should not be displayed,

Just like one’s true nature cannot be revealed to be seen.

Chapter Thirty-seven

The everlasting Tao acts according to the natural Way. Therefore there is nothing that It will not accomplish.

If kings and the nobilities can abide by their true nature and follow the great Tao, All things shall be reformed naturally.

If during the process of reform, desires arouse.

I shall overcome with the simplicity of original nature. With the simplicity of true nature, there shall be no desire. Without desire, one’s original nature will be at peace.

And the world will naturally be in accord with the right Way.

Chapter Thirty-eight

A man of superior virtue is not conscious of being virtuous, hence is truly virtuous. A man of inferior virtue performs for the purpose of virtue, hence he is not virtuous. A man of superior virtue acts without action, and performs with his true nature.

A man of inferior virtue acts with intentional effort. A man of superior kindness acts a natural act.

A man of superior justice acts with righteousness and feelings for others.

A man of superior etiquette acts according to his true self, hence no one responds to him by moving away.

There, when Tai is lost, there is Te (virtue). When Te is lost, there is humanity.

When humanity is lost, there is justice. When justice is lost, there is etiquette.

Etiquette becomes prevalent when people fail to be sincere and honest. Hence, chaos begins.

A person of knowledge and self-opinion will be hindered from the enlightenment of Tao. Thus, this is the beginning of ignorance!

Therefore, one who cultivates himself with Tao,

Embraces the original nature and indulges not in sensual nature.

He abides by the fundamental Oneness and indulges not in sensory pleasures. Thus, abandon those desires and abide by this true essence of Tao.

Chapter Thirty-nine

In the beginning, there were those who attained the Oneness; Heaven, by attaining the Oneness became clear;

Earth, by attaining the Oneness became peaceful; Spirit, by attaining the Oneness became divine;

True nature is like an empty valley, and by attaining the Oneness, It became fully productive.

All things, by attaining the Oneness became alive.

Emperors and nobilities, by attaining Oneness can bring peace and prosperity to the world. All these are the results of achieving Oneness.

Heaven, without clarity would crack. Earth, without peace would quake.

Spirit, without divinity would be powerless.

True nature, without productivity would result in exhaustion of life. All things, without life essence would perish.

Emperors, without Oneness to exalt them to nobility, would stumble and fall. Thus, honor is based on humbleness.

The high builds its foundation upon the low.

Therefore, the kings and nobles call themselves “the solitude,” “the unworthy,” and “the virtueless.”

Is this not the reason why they base their honor upon humbleness?

Hence, the highly honored do not regard themselves as nobles and have no wish to be self- centered to think nobly of themselves as a piece of jade nor to think lowly of others as a lump of stone.

Chapter Forty

When Tao is in action, one’s worldly nature can be reversed to the true nature. Gentleness is the way of application of Tao.

All things in the world originate from the manifestation of Tao, The manifestation of Tao is the form of being,

Which originates from the non-being of the void, the Great Tao.

Chapter Forty-one

When a superior man heard of Tao, He cultivates himself diligently.

When an average man heard of Tao,

He is doubtful, vague and would give up halfway. When an inferior man heard of Tao,

He laughs and thinks of It as foolish. If Tao is not being laughed at,

It is not the Great Tao.

Thus, there is a traditional saying of,

One who is enlightened with Tao may appear foolish. He who is advancing in Tao may appear to withdraw.

Great Tao is plain and simple which can adapt to all circumstances, although It may seem uneven and rough.

A man of superior virtue is like an empty, receptive valley. A man of innocence may appear to be disgraced.

A man of great virtue appears to be deficient.

A man who practices Tao and actively achieves great merits may appear gentle and meek. A man who follows his true self may appear to be changeable.

Generosity has no rough angels.

Great achievement is time consuming, and is slow to complete. Great tone has no sound.

Great Tao is formless,

It is invisible and has no name. It benefits all and fulfills all.

Chapter Forty-two

Tao gives birth to one. One gives birth to two. Two gives birth to three.

Three gives birth to all things and all beings.

All beings bear the negative physical form which is represented by Ying, and embrace the positive true nature which is represented by Yang.

With the union of these two, they arrive at a state of harmony.

Men dislike to be “the solitude,” “the unworthy,” and “the virtueless,” Yet the Lords and nobles call themselves these names.

Hence, things are benefited by being humble, and damaged by profiting. What the ancients had taught, I shall also teach as such:

A man of violence who is in disharmony between Ying and Yang that is the physical body and true self, shall die of an unnatural death.

This is the essential of my teaching.

Chapter Forty-three

The softest of all things can overcome the hardest of all things.

Regardless of being or the non-being, they all have to return to the empty void to express their gentleness.

Thus, I have learned the benefits of natural actions without personal desires.

Very few can understand the value of wordless teaching and due act of natural Way.

Chapter Forty-four

Fame and life, which one is of intimacy? Life and wealth, which one is of importance?

To gain one but to lose the other, which is of harm?

Therefore, if one’s desires are great, one would result in exhaustion. Overstock shall result in heavy loss.

He who is contented will not suffer disgrace.

He who knows his true nature will not incur danger. It is in this Way that one can long endure.

Chapter Forty-five

Great achievement appears to be inadequate, yet its use is never exhausted. Great fullness appears to be void, yet its use is boundless.

Great honesty may seem to be accused of wrong doing. Great mastery appears to be clumsy.

Great eloquence may seem to be inarticulate. Movement can overcome chill.

Tranquility can overcome heat.

Peace and calmness is the Way to guide the world.

Chapter Forty-six

When the world lives in accord with Tao,

Fine walking horses can be retired form plowing the field. When the world fails to live in accord with Tao,

Even pregnant mares are used as war horses, And were forced to breed in the battlefield. The greatest crime is to have too much desire. The greatest disaster is not to find contentment.

The greatest mistake is to desire for endless possession. Hence, when one is gratified with self-contentment, True contentment can then long endure.

Chapter Forty-seven

Tao exists in one’s own true self.

It cannot be found outside of one’s true nature.

Hence, there is no need to leave the house to take journey in order to know the world. There is no need to look outside of the window to see the nature of Tao.

The further one departs from Tao, the less one will be able to know. Therefore a saint is wise to know without seeking for It.

He is wise to understand without seeing It.

He is wise to accomplish according to the Natural Way.

Chapter Forty-eight

In pursuing knowledge, one learns with intellect and desires. Therefore one’s knowledge is accumulated day after day.

In pursuing Tao, one is enlightened with the true nature and thus diminishes daily one’s worldly desires and knowledge.

The continuous depletion of one’s desires persists until one acts accordingly to the natural Way. By acting without personal intention enables one to accomplish all things.

Therefore, to rule over the world,

One must act naturally without personal desires.

If one pursues with extreme effort, one shall fail to rule the world.

Chapter Forty-nine

The saint has no set mind,

He regards the wish of the people as his own wish. He is kind to the kind, he is also kind to the unkind. This is the true virtue of kindness.

The saint trusts those who are trustworthy. He also trusts those who are not trustworthy. This is the true virtue of trust.

The saint conducts himself in the world by harmonizing with all beings to be at one. The worldly people thus look up to him attentively with their eyes and ears.

And the saint treats the people like a loving mother who loves her children unconditionally.

Chapter Fifty

Men enter this world with life and leave this world with death.

Those who work hard for living and longevity are comprised of one-third of the people. Those who are leading their life towards death are comprised of another one-third.

Those who live with indulgence in passion and desires shall harm their life and invite death. This is comprised of the final one-third of the people.

Why is this so?

It is because men are over-concerned with pleasures of life and hence exhaust themselves with hard work of desires of greed.

The wise one who knows how to nourish life with the Nature Tao,

When he travels, will not encounter fierce animals such as wild buffalos and tigers. When he is engaged in the battlefield, will not be harmed by the weapons.

The horns of the wild buffalos are powerless against him. The claws of the tigers are useless against him.

The weapons are of no avail towards him. Why is this so?

It is because the wise one follows the great Tao and cultivates himself accordingly. Hence, a man of Tao will not perish.

Chapter Fifty-one

Tao gives birth to all things. And Te (virtue) nurtures them. Matter shapes them.

The natural environment matures them. Therefore, all things abide by Tao and honor Te.

Although Tao deserves reverence and Te deserves honor, They are not demanded by decree,

But is a result of the Nature Way.

Hence, Tao gives life to all beings and Te nurtures, grows, fosters, develops, matures, supports, and protects them.

Tao gives birth to life and yet claims no possession. It gives support without holding on to the merit.

It matures them but does not take control of. This is called the Mystic Te.

Chapter Fifty-two

The beginning of the universe is Tao, It is the mother of all.

By knowing the Mother, we will know her creations.

By knowing the creation of all lives, one can then return to the origin and abide by the Mother. It is in this way that although the body dies, the spiritual nature will not perish.

To abide by the Mother of Tao is to keep guard on one’s sensory desire and shut the doors of temptation so as to prevent one from pursuing outwards.

Thus, by doing so one’s whole life may be preserved from exhaustion and pains.

However, if on the contrary one indulges oneself in the pleasure of desire and opens the door of temptation to pursue outwards,

Then one’s true nature will be lost and hence is beyond rescuing.

Those who are aware of the essence of the original nature are said to be enlightened. Those who abide by the gentleness of Tao are said to be strong.

Those who employ the glory of Tao,

And were able to return to the true nature, are ensured of no distress and is said to embrace the Nature Tao.

Chapter Fifty-three

If I were to have the very slight insight,

I would live in accordance with the Great Tao.

My only fear is, to go astray from Tao while spreading it.

Great Tao is smooth and plain, yet people prefer the devious bypaths. Hence, the government is corrupted with luxury and splendor.

The people were exhausted with labor and left the fields to be wasted and the granaries depleted. Under such practices, the officials would wear fine clothes,

Carry sharp swords and indulge themselves in good food and drinks. They crave with greed to possess great wealth.

Such is said to commit the crime of robbery and certainly is not the Way of Tao.

Chapter Fifty-four

One who cultivates himself with Tao, Firmly establishes his virtue.

He holds on faithfully to the Great Oneness, And is honored for generations ever after.

Cultivate oneself with the Oneness, Tao and the virtue is genuine. Cultivate a family with the Oneness, Tao and the virtue is in surplus.

Cultivate an entire village with the Oneness, Tao and the virtue is enduring. Cultivate a whole nation with the Oneness, Tao and the virtue is luxuriant. Cultivate the whole world with the Oneness, Tao and the virtue is universal. Hence, by cultivating oneself, thus gains insight into one’s true virtue.

By cultivating a family, thus gains insight into a loving family.

By cultivating a village, thus gains insight into a harmonious village.

By cultivating a nation, thus gains insight into the extensive benefits for the people.

By cultivating the whole world, thus gains insight into the universal peace that embrace all beings.

How do I know that the world is so? It is through this Way.

Chapter Fifty-five

One who preserves Te (virtue) in fullness, Is to be compared to an innocent infant.

Hence, no poisonous insects will sting him. No wild beasts will attack him.

No birds of prey will pounce upon him.

In governing one’s life, learn from an infant as such:

Its bones are soft, its tendons are tender, yet its grip is firm. No knowing the unity of male and female,

Yet the infant’s sexual organ is aroused.

This is because its life essence is pure and complete. Crying all day, yet the infant’s voice does not turn hoarse.

Such is the perfect harmony.

To know harmony is called “Everlasting.”

To know everlasting is called “Enlightenment.” To overprotect one’s life is called “Ill omen.”

To let one’s mind follow the emotional impulse is called “Compulsion.” When things reach their prime they start to age and decline.

This is the life that is diminishing, which shall not reach the ultimate essence.

Chapter Fifty-six

The wise does not speak. He who speaks is not wise.

Keep silent and close one’s mouth. Keep guard on one’s sensory organs. Round off one’s edges.

Untie the entangled. Harmonize with the glory. Mix with the lowliness.

This is called the Mystic Unity.

Because the wise is unified with all and has no distinction, Thus, one cannot get close to him,

Nor can one keep far away from him, One cannot benefit him,

Nor can one harm him, One cannot honor him, Nor can one disgrace him.

Therefore, he is honored by the whole world.

Chapter Fifty-seven

Govern a nation with the right principle, Fight a battle with the tactics of surprise,

Rule over the world with peace and natural effort. How do I know that this so?

By the following:

The more prohibitions that are imposed on people, The poorer the people become.

The more sharp weapons the people possess, The greater is the chaos in the country.

The more clever and crafty the people become, The more unusual affairs occur.

The more laws and regulations that exist, The more thieves and brigands appear.

Hence, the saint declares:

I act effortlessly with the Way of Tao,

Thus, people transform themselves naturally. I love tranquility and peach,

Thus, people naturally follow the right Way. I do not exhaust people with labor,

Thus, people naturally are wealthy. I have no personal desires,

Thus, people naturally are innocent and simple.

Chapter Fifty-eight

When the government is dull, People are simple and sincere.

When the government is complex and stringent, People are cunning and shall cause trouble.

Calamity is what blessings depend upon. In blessings there hides the calamity.

Who knows the ultimate end of the cycle of calamity and blessings? Is there no true principle that exists?

The normal may revert and become unusual. The good may revert and turn into evil.

Long indeed, man has been under such delusion.

Therefore, the saint abides by firm principle and does not depart from it. He is honest and not mean.

He is upright and not rue.

He is honored and not eminent.

Chapter Fifty-nine

In governing one’s life and serving the nature,

There is nothing better than to follow the Way of simplicity. Simplicity is to restrain one’s desires.

To restrain one’s desires is to practice the virtue of Nature Way. By practicing the virtue of Nature Way,

One is capable to accomplish anything. With the ability to accomplish anything, One can achieve the infinite realm.

By achieving the infinite realm,

One can then become a true leader of a nation.

To govern a nation with the Law of Nature is to be long enduring.

This is regarded as a profound and firm foundation of the everlasting Tao.

Chapter Sixty

Ruling a great nation is like frying small fish.

When they are over stirred, they will break into pieces. Guide the world with Tao,

Then the spiritual beings would lose their power.

It is in fact not that the spiritual beings had lost their power, But that their spiritual power cannot harm people,

But that the true nature of the saint has harmonized with the spiritual power and hence will cause no harm.

Since they both do not harm each other,

Therefore they will harmonize with the true virtue to embrace the Oneness, Tao.

Chapter Sixty-one

A great nation rules by placing itself in a lowly position like the rivers that flow into the low regions of ocean.

Hence, people will naturally be faithful to their country.

Mother nature always stays calm and quiet to overcome the unrest. It takes the lowly position to be in peace.

Thus, if a great nation can lower itself to deal with a smaller nation, Then it shall win the heart of the people.

And the smaller nation will willingly merge with the great nation. And if the smaller nation can lower itself to deal with the great nation,

Then it shall win the trust and be accommodated as a part of the great nation. Therefore, be it to take a lowly position to win over or to take a lowly position to be accommodated;

The great nation only wishes to unite and shelter all the people,

While the small nation only wishes to be a part of the nation to serve it. Now that both are granted with what they wish for,

It is only natural for the “Great” to put itself in a lowly position.

Chapter Sixty-two

Tao is the wonder of all creations.

It is a treasure for those who are kind.

It can also protect those who are not kind. Words of Tao can benefit all people.

Its action can guide people to follow the right Way.

Those who have gone astray, the all-forgiving Tao will not abandon them.

Therefore, it is better to embrace this precious Tao than to be crowned as kings or appointed as ministers or to possess wealth and fine horses.

So why did the ancients value and honor this Tao?

It is because “Those who seek will attain, those who offended will be forgiven.”

Thus, It is the greatest honor in the world.

Chapter Sixty-three

Act without personal desire. Manage without intentional concern. Taste without desire of the flavor.

Hold the same regard for big or small, abundant or little and reward the unkind with kindness. Plan for the difficult while it is easy.

Act upon the great from the beginning of the minute.

All difficult affairs must be taken care of when they are easy.

All great accomplishments must be performed from the small tasks. Hence, a saint does not strive to do something great.

And as a result he is able to accomplish the great.

He who makes promises easily seldom keeps his words.

He who constantly regards things as easy shall result in difficulty.

Therefore, the saint is aware of the difficulties ahead and hence is cautious in managing affairs while they are sill easy and small to prevent resulting into problems.

Chapter Sixty-four

It is easy to preserve when things are stable.

It is easy to plan ahead when things have no yet occurred. If one waits until the affair has begun,

Then the situation is as brittle as ice that easily cracks and is fragile that easily shatters. Take actions before things occur.

Manage before things get out of order. A huge tree grows from a tiny sprout;

A nine-story high terrace is built from heaps of earth. A journey of thousand miles begins from the first step. He who acts with desire shall fail.

He who tries to possess shall lose.

Therefore, the saint acts without effort and so he does not fail. He is not eager to possess and so he does not lose.

Most people fail when they are near completion.

If one can be cautious from beginning to end, then he will not fail. Thus a saint pursues what people do not pursue.

He does not value the hard-to-get objects.

He learns what people do not learn and avoids the faults in order to restore his true nature.

He follows the course of nature to benefit all things and dares not go astray from the right Way, Tao.

Chapter Sixty-five

The ancient Tao cultivators,

Did not lead people to acquire knowledge to be tricky,

But to guide them to restore their simplicity and innocence.

The reason people are difficult to be governed is because they are clever and witty. Therefore, he who rules a nation with tactics and wits shall do harm to the country. He who does not rule with such is the nation’s blessing.

To know these two principles is to know the rule of nature.

To know the rule of nature is called Mystic Te (Mystic Virtue). Mystic Te is profound and far-reaching.

It can guide all things to return to their original nature, And thus great harmony can be achieved.

Chapter Sixty-six

The reason that river and ocean can be the Lords of all valley is because they are located in the lowly position.

Therefore, the saint humbles himself to serve all people.

And he leads the people by putting himself last for the sake of the people’s welfare. Thus, although he rules above the people,

The people do not feel him as a burden. Although he leads in front of the people, The people do not feel him as a threat.

Hence, the world supports him with no objection. This is because he does not contend,

Therefore, he is above all competition.

Chapter Sixty-seven

The whole world says the Tao that I have attained is so great that It seems unreal. Because It is indeed so great, thus It seemed unreal.

If It were real, It would have been insignificantly small. I have Three Treasures that I hold and guard.

The first is Kindness. The second is Simplicity. The third is Humbleness.

With Kindness, one can be courageous. With Simplicity, one can be generous.

With Humbleness, one can be the lead to provide guidance. Now, if one abandons kindness and yet tries to be courageous, If one abandons simplicity and yet tries to be generous.

If one abandons humbleness and yet tries to lead as guidance, He is doomed to perish.

One who fights a battle with kindness shall win.

One who keeps guard with kindness shall secure.

Even the great nature shall save him and protect him with kindness.

Chapter Sixty-eight

A faithful Tao cultivator does not use force. A good warrior does not lose his temper.

A great conqueror does not challenge others. A good leader is humble.

This is called the virtue of peace with no contention.

This is also regarded as competence to make good use of the effort of people. Such is regarded as achieving harmony with nature.

Such is the perfect Oneness of true nature.

Chapter Sixty-nine

In warfare, there is a saying of such strategy:

I would rather take a defensive position than to make an initial offensive move. I would rather withdraw a foot than to march forward one inch.

Such is called to advance without advancement; To defeat without arm force;

To fight as if there were no enemy;

To carry weapons as if there were no weapons and thus no need for the use of weapons. There is no greater disaster than to underestimate the enemy.

To do so may cost one to lose his valuable life. Therefore, when two armies engage in a battle, The party that feels the sorrow of killing shall win.

Chapter Seventy

My words of Tao is easy to understand and to practice. However, the world can neither understand nor practice them. In my words of Tao, there is the subtle truth.

In my deeds, there is the Way of Tao. Because people do not understand these, Therefore they do not understand me.

Those who know me are few.

Hence, the essence of Tao appears to be more honorable and precious. Thus, a saint may dress in ordinary coarse clothing,

Yet has a heart of gem with the true essence within.

Chapter Seventy-one

One who knows what people do not know, Is a person of enlightenment.

One who pretends to know what he is ignorant of, is at fault.

He who is aware of what he does not know, shall not be at fault.

Therefore, a saint is flawless for he is aware of what he truly knows and what he knows not, hence he is flawless.

Chapter Seventy-two

When people do not respect the authority, There shall be great misfortune.

Do not interfere with the people’s livelihood. Do not despise their living.

Because there is no detest against the people,

Therefore the people do not detest against the authority. The saint realizes his true nature and hence

Does not distinguish himself.

He has a sense of self-respect and thus does not exalt himself. Therefore, he rejects those that are self-distinguished and self-exalted. And abides by these that are self-awareness and self-respect.

Chapter Seventy-three

He who is brave in being daring, acts recklessly and shall be killed. He who is brave but acts cautiously and kindly shall live.

Of these two, one is beneficial while the other is harmful. What nature wishes, who may know what the reasons are?

Thus, the saint is aware of the subtlety and profoundness of the Nature’s Way, So he takes great caution in practicing It.

The Tao of Nature,

Does not contend, yet easily wins. Does not speak, yet always responds. Does not summon, yet all things gather. Does not contemplate as if at ease,

Yet all plans were devised perfectly.

The Law of Nature is like a giant web,

Although sparsely meshed, nothing can slip through.

Chapter Seventy-four

When people do not fear death,

There is no use trying to threaten them with death.

If people value their lives, and those who break the law were being executed, Then who would dare to commit criminal act?

The life and death of all beings are handled by the executioner of Nature. Those who substitute the nature executioner to kill,

Is like replacing the master carpenter to chop the wood. One who substitutes the master carpenter to chop the wood, Rarely does not hurt his hands.

Chapter Seventy-five

People starved because the ruler taxed too heavily. People are difficult to be ruled,

Because the ruler governs with personal desire and establishes too many laws to confuse the people.

Therefore the people are difficult to be ruled. People take death lightly,

Because the ruler pursues after luxurious life and depletes the people. Therefore the people take death lightly.

One who does not value his life with self-desire, truly cherishes his life.

Chapter Seventy-six

When a man is alive, he is soft and supple. When he dies, the body becomes hard and stiff. When a plant is alive, it is soft and flexible.

When it is dead, it becomes dry and brittle. Therefore, hard and rigid shall lead to death. Soft and gentle shall lead to life.

Thus, a strong army with rigid force shall not win. A thick and big tree will be cut down for its use. The big and strong will take an inferior position. The soft and gentle will take superior position.

Chapter Seventy-seven

The Tao of Nature is like stretching a bow.

When the stretch is too high, it needs to be pressed down. When the stretch is too low, it needs to be raised high.

The excess will be reduced.

The deficient will be replenished.

The Tao of Nature is to reduce the excessive and to replenish the insufficient. The Tao of man, however is otherwise.

It takes from the needy to serve those who already have a surplus. Who can spare one’s surplus to serve the world?

A person of Tao.

Thus, a saint acts without holding on to the achievements. He accomplishes but does not claim for credit.

He has no desire to distinguish himself.

Chapter Seventy-eight

There is nothing in this world that is softer and meeker than water. Even those that can conquer the strong and hard,

Are still not superior than water. Nothing can substitute it.

Hence, what is soft can overcome the strong. What is gentle can overcome the strength.

This is known by the world.

However, people cannot put it into practice. Therefore, the saint said as follow:

He who can take the disgrace of a nation, Is said to be the master of the nation.

He who can bear the misfortune of a nation, Is said to be the ruler of the world.

Truthful words may seem to be the reverse of worldly practices.

Chapter Seventy-nine

When a great resentment has resulted,

Even if one tries to reconcile and make peace, There is bound to leave some remaining resentment.

Thus, how can this be considered as a good settlement?

Therefore, a saint cultivates himself with introspection and self-discipline without blaming others for faults.

This is like the ancient custom which acts by holding on to the left part of the tally as a debtor that demands nothing from others.

Hence, a person of virtue acts as if he were the debtor.

And a person without virtue acts as if he were the creditor that demands only from others. The Tao of Nature is impersonal which makes no exception to anyone.

It always assists those that are kind and virtuous.

Chapter Eighty

An ideal nation is small and with few people.

Although there are abundant weapons, there is no need for the use.

Let the people cherish their life and not pursue after fame and wealth, So that they have no intention to move to faraway places.

Although there are boats and carriages, no one will ride them.

Although there are weapons and armors, there is no occasion to display them.

Let the people return to the ancient simple life where knotting ropes were used to record every event.

People would then enjoy the simple food, simple clothing, and be contented with a simple life. And they shall live happily with the traditional customs.

Neighbors of the nations overlook one another in the near distance. The barks of dogs and crowing of cocks can be heard.

Yet people are so contented that they enjoy their life without ever visiting each other.

Chapter Eighty-one

Words of truth are not pleasing. Pleasing words are not truthful. The wise one does not argue.

He who argues is not wise.

A wise man of Tao knows the subtle truth, And may not be learned.

A learned person is knowledgeable but may not know the subtle truth of Tao. A saint does not possess and accumulate surplus for personal desire.

The more he helps others, the richer his life becomes. The more he gives to others, the more he gets in return. The Tao of Nature benefits and does not harm.

The Way of a saint is to act naturally without contention.

TRANSCENDENCE AS THE APOTHEOSIS OF SELF-ACTUALIZATION

In models of self-actualization, the self or the ego goes through several challenges or soul pathways, encountering distinctive barriers, obstacles and pitfalls along the way. But then, in a miraculous journey of self-realization, the self soon discovers avenues of creative growth and achieves a stable phase of self-actualization. Let us see how the ego transforms into a self-actualized Self.

THE FIRST PATH. It is the level where archetypal energy is trying to understand itself, its capabilities and potentialities and its ability to affect its environment. We must understand that this energy pattern represents the lowest stage in the development of the self.  Therefore, it is the stage where ego is at its maximum. The energy pattern is totally egocentric and defines its personal narratives and environmental dynamics through the perspective of its ego mostly. This is the stage of maximum self-reference. Consequently, there is a tendency for this developmental phase to be self-indulgent. On the other hand, this avatar of thermodynamic archetypal intelligence has maximum access to the energy population set at its disposal. Thus, he is perfect for arenas where he/she can demonstrate this thermodynamic access optimally. He/she can finds the perfect avenues in sports, the martial arts, and other competitive arenas. This archetype thrives in competition.

THE SECOND PATH. It is the level where the energy has learned to encase itself successfully in various case sheaths or material vehicles of expression. This particular developmental phase has its advantages. The personality is able to interact more and more with its ecologies, environments and habitats. However, it may also come to exalt the vehicles of expression themselves and give them operational control of its existential narrative. Much has been written about the mind-body dichotomy throughout the ages. The important thing to remember is that the mind and the body are not enemies, have never been enemies. They can cooperate with each in a mutual dance of beneficence and harmony. But both must remember their “existential stations.” The mind is the avatar of levity; the body is the avatar of gravity. And their conversation defines “life” in the material universe. This conversation is, and has always been, a crucial learning paradigm in the maturation of an ego towards a stable sense of self.

THE THIRD PATH. This is the developmental phase which is an information processor par excellence. This energy pattern assimilates, absorbs, processes, plays with, regurgitates and expresses all forms of information constructs. The speed of information processing is also a hallmark of this archetype. This is the reason why so many personalities with this archetype are charming, witty, smart and intelligent. They absorb information at a prodigious rate. But since most information will be in the translation format of the material universe, this personality is known to be very practical. His focus still remains at an egocentric level, a legacy of the previous developmental phases. To travel is also to assimilate new information, and so this personality loves to travel in a myriad of ways and tends to sample and explore new dimensions of experience every now and then. The absence of new information would be tantamount to death for this developmental pattern. This developmental phase can thus be understood as an avatar of novelty. Novelty is the seeking of new experiences, new paradigms and new narratives.

THE FOURTH PATH.  In this developmental phase, the energy pattern learns to incubate all that it knows, to access realms beyond those of the conscious processing level, in order to give birth to something new later on. In this developmental phase, we learn that growth can also occur in phases of sublimation and incubation. The energy of sublimation is a different order of information processing. It occurs in dimensions of mystery in contrast to the previous stages where growth is palpable and instantly measureable. In order for incubation to truly succeed, all of the necessary materials for growth must be present, and in the right amounts and frequencies, and in the most appropriate contexts and environments. In the ancient world, thinkers, sages and philosophers revered the virtue of Temperance. It tells us the lesson that all elements must be present in the right conglomeration, in order for self-organization to occur and give rise to new narratives and new growth patterns. This can be a stage of death or transformation, as well as a stage of rebirth.

THE FIFTH PATH. The energies and potentialities accumulated in the previous developmental stages are transmuted, incubated and are born anew into a new form. This form has a self-organization and singularity potential that is different from the previous stages. Thus, it can be interpreted as an emergent archetype. This also imparts to us the realization that the progression from the first four stages is a series of permutations of the original creative inspiration that occurred with the birth of the first archetype. In this developmental phase, the emergent mind has enough strength to begin to battle with the propensities of its environmental expressions. This personality realizes the strength that comes from the right harnessing of inner potential. There are many ways to illustrate this fractal strength. One is to radiate it to its environment, and that is why this   archetype is creative, artistic and dramatic. He is well suited to those realms where he can radiate his powers, whether for good or ill. Another point to understand about this developmental phase is that it is the period where the mind is beginning to realize the necessity of attaining a successful negotiation of the mind-body dichotomy. True strength comes from within, and is radiated outwards as a manifestation of its natural potency.

THE SIXTH PATH. The excellence of the previous stage is taken further and imposed not only on the self only but on its ability to manage the immediate necessities of life in the material universe. This developmental phase also represents a culmination of the strengths of the previous stages. Energy is realized by the mind, harnessed for the development of the personality in ways that promote growth. This energy produces a mind that becomes increasingly aware of itself, and thus develops the parameters of individual consciousness. Being increasingly aware, the personality then continues to seek those avenues which lead to dynamic growth, prosperity, stability and even more novels ways to experience consciousness. In addition, this energy pattern is known for its penchant for precision, exactitude and accuracy, which are gifts of its isomorphic intelligence.

THE SEVENTH PATH. The appreciation of symmetry is at its highest in this developmental phase. This archetypal phases attempts to balance polarities in its environment by emphasizing the symmetrical and harmonious operations between two interacting pairs of abstractions, modalities, personalities or collectives. This appreciation flies into the realms of art, music, dance and similar right brain and holistic perspectives. This personality, being appreciative of these themes, frequently applies them in his life. The charm, intelligence, culture and elegance of this archetype, therefore, all proceed from this paradigm. This intelligence archetype also governs the natural exchange that occurs between actual processes and tangible objects of perceived equivalent value. When one is exchanged for the other, it is assumed that both follow the principle of equivalence, thus giving rise to commerce. All areas where harmony is the paramount principle are governed by this developmental phase.

THE EIGHT PATH. The power of transmutation and transformation reaches its greatest apex in this developmental phase. Recalling the lessons of previous developmental phases, this archetypal phase attempts to expand and deepen this experience by continuous awareness, management and alchemical transformations of its biological as well as inorganic resources. First, it is constantly aware of its biological and inorganic potentialities, both in its own self and in its interactions with its environment. Secondly, being hyper-aware of this microcosm of potentiality, it recognizes the possibilities of power plays, tactics and strategies as ways of dynamically interacting with its environmental parameters. The extreme form of this personality therefore engages in power struggles of various kinds as a way to test its own existential fitness and as a vector to acquire and maintain additional resources. Probing into the mysteries of the universe, this archetypal personality therefore has a predilection to explore esoteric realms of thought. The personality dynamic expressed by this phase is at once an adept, a warrior, a lover and a progenitor.

THE NINTH PATH. In this archetypal energy phase, the focus is on the integration, synthesis and evaluation of various kinds of data to give rise to models, hypothesis and theories which can explain these data sets comprehensively. This personality loves to integrate various kinds of data and also loves to theorize about possibilities and applications of those integrations. He is therefore the quintessential theorist, philosopher and mentor. Being extremely versatile, and combined with pronounced eloquence, this archetype is the perfect mentor. Thus, while this personality is growing up, it is imperative that he explores various fields of knowledge to get a feel of each domain. He will most likely have aptitude in more than one area of knowledge. As he is growing up, he must learn to coordinate this knowledge set into an integrated whole. This archetypal personality is a disciple of interdisciplinary thought. When mature, he will synthesize his various learning paradigms into comprehensive theories and models which he can convey to the next generation in whatever format he deems appropriate. Consequently, he is frequently active in writing, lecturing, mentoring and related stuff. Thus, this intelligence perspective is the Seeker personified.

THE TENTH PATH. In this developmental phase, the ego has accumulated many different experiences as he traveled through various parameters and narratives. Concomitant with this voyage is the assimilation and integration into its being of the various gifts obtained in these various planes of experience. This intelligence archetype is fortunate to learn from the past. And to imbibe the gifts of experience from previous eras. This intelligence archetype now assembles these various weapons and creates an organizational masterpiece that is rooted in the planes of matter. He tries to elevate the manipulation of matter into an art form. He combines the left-brain power of science and the right-brain power of art to configure sociological frameworks that can withstand the forces of fate and time. He is trying to build a citadel. He is trying to build a citadel that will stand as an everlasting memorial to his determination, practicality, prudence, business acumen, organizational leadership skills and vision statement. As an administrator, this energy pattern represents the peak of archetypal power management. What differentiates it from the previous phase is that this intelligence archetype is willing to spend time and energy on his project building efforts. He knows that in order for large social ventures to succeed, time itself must be coaxed, romanced and be used as a catalyst. He is the archetypal civilization builder.

THE PENULTIMATE PATH. In this developmental phase, the individual archetypal patterns begin to sense the presence and influence of non-material planes of existence. It begins as a series of stimulating gifts from the realms of creative serendipity. These gifts may come in random packages. The ability of the soul to sense the presence of serendipity and associated higher realms is proportional to the work he applies in making his mind and whole being a conduit to this creative process. Thus, this energy phase is really the stage where the soul is becoming extremely proficient in “listening” to the input of other non-material realms of thought. As an iconoclast, this personality is sensitive to ultra-advanced modes of thought but he has the common sense not to disturb group social processes just to promote his own individuality. Certainly this balance is prominent in the mature personalities exemplifying this archetype. It is either that these types have been denied the individual expression of their uniqueness and creativity or they are unable to express it due to personal stress of some kind. On the positive side, since this developmental phases has high holographic intelligence, the personalities expressing this archetype are very tolerant of other individuals, their eccentricities and peculiarities.

THE FINAL PATH. The final path in self-actualization narratives is the culmination as well as the synthesis of various developmental phases. As the summation and culmination of the archetypal energies, this archetypal pattern can, in theory, access and utilize the gifts, strengths and potentialities of all the previous developmental phases. In the same manner, he/she can express the negative qualities as well. This developmental phase has a great potential for spiritual growth because he is attuned into higher spheres of existence. Whereas the previous archetypal phase is a vessel where the higher dimensions can pour their gifts, this final developmental phase actually has experiences where he/she lives part of his existence in the pleasures of the higher dimensions. The personality expressing this developmental phase signifies the capacity of the soul to access larger and larger cycles of experience beyond the material universe itself. In practical terms, it is expressed in various ways. One is through the living harmonies of art, music, dance and beauty. Another is through the ability to care for others, especially underprivileged classes of society as well as persons with disabilities. Another is the capacity to enjoy and employ altruistic service even in habitats of seclusion, like monastic communities,  hermitages and hospitals. The personality expressing this developmental phase enjoys solitude because it allows the soul respite from the “noise” of the material plane. Thus, he/she is most likely to enjoy a life of seclusion, meditation and loving service to all mankind. Transcendence is achieved as a manifestation of the achievement and maintenance of dynamic growth.

 

 

The Filipino Learner in the 21st Century

With the beginning of the school year, it is time to reflect on the fundamental strategies that pupils, students, and learners from all walks of life can employ in order to improve their academic performance at any level.

Discover your learning style. It is imperative for any learner to discover his or her learning style, the one that is the primary preference of his or her mental nature. Try to discover your learning style and your mental skills and academic performance will get a boost. Do you enjoy looking at pictures and visual diagrams? Do you like to watch informative programs in the television? Do you doodle in your notebook? Does the presentation of topics in school with visual art make you appreciate the lesson more? Then you are a visual learner. Do you like to listen to music when you study your lessons? Are you the type who would benefit from tape recording important lessons and playing them back during exam preparation time? Are you fascinated with sound? Can you close your eyes during class and absorb more of the lesson as the distractions are eliminated? Then you are an aural learner. There are other learning styles, I will expound more in the future. The idea is that you must discover your preferential learning style and use it to the optimum.

Create a personalized learning environment.  Try to create a learning environment at your home. As much as possible, try to obtain your own study table, no matter how simple it is. Organize your notebooks and textbooks. Create posters that inspire you to study. Always schedule your day and week so that you can spend time studying and still perform your household chores. Creating a study space impresses in your subconscious the fact that learning is fun and you have deliberately created an environment that facilitates learning. Set learning goals for yourself. Aim high!

Develop a love for books. This is one of the most critical habits that a person can develop which will go a long way to improve his learning skills. For parents, try to inspire and encourage your children to love reading books. Try to organize your budget to accommodate a certain amount to buy informative and educational books. Invest in the classics. Create a family library. And most importantly, try to be a model for your kids. If children see that their parents love to read, then they will also be inspired to love books. For pupils and students of all ages, read widely and deeply. Always refresh your mind with knowledge by reading general information books. You might even be selected to participate in quiz bees and mental contests. Thus, all kinds of informative books are important. Expand your range always by reading even those books that are not recommended by your teachers and instructors. Start collecting books at a young age and soon, you will be surprised at the quality of your library as you grow older. Read, read and read!

            Understand the fundamental skills. The fundamental skills that allow you to access other higher-order mental skills are the essential subjects of the languages and mathematics. It is very important for young learners to master these two essential skills. All the subjects in the curriculum are important but if you ask me the two most important subjects, then it is English and Mathematics. The ability to comprehend successfully all the other subject in the curriculum is predicated on a good background of these two skills. All the aptitude and licensing examinations implicitly test language and numerical comprehension skills. It is the degree of understanding of these two fundamental subject areas which is directly proportional to academic intelligence. So, learners of all ages, never forget to master linguistic and mathematical skills. In addition, computer literacy must be prioritized also.

Experiment with yourself. In order to improve your study skills, then you must experiment with yourself. How? You must attempt to analyze yourself more as a learner. Ask yourself: what are your strengths and weaknesses? Do you prefer social science subjects to mathematical subjects? If yes, then devote more time to algebra and geometry in order to redress the balance. As a college student, do you excel in the theoretical aspect of your science subjects but struggle in the laboratory exams? Then make an effort to master more of the laboratory lessons. Do you hate memorizing but some of your teachers seem to test that area most often in their exams? Then make an effort to develop memory codes and tools that will help you strengthen your memory. Analyze also your temporal preferences. Do you like to study in the morning, afternoon or nighttime? Then adjust your personal and social schedule to accommodate your temporal preference. Once in a while, do something out of the ordinary which may allow you to discover certain tools that will help you study. How? Go to a park, perhaps your psyche needs it to study. Or perhaps you like to study in the canteen, with the aroma of food and drinks enriching your consciousness. Perhaps listening to some form of music will catalyze your learning curve. Then by all means listen to musical pieces. Classical music, nature symphonies, meditation music, love songs and pop have been proved by various researchers to be the most beneficial in inducing a relaxed mental state. Experiment with various ways to enhance your learning curve.

Join a study group. If you feel that joining a study group will inspire to ascend newer and higher heights of mental achievements, then by all means do so. Join a study group or create one. Befriend the academic achievers in your various classes. This will enrich your network of friends. Besides, the best academic performer in your class may give you some additional tips on how to hurdle difficult topics. Choose your friends with care though. Social learning is fun, make the most out of it.

Apply your learning. One of the best ways to integrate what you have learned into your consciousness is to apply it in your daily life. If you have a store, then you can apply the mathematical lessons you learned in school. Economics teaches you how to budget your money. Social science will inculcate in you concepts you can use in your circle of friends. Mastery of languages will come in handy in foreign lands. These are just some of the ways to translate learning in school into relevant situations in daily life. These are just some of the ways to enhance your study habits. I will share more in the future.

I would like to thank the ownership, publishers and editorial staff of our beloved regional newspaper, the NORTHERN POST, in Tuguegarao City, Cagayan, Philippines, for allowing me to present interesting educational concepts in this media format. May this be a partnership of the ages. Thank you so much, Mabuhay, and more power. God bless this newspaper.

 

Classroom Psychology in Art Appreciation

Prologue

You are a student engaged in any of the clinical sciences or public health courses or courses in the allied health fields. You are forced to take an Art Appreciation class. You hate the subject but needless to say, you need to study it because it is part of your curriculum. A failing grade is always a failing grade, whether your subject is a major one or a minor one. You sit in class, bored to death, and would rather open your books in your clinical science subjects. You ignore your teacher and your classroom environment. You anxiously wait for your next clinical science subject.

 

Introduction

Scenarios like these are repeated throughout the world. Students in the clinical and health sciences and allied health fields like laboratory medical science, public health, respiratory therapy and even domains from nursing to clinical psychology to health statistics are challenged with the thought of enrolling in an Art Appreciation subject or its equivalent in the Humanities. It is challenging because (1) It reduces the time spent to study the major subjects in the clinical sciences and (2) It proves an additional burden of yet another subject that may not be that necessary anymore.

But are Art Appreciation classes or classes in the Humanities no longer relevant in the complex scientific world of the 21st century? This essay would like to explore this question and related paradigms.

 

Discussion

All the natural and clinical sciences build the sequential, linear cognitive map of the learner. The emphasis is on structure, sequence, order, accuracy and precision. Quantitative measurement is the key to problem solving as well as the mastery of the inherent hierarchies, procedures, protocols and heuristics that are involved in the respective scientific domains. The learner or student is trained vigorously in the problem solving protocols that have been the hallmark of the natural and clinical sciences since the ascendancy of the scientific method.

On the other hand, Art with its perplexing array of interpretations, movements, viewpoints, paradigms, perspectives and sensibilities may prove to be a peculiar challenge to the cognitive universe of a clinical student. In fact, he/she may come to question the veracity of the artistic fields themselves, and their actual relevance to his clinical science curriculum. The popular idea that “science is objective and art is subjective” may come to the fore here. And it may prove to be a particular thorn in a bed of roses for students accustomed to the exacting rigor of the natural and clinical sciences.

However, many thinkers, psychologists, philosophers and educators have long extolled the power of the liberal arts curriculum as well as Art and Arts Psychology courses to imbue the learner with humanism, versatility, compassion and wisdom and emotional intelligence. And that is one thing that we want our clinical science students to acquire. In their future professions in the clinical sciences someday, we want them to be compassionate, attentive listeners, who will put the total welfare, holistic health and mental harmony of the patient/client as their number one priority. We want our clinical science students to be ardent proponents of humanism and promote the health and wellness of the complete human being. After all, we Filipinos demand so much of our clinical science and health science experts.

The health of every human being is a primordial imperative for human survival. It is so important that it has been enshrined in the Constitution (1948) of the World Health Organization:

“Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. The enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being without distinction of race, religion, political belief, economic or social condition. The health of all peoples is fundamental to the attainment of peace and security and is dependent upon the fullest co-operation of individuals and States. The achievement of any State in the promotion and protection of health is of value to all.” (Preamble, Constitution of the World Health Organization).

 

Conclusion

So, the World Health Organization has defined health in very broad and wise terms. Consequently, it is up to us educators at various levels to listen to this moral mandate, a holistic paradigm of health, and execute it to the betterment of our learners. Creativity in classroom management is the key! Make Art Appreciation and Humanities classes enjoyable, cheerful and fun! Unleash those creative juices!

 

 

The Psychology of Creativity

“There is one thing stronger than all the armies of the world, and that is an idea whose time has come.”

Victor Hugo

“On rare occasions, there rises from the multitude of mediocrity that is
humanity a single person of extraordinary vision conjoined with the will to achieve that vision, who
presents a most formidable presence. One to shape the course of history.”

Steven Erikson

 

Creativity has been an incredible force through the millennia.

A perusal of the greatest works of mankind can stagger the imagination. The paintings of Raphael. The plays of William Shakespeare. The relativity equations of Albert Einstein. The creative ideas of Leonardo Da Vinci. The epic lines in the Iliad of Homer. The chess games of Paul Morphy, Bobby Fischer, Gary Kasparov and Magnus Carlsen. The amazing sculptures of Michelangelo. The haiku poems of Basho. The love sonnets of the Brownings. The enlightened mystical poems of the Upanishadic mystics. Masterful creations like Rodin’s Thinker. Incredible monuments like the Taj Mahal of India, the Great Wall of China and the Pyramids of Egypt. Innovative enterprises like the Ifugao Rice Terraces of the Philippines also comes to mind. The list is endless.

How about things, events or performances which are not easily recognizable as creative, yet pulsating with creative ecstasy in the moments of their creation? The gliding aerial moves of Michael Jordan and Lebron James on their way to the basket are easily appreciated by adoring fans. So are the perfect moves of an athlete like Nadia Comaneci as she essays perfection in gymnastics. Many situations have innate creativity in them, born of the inexhaustible wonder of the universe. The ideas of Lao Tzu are creative. They speak with incredible vitality and dynamism. The works of Steve Rune Lundin, author of the Malazan Book of the Fallen, are creative. They burst with archetypal lore. The loving flights of ecstasy traveled by Plotinus when he merges with the Infinite are creative. They are recollections of his mystical rapture with the Oneness of the Supreme Being. All these and many more are products of the amazing, infinite potential of the human mind, body and soul.

The history of mankind is replete with awesome moments like this, when the innate genius present in the genetic structure of an individual combines with the pregnant possibility of a single moment in time to produce a wonderful event, a creative endeavor. Since the dawn of history, creativity has been the primary weapon of the human mind in its attempt to understand, comprehend, systematize, analyze, conquer and ultimately master the natural world. Moments of creativity are evident in the very first hunters of the human race, when the hunter-gatherers in the wilderness fashioned rudimentary tools to arm themselves and improve their hunting expeditions. Moments of creativity are evident in those early communities, when the men and women started to organize themselves into primitive tribes, the precursors of cultures and civilizations. In fact, the primary institution of mankind, marriage and the family, is an act of creativity. It is creative in the sense that man and woman seeks a better and more exalted kind of relationship, a bonding paradigm which will improve the chances of the offspring to survive in the harsh world.

As mankind evolved, creativity became its primary weapon in the pivotal event of civilization building. Creativity is evident in the successful attempt to settle in the great and rich deltas of the world to erect the primordial cultural archetypes that eventually developed to become the cradles of civilization, such as the Tigris-Euphrates, Nile River, and Yellow River civilizations. Creativity is evident in the formulation of the first laws of mankind, such as the Code of Hammurabbi and the Ten Commandments. Creativity is evident in the inception and development of the various languages. Complex languages like Classical Greek and Exegetical Hebrew are testaments to the intelligence of man and his ability to construct amazing philosophical and theological systems. Profound languages like Ancient Sanskrit and Chinese are testaments to the wisdom of man and his ability to convey multiple layers of meaning. Romantic languages French, Spanish and Italian are testaments to the passion of man and his love of life, beauty and truth. Creativity became instrumental in the development of cultures around the world as well as the singular achievements of the great paragons of those cultures, the men and women of creative genius who regaled world history with their incredible personal achievements. Examples of these paragons range from ancients like Leonardo Da Vinci, Shakespeare, Newton, Bacon, Milton, Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, Leibniz, Boddhidharma, Alighieri, Longfellow, to contemporaries like Wilt Chamberlain, James Oliver Rigney, Jr., Frank Herbert, Enya, Michael Whelan, Wesley So, Sarah Brightman, Ramon Fernandez, etc. This is just a sample of masterful creators in various fields.

The awesome period called the Renaissance was an attempt to rekindle the awesome creativity that flourished in the Greek city-states. Mankind had reached a kind of saturation point in the Dark Ages and it was time for a unique renewal. The rediscovery of our creative heritage in the classical periods of Greece and Rome had incredible implications through the centuries after. Renaissance Art was a blossoming phase and a coming-of-age for mankind. It is a critical phase in the History of mankind that deserves a place not only in World History and Art classes but also in Psychology and Sociology classes.

The study of creativity enhances man in many ways. After all, Art has multiple functions in the life of man. It has a personal function, to elevate man and cultivate his refined senses. It has a religious function, connecting him with the Divine. It has a sociological function, networking man with the larger spheres of Life and society and community. And it has a cognitive function because it harmonizes both the right and the left brain.

Creative artists, creative scientists and creative mystics have labored long and hard to build the foundations of evolving humanity. This quest, though unrecognized by the common man, is helping inch by inch to catapult the human being to higher and higher levels of consciousness. This is the spiral of life, the Tao of creativity, the spirit of evolution.

 

 

The Hanged Man and the Magician

 

THE HANGED MAN AND THE MAGICIAN

Nonlinear Dynamics in Tarot, Metaphysics and Psychology

By Sensei Erwin Rimban

         

The archetypes of the Hanged Man and the Magician represent two ways of knowing and learning. They represent two different spiritual curriculum systems, two different epistemologies and two different viewpoints about the essential foundations of the Cosmos.

The Hanged Man is the epitome of the nonlinear world; he is processing vast amounts of information at an incredibly fast rate. He travels the cosmos in a nonlinear fashion, and reincarnates simultaneously. He does not have past lives, in the classical way that term is understood. What he has is “other lives.” On the other hand, the Magician is the standard bearer of the sequential world; he is processing information in a linear pattern, and achieves his learning goals step by step, by following the laws of classical logic. He reincarnates sequentially, fully apprised of his past lives’ accomplishments at every step of the way. Their conversation or dialogue is an interaction of two radically different interactional and learning schemes. This conversation has defined earth history for the past millennia.

Their experiential dialogue begins in earnest when each decides to explore a universe in the depths of space and time. The Hanged Man is the exponent of the participant-observation method of research par excellence. He will immerse himself into the very nexus of events. This would allow him maximum participation and optimum learning experiences. On the other hand, the Magician is the exponent of the control-manipulation paradigm of research. He is the learner who examines every variable first and adjusts them for maximum control of the situation. The idea is to immerse himself in the experience only after the various variables have been manipulated. Control is his intention, for he possesses great fear. Fear of the experiment getting out of hand, fear of the variables receding into chaos. Fear of the presence of chaos itself. And fear of the nonlinear universe.

But the manifold universe is a dance consisting of both Chaos and Order. These are two opposites of a polar continuum. They are patterned into the fabric of the manifested universe itself, the one cannot exist without the other. The one may deny the existence of the other, but the other shall continue to exist nonetheless. Devotees of both may fill in the polarized spaces of existence and continue the crusade of “cleansing” the universe of the opposite, and yet such opposites will always remain in the dance. Order and Chaos have derivates in the local world of consciousness singularities. They are manifested as the Known and the Unknown. Dualistic thinking is rooted in the celebration of one facet, as well as the downplaying of the other aspect. But this is a metaphysical error, for the one cannot exist without the other aspect displaying equal potency. The Magician, being the epitome of Order, tries to reduce the limits of the unknown at every instance. He controls the starting variables of his experiments and experiences in order to minimize the occurrence of the unknown parameters. In this respect, he is configuring the status of his experiments at the very beginning. On the other hand, the Hanged Man possesses the supreme receptivity of the perfect learner. He does not assume and control for the outcome of his experiments. He enters each experience with his cup empty, for he is the perfect vessel of the “beginner’s mind.” His opposite, the Magician, has thrown the beginner’s mind out of the window.

Using archetypal symbolism further, the Hanged Man is really the Fool who is upright at the tarot spread, cheerful, innocent and excited to begin his adventure. But the Magician is the Fool reversed. He is devoid of cheerfulness; he approaches the experiment in total seriousness. He seeks to manipulate the variables to ensure “victory” at all costs. His game is dominion, and he knows no other technique. This conversation is not really a dialogue of worlds to him; it has become the “Clash of Epistemologies.” Join me in this mental voyage as we discover how the clash of the learning systems has defined the history of earth since the dawn of time.

The moment that the Magician encounters a living universe, he instantly apprehends the dual nature of that system and “divides” his mental map into two distinct schematic topologies. He bifurcates the living world into two realms, white and black. But the definitions should surprise you, dear reader, for they are not what you seem to think they are. For the sequential mind of the Magician, the white represents all the known and the black all the unknown. The sequential mind therefore, classifies as evil something which he does not know. And what is his approach to the unknown? What else but conquest. The Magician will try to do everything to reduce the unknown into the known, otherwise he shall eliminate the unknown from his ken, for the unknown drives him to incredible depths of fear! On the other hand, the Hanged Man, learner par excellence of the nonlinear world, approaches the problem of duality differently. He understands that the dualistic nature of the universe is a central characteristic. Therefore, he does not try to conquer the unknown, because he knows that the more one acquires knowledge, the more one shall recognize his ignorance of other facets of knowledge. The learning moment therefore consists of experiencing the particular flavour of that existential narrative, and reflecting on that existential pathway to savour the full gifts that it can bestow. In addition, the Hanged Man is fully aware of the transient nature of material existence. He realizes that all the external forms of the manifested universe are dances of Ultimate Reality, in the process of transforming from one pattern into another.

The motto of the Hanged Man is: “The more you more, the more you don’t know.” The motto of the Magician is: “Knowledge is power, therefore I must possess that power.” How different are their learning goals!

Knowing that the fruits of manifestation imply constant duality, the Magician’s sequential mind endeavours to discover, conquer and apportion for himself the fruits of the labours of polarity. This gives him security as well as comfort. But he becomes attached to this material quest, and may be tempted to indulge in the passions of conquest during all the hours and eons of his physical life. A temptation too strong to resist, born out of fear. In the same vein, the Magician constructs elaborate patterns of domination strategies to subjugate the fruits of material existence. The presence and imposition of domination hierarchies reinforces his belief in the salvation offered by his sequential mind’s diversions. He then proceeds to catalogue neatly all the fruits of his conquests into orderly packages of logical comprehension. His cavern is the cave of logic. And he does not relent from his sequential pursuits.

From the other side of the fence, the Hanged Man’s soul is enjoying every moment of his adventures into material existence. But there is a caveat: his personality, consisting of the lower mind of his fractal soul and its animal vessel, is now deeply entrenched in the tortured paths of the planes of matter. By previous arrangement, his memory of the immersion process should now be in “sleeping mode” and he forgets his true nature. However his whole being still holds a memory of his spiritual origins, which is embedded in his attitude of not being content with the fruits of material existence alone. Nay, he longs for the beauties of the soul world, and seeks those beauties at every opportunity. Thus, he samples the beautiful products of art, music, and literature. And this gives him peace, for a time. But, this peace is not permanent, for he constantly longs for some kind of paradise, a paradise never found in any material realm. Still, he willingly enters the prison of the sacrificial chambers of material existence. Unfortunately, in this planet’s history, this prison has been reinforced by the deceptive matrix of the technosphere, which lures all travellers in its deadly embrace. In this planet, it appears that the adherents of the sequential paradigm have imposed a powerful hierarchy which effectively installs them and their minions on the top, while the suffering devotees of the nonlinear curriculum are pitifully enslaved at the bottom. Such is the façade of the prison world, which reveals its true nature to souls, step by step. A prison world of multiple masks.

Not content with the domination strategy, the sequential mind of the Magician has snatched the mentorship paradigms, and twisted them to serve its ultimate ends. Endeavouring to control the whole population of Earth, the technosphere, gauntlet of evil and control, has established various mental programming stations over the whole world. Some of them are easily comprehensive, because they exude exoteric paradigms. However, some of them reek of the occult and thus are mysterious even to their faithful adherents. Most of them cater to primary seekers of every known motivation and desire. Completing the gauntlet of control, the technosphere creates alternative operational schemes for all these mental programming stations. The idea is to confuse and deceive the slave race completely. Every kind of alternative scenario is thought up well in advance, from military to religious to economic. Alternative scenarios are realized, experimented upon, and implemented, thousands of years in advance if necessary. Such is the level of control desired by the sequential mind. At this point, the Magician has completely forgotten his spiritual heritage and fully embraces the temptations of fractal existence. This is his greatest weakness.

While his polar opposite is busy creating, erecting and fortifying edifices of control and deception, the Hanged Man is immersing himself deeper in the multifaceted dimensions of simultaneous reincarnation. While the Magician builds castles in this universe, it is the Hanged Man who lives in those castles and experiences all the myriad permutations and perturbations brought about by the periodic, dynamic nature of physical existence. Part of the experience of the nonlinear mind is the recognition of vectors of asymmetry, extremely powerful and potent engines of spiritual transformation. In fact, these two realities are the attractor states of these two learners! For the sequential learner, attractor states consist of the edification of his ego and its mental constructs. What began as an adventure of power, to gain security in the context of the unknown universe, has now evolved into deification of his fractal self’s egocentric personality. Amazing! For the nonlinear learner, attractor states consist of evolutionary thresholds that are born out of vectors of asymmetry, when the seas of time and the oceans of thought converge into the lattices of crystal space. What began as an immersion process continues as a learning experience, albeit colored by multiple theatres of apparent suffering. But suffering is a vector that leads to wisdom later on. The dramas of the two learners continue.

The sequential mind, for all its errors, still manages to learn. He discovers, from various sequential lifetimes, the presence of bifurcation points, thresholds in the continuum of spacetime, when evolutionary leaps are possible. He therefore endeavours to control those decision points. He does this by arranging all sets of events and alternative pathways in his favour, as well as mentally programming people to “create” worldspheres which are favourable to him and his sequential adherents. Even prophecy can fulfil this function and he partakes of it very well. The hierarchy of the technosphere is trapped in a series of bifurcating events, whose alternative streams are being controlled by multiple agents and scenarios. On the other side of the fence, the nonlinear devotees adapt by accessing knowledge from other realms of consciousness, to act as guiding beacons in the quest for self-discovery and soul growth. The dialogue of two epistemologies has now escalated into a veritable war of souls! The sequential mind adapts by coercing the esoteric realm into its maws. The nonlinear mind responds by accessing the Truth not from outside, by from inside. This is the key to success. If the nonlinear processor successfully transfers the gifts of the spirit from the soul realm into the material realm, then the Awakening process is guaranteed later on in the road to Truth.

Having been successful so far, the Magician now completely forgets the existence of the spiritual realm, and focuses completely on fortifying his home and his vehicles in this material realm which it calls paradise. The ego of his fractal self is now the sole locus of his being, and he adores the particular vehicle associated with his fractal self. His adoration and exaltation of his ego reaches such a limit that he does not realize that the inner struggle now occurring in his being are the warnings of his soul which is trying to be heard in the cacophony of the orchestra of the manifested universe. He is provided avenues of escape, representing the theatres of incubation, which he debases into alleys of decadence. These alleys are suffused with addictions of every kind, because the sequential mind would rather forget the spiritual truth than forgo his material desires. He is now held prisoner by the material realm and the deception of his egocentricity. This reality of the sequential mind continues in a periodic manner. The wheel of time turns and turns, and the sequential mind keeps repeating his errors, age after age. A deception of futility, born of fear, but catapulted into spiritual ignorance. A mess.

Meanwhile, our beloved nonlinear mind is about to find purchase in the depths of suffering. From the depths of his subconscious as well as the collective unconscious of mankind, he discovers the presence of the archetypes of humanity. These universal templates have been the engines of growth for mankind over the millennia. The discovery brings sweet inspiration to our nonlinear learner, who is delighted that universal experiences impress in our collective mind the necessity for growth. He brings these archetypal gifts into the light of consciousness, there to be shared by all, enriching and strengthening everyone. And now his final voyage begins, for immersion in the archetypes shall uncover a treasure trove of mysteries, and secrets and revelations which dazzle the mind and strengthen the soul. Accompanying the revelation of archetypal lore and the true history of mankind shall be the discovery of the methods of accessing Truth. These methods have been prepared by his Higher Self well in advance. They shall arrive at the most appropriate time. They shall connect him, the fractal soul, to his Higher Self,

And the Awakening shall occur……

How beautiful is this process, how incredible are the gifts of Truth, how fantastic are the revelations about the true nature of Ultimate Reality! And for the Hanged Man, paragon of the nonlinear world, these revelations are only the confirmations of his soul stirrings all along. What stirrings? That this material world is only a derivative of the real world. That this material existence is a poor copy of the true soul world. That magick is real, that power is born of the soul, and not of the body…..

And that we are immortal, loving and caring souls. That paradise is in the soul realm. And that true heaven is home. Home in the higher dimensions.

After the Awakening is complete, the souls of the nonlinear processor shall complete the union with their Higher or Deep Selves. And then, our beloved, completed, wise Deep Selves shall proceed into full Ascension. Victory at last shall be the crown of millennia of hard work.

Meanwhile, the sequential learner, is still trapped in the periodic realms of material reality. He shall remain there, until such time that he discovers the Truth…….

The Hanged Man and the Magician. Two worlds collide. Two fates intertwined. One Truth, many mirrors of that truth.

This has been the dialogue of the two worlds. This has been the conversation of two epistemologies. This is the contrast between the way of life of the nonlinear world and the sequential world. This is the voyage of the archetypes of the Hanged Man and his polar opposite, the Magician. This is the way of life in the Cosmos.


My Polycosmic Model of Reality

MY POLYCOSMIC MODEL OF REALITY

Sensei Erwin L. Rimban

 

The universe is a polycosm.

It is a sea of infinite possibilities. A moment is a fractal. This means any moment encapsulates the polycosmic and multifaceted nature of Ultimate Reality. This also means that within each moment resides other seas of other possibilities, other potentialities, and other permutations.

Within each timeless moment is a sphere pregnant with infinite possibilities.

How come we experience certain states and not others? How come there is an “experience” at all?

There are two ways through which the polycosmic universe engages itself and creates certainties.

One is the creation of consciousness singularities. Consciousness singularities engage certain facets of the polycosm and “make them happen.” They are “instruments of the paradigm of the cosmos.” They are angles, so to speak. They are mirrors of certain states. And just by emphasizing a certain angle, they cause certain realities to occur. They cause certain worlds to come into being.

These consciousness singularities “collapse” the probability waves of the sea of potentialities, thus causing “certain states to manifest.” But in reality, these states are there all the time. They are the possible scenarios, the unmanifested permutations, the nascent realms. It is the focus, the determination, the desire, the concentrated attention of the consciousness singularities which collapse the probability waves and cause these paradigms to occur.

 

(To be continued………..)cosmos-696x435

Into The Sea Of Molten Light

INTO THE SEA OF MOLTEN LIGHT

A Poem by Sensei Erwin L. Rimban

 

Black obsidian glass venturing

Far, far into the navels of the green sea

Of molten light, whose aperture

Can only be gleaned by those

Of sufficient motivation…

 

Character flaws suffuse the personalities

Of my storylines, it seems, for I cannot

Recall if any one of them sufficiently remembers

The ancient paths to dawn’s promise

I wager a thousand gold pieces

That no one among them possesses

The infinite courage required.

 

Portals opening into the maws of destiny configured

Portend the coming of slick midnight

Into the realms of men, perchance

To awaken those nonchalantly slumbering

From the laziness of extreme complacency….

 

The opulence of “sacred” words from books

Cannot compare to the radiance of experience

That which teaches us sears into the extremities

Of our bones the world spheres of immanence

A gift beyond compare for those who have braved

The immersion sequence that entertains the delights

Of Hanged Men.

 

A fractal self like me, like you

Feeds into the powers of immanence

To experience one beautiful flower of springtime

In the manifold universes of Creation.

Again, and again, and again….

 

The mirrors of the seers imply

That if the square root of one percent of thee

Remembers

The paths to Truth, and acts therein

Then the recursive power of infinite beauty

May propel the remaining sets into the cohesion

Of  Symmetry!

 

Then, one day, we awaken

To a different dawn, when our sights

Are dazzled by objects hitherto unknown

And the colours of the rainbow dance

With our senses, like fairies in the moonlight….

We should cry for the passing of shells

Into the naked woods of memory

Assuming they are forgotten in the mists

Of time; and the songs of sorrow may cascade

Into the memories of our souls, the lovely tunes

Enchanting us no end for we thought

There was nothing better.

 

I am a bridesmaid, and I shall be ready

For I am forever wishing to be married

To the Deep Self of my being, and

The One Who Animates Us is no less

Than our true, real self, hidden but glorious…..

 

Of course, we were mistaken

When we thought this was the only real world

This fragment of Infinity we call earth

Is only a dream within an illusion within a game

And now that we awaken from the darkness

Of millennia, let us see, let us see

The ecstasy of Infinite Reality!

 

Let me guess, let me guess

That what lies beyond is incomparable

And a fitting crown to all our efforts

In this monumental sacrifice when the soul

Was tricked into hypnotic sleep…..

 

Shall we dispense of letters now, my friends?

I am tired of the slow, dizzying mortal dreams

Of my left brain; and now only open

My deepest essence to the gold cords of my twin

Whose magickal guidance all these eons

Cannot but be gifted with the immortal skeins

Of undying gratitude.

 

The TAR Paradigm

 

landscape-2268775_1920THE TAR PARADIGM

THE TESTS OF AUTHENTICITY AND RELEVANCE

Conceived by SENSEI ERWIN L. RIMBAN, ANAM CARA Philippines

April 13, 2016
The Philippine Islands

PREAMBLE

Whereas, various esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological and interfaith groups, fellowships, congregations and organizations purport to know facets of Absolute Truth;
Whereas, these groups claim to have knowledge, revelations, insights, teachings, concepts, protocols, and developmental programs that purport to be reflections of Ultimate Reality;
Whereas, further, that these groups claim to have privileged information on the nature, dynamics and ultimate fate of the Cosmos or fractal aspects of the Cosmos, down to the individual and soul levels;
Whereas, further that these groups also claim the concomitant right to disseminate, explain, expostulate, convey and persuade humanity to either believe or accepts their teachings as real and authentic:
Therefore, we of the Anam Cara Philippines and Soulfriends Learning Organization, do hereby present these self-evident principles to Humanity on every level; to remind us to contemplate very deeply the authenticity, veracity, integrity and relevance of these esoteric groups and their teachings.

RATIONALE

There is a dearth of evaluative paradigms to assess, test, judge and evaluate esoteric groups of all kinds. In many places of the world since time immemorial, esoteric, spiritual groups and the like have almost been free from the piercing analysis and objective assessments that are the hallmarks of the sciences. Even though these esoteric groups are conceptually different from the sciences, there is a need to develop objective paradigms that may convince us of the authenticity and integrity of their teachings. The various esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological and interfaith groups, fellowships, congregations and organizations purport to know aspects of Ultimate Reality and have never been shy of promulgating their viewpoints as Truth in their citadels of learning. Consequently, their flocks absorb and accept their viewpoints completely, never questioning their authenticity and integrity. Exacerbating this condition is the lack of objective paradigms, parameters, protocols and methods to evaluate their truth-claims. The conceptual difference between science and religion should not be used by these esoteric groups as a shield to evade honest self-examination.
Trying to overcome these conceptual limitations, these Principles attempt to bridge the gap between veracity and ignorance by foreshadowing a set of paradigms that an ordinary person, a member of Humanity, can utilize as a guide in order to understand the elementary context and dynamics of the esoteric systems he/she is trying to comprehend and join. These paradigms do not claim to be the definitive criteria in assessing esoteric organizations of all kinds for all time. However, we are strongly suggesting to unfolding Humanity to keep these Principles in mind as guides to the portals of the Unknown. And at the same time, to be sufficiently open to similar themes that may be developed in the future along these lines.
We hope to add to the fund of knowledge and spur further growth in the critical self-reflection and honest self-examination of the various esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological and interfaith groups, fellowships, congregations and organizations of all kinds existing right now in Planet Earth.

THE TESTS OF AUTHENTICITY AND RELEVANCE (TAR)

FIRST PRINCIPLE: Any esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization must present a series of core concepts and teachings that are distinctive of their vision, mission and program and is a unique representation of their viewpoints of Ultimate Reality. (The Test of Uniqueness or Distinctiveness.)
Furthermore, this core must have been accessed by authentic methods whose epistemology and methodology can be examined and replicated to some degree so that objective seekers of Truth can analyze their veracity for themselves in the course of their lives, without relying on mere opinion, hearsay and secondary sources.
Furthermore, this core must be a unique set of teachings that contribute uniquely to the collective database of Humanity which can be learned, celebrated and practiced freely and without coercion.

SECOND PRINCIPLE: Any esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization must have a core set of teachings which partake of the collective knowledge of mankind. Although the First Principle is critical, these set of core teachings must be able to find relevant connections with the established fund of knowledge, whether in the various disciplines of the sciences or the plethora of fields existing in the esoteric world. (The Test of Connectivity.)
Furthermore, their set of teachings must be able to find connections to appropriate subfields in the sciences whose relevance has been shown to be authentic representations of facets of reality. To adhere to this theme of interdisciplinary thought, the set of teachings from these esoteric organizations must allow for honest self-examination and objective isomorphism. The more that these interconnections are realized, the more that these teachings must be reflective of authenticity and relevance.
In matters where the curriculum of the esoteric organization in question must gravitate too closely to the First Principle, in contradistinction to the Second Principle, then the Test of Workability breaks the tie. If the curriculum is shown to be workable and promotes wholeness, growth and harmony towards Humanity as a whole, then this esoteric organization may be considered to have passed this particular test.

THIRD PRINCIPLE: The set of teachings of the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must be conceptualized, expressed, conveyed and disseminated in a manner that is most comprehensive to a wide variety of learners, learning paradigms, learning contexts and learning environments. (The Test of Parsimony.)
Furthermore, every effort must be made by the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization to express these set of teachings in the most comprehensive manner possible. This is a proof that the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization is not developing hierarchies of oppression and dominance. Neither must the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization be seen to be catering to elite factions of Humanity only, nor should they be promoting occasions where such elitism become oppressive paradigms.
Furthermore, no instance must occur where the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization is promoting extreme violence of any kind to promote its aims. Tolerance for all the viewpoints of evolving Humanity must be one of its goals. At the same time, Humanity must respect the natural exuberance of the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization to present its mission and vision. This natural exuberance should, however, be limited to passionate discourse.
Furthermore, the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization must observe the allowance of open dialogue and objective appraisal of its curriculum dynamics, and must be open to an objective examination of its epistemology and methodology. The more that the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization allows objective examination, then the stronger is its penchant towards integrity, wholeness, symmetry and balance.
Furthermore, the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization must make every effort to preserve the complexity of its concepts and paradigms which is its natural cognitive right. Complexity is a function of development over time. However, the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization cannot sacrifice Parsimony for Complexity. In situations where Complexity reaches threshold levels, the mentors of the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must make every effort to turn the tide towards Parsimony and comprehension. As usual, the test of Workability breaks the tie and should be able to enlighten Humanity on the authenticity and veracity of the concept in question. Parsimony can also occur when a concept of the esoteric organization in question has been to clarify, improve and illuminate a theory or proposition in associated fields of the sciences.

FOURTH PRINCIPLE: The set of teachings of the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must be rooted in local realties, but should be able to transcend these local realities and function globally, when necessary, in appropriate contexts. (The Test of Integrity.)
Furthermore, although the nativity of the, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization can always be situated in a specific locale, its ability to transcend this locale must be eminent and recognizable. While at the same time, exposing itself to the various perspectives, viewpoints, and paradigms of mankind can only add to the capacity of its truth-claims to be verified.
Furthermore, the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization must not proselytize for the sake of proselytizing only but because it can sense that it can contribute to the collective wisdom and harmony of evolving Humanity. As such, it must celebrate the betterment, development and beneficent evolution of Humanity as one of its goals.
Furthermore, the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question, in its pursuit of its mission and vision, must never trample the rights of the individual as specified in various declarations of human rights. The esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must have a working template to celebrate the uniqueness of every human and balance this appreciation of individual uniqueness with the harmony of the common good.
Furthermore, the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must make every effort to promote its set of teachings in environments of integrity, wholeness, honesty, harmony and equality. Provided, however that the pursuit of tots wisdom tenets and truth-claims occur in environments that simultaneously promote the well-being and freedom of every human, whether that human is an adherent of its paradigms or not.

FIFTH PRINCIPLE: The set of teachings of the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must have a high degree of workability and applicability. Theoreticall eloquence and rhetorical elegance is nice, but Humanity needs actual, workable paradigms and methods. The mentors of the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must make every effort to improve and enhance the workability of their theses, paradigms, claims and directives. (The Test of Workability.)
Furthermore, that these set of teachings must be able to find appropriate contexts of their own where they can actually promote human progress.
Furthermore, the Cosmos is a living, dynamic system. The set of teachings of the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must be able to reflect this dynamism and flow. They should provide themselves with opportunities for development and evolution. Provided however that the well being of individuals and the harmony of collective humanity must always be taken into account. Wisdom is refelcted in service. The esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological or interfaith organization in question must be able to prove, repeatedly, that it considers the welfare of Humanity at all levels as part and parcel of its ongoing mission and vision.

CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

We have presented a dynamic, working guide to the portals of the unknown in the world of the esoteric, spiritual, occult, metaphysical, exobiological and interfaith organizations. May we request Humanity to examine and test these Principles in real-life scenarios. And to contemplate their permutations in singularities and communities. It is our dearest wish that clarity and objectivity may pervade the realms of the unknown regardless of the difficulty of accessing the truthfulness of their wisdom claims. If these set of Principles contribute to the evolving database of Humanity, then it has done its part in our journey towards unity, wisdom, wholeness, love and Ascension.


 

Spiritual Declaration of Human Independence

sunset-2205553_1920SPIRITUAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN INDEPENDENCE

By Sensei Erwin L. Rimban

 

I am a human. I am a citizen of the Multiverse. I am a disciple of the symmetry of Ultimate Reality. Consequently, I have the rights and privileges of a being and citizen of the manifolds of the Cosmos, fully recognizing the diversity and multiplicity of the Multiverse, and its capacity to express and evolve all forms of Life.

I am a human. I have the right to Life and Meaningful Existence. In all my cosmic explorations, I have the right to protect the identity and security of my being, fully recognizing the rights of other cosmic beings to the same. In addition, I have the right to celebrate, modify and evolve my own cosmic identity, cognizant of the dynamics of change, and respect the rights of others to the same.

I am a human. I have the right to Truth, and Knowledge, and Wisdom. I have the right to access, contemplate, celebrate, articulate and disseminate Truth in all its forms, without endangering the harmony of the Cosmos in the pursuit of Truth. I respect the rights of all other cosmic beings to Truth and the celebration of Truth in the community of cosmic beings.

I am a human. I have the right to free expression. I have the right to express myself aesthetically and experientially in all the forms of Art. I have the right to pursue, celebrate, present and modify my Art in all forms possible, as long as it does not injure a cosmic being, or cause injury to humanity or the community of cosmic beings in any way. Whenever my Art causes discord in the harmony of the Cosmos or purports to cause injury to any being or system of beings, I am willing to enter dialogue to modify such Art and rectify its mistake, in order to preserve and facilitate the harmony of the community of cosmic beings. I uphold the harmony of the whole, and the evolution of the Totality over the desires of a singularity.

I am a human. I have the right to go Home. In all my cosmic adventures, I have the right to inquire and quest for my true home, the nativity and origin of my being. In all cases where home is situated in higher realms or dimensions, I have the right to pursue Ascension in all its forms. Whenever such desire and quest occurs, the systems and communities of beings in the cosmos must respect this right and provide meaningful assistance, or refrain from constructing any impediments, as well as allow me the right to go home peacefully, cheerfully, and cordially. I have the right to extricate myself from impediments to the wisdom quest, as well as all other systems born of polaric duality which prevents my Ascension and return to higher realms.

I am a human. I have the right to experience all the facets of Ultimate Reality in all the realms, planes and dimensions of the Cosmos. Let no system of thought, or set of beings ensnare, or deceive, or enslave me in my peaceful exploration. Whenever such dichotomies of deception occur, may I exercise my right to resolve my harmony, integrity and freedom within the concord of cosmic harmony. Let my thoughts dwell on unity encompassing diversity, fully realizing the rights of other communities of beings to experience Ultimate Reality in their own ways, modes and styles, and frames of reference.

I am a human. And I am free. Free to travel the manifold dimensions of the Cosmos. Let us all respect the rights of every being to cheerfully experience Life in all its forms, acquire Wisdom and return Home.

I am a human. I am free. I am Love. And I am recursive!