Note: the first two paragraphs are introductory and are derived from the first post in this series. I’ll continue to repost them, in case this is your first time reading a post from this series.
When I was still a doctoral candidate at Sofia University, one of the courses I completed was “World Religions.” This was one of the classes I enjoyed the most during my time at Sofia University. I’d never had such broad exposure to the world’s religions before and this class really allowed me to gain a better understanding of them.
One of the papers I wrote for that class really tied in the fact that I was in a clinical psychology PhD program. The purpose of the paper was to collect quotes from scriptures of the various world religions that I could use with clients/patients when I became a therapist. While I’m no longer pursuing a PhD in clinical psychology, the quotes I collected could certainly be of use, so I thought I’d share them here.
Today’s collection of scriptures for guidance comes courtesy of Taoism. Enjoy!
The man who has had his feet cut off in punishment discards his fancy clothes – because praise and blame no longer touch him. The chained convict climbs the highest peak without fear – because he has abandoned all thought of life and death. These two are submissive and unashamed because they have forgotten other men, and by forgetting other men they have become men of Heaven. You may treat such men with respect and they will not be angry. Only because they are one with the Heavenly Harmony can they be like this. (Chuang Tzu, 23)
A person in danger should not try to escape at one stroke. He should first calmly hold his own, then be satisfied with small gains, which will come by creative adaptations. (I Ching)
Look upon life as a swelling tumor, a protruding goiter, and upon death as the draining of a sore or the bursting of a boil. (Chuang Tzu, 6)
Birth is not a beginning; death is not an end. There is existence without limitation; there is continuity without a starting point. Existence without limitation is space. Continuity without a starting point is time. There is birth, there is death, there is issuing forth, there is entering in. That through which one passes in and out without seeing its form, that is the Portal of God. (Chuang Tzu, 23)
He who knows other men is discerning; he who knows himself is intelligent. He who overcomes others is strong; he who overcomes himself is mighty. He who is satisfied with his lot is rich; he who goes on acting with energy has a (firm) will.
He who does not fail in the requirements of his position, continues long; he who dies and yet does not perish, has longevity. (Tao Te Ching, 33)
The valley spirit dies not, aye the same;
The female mystery thus do we name.
Its gate, from which at first they issued forth,
Is called the root from which grew heaven and earth.
Long and unbroken does its power remain,
Used gently, and without the touch of pain. (Tao Te Ching, 6)
The Tao in its regular course does nothing (for the sake of
doing it), and so there is nothing which it does not do.
If princes and kings were able to maintain it, all things would of
themselves be transformed by them.
If this transformation became to me an object of desire, I would
express the desire by the nameless simplicity.
Simplicity without a name
Is free from all external aim.
With no desire, at rest and still,
All things go right as of their will. (Tao Te Ching, 37)
If you liked this post, you might like one of the other posts in this series: