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The Beauty Of The Tao Te Ching Verse 8

Everyday Living with the Tao Te Ching


Verse 8


The supreme good is like water,

which nourishes all things without trying to.

It is content with the low places that people disdain.

Thus it is like the Tao.


In dwelling, live close to the ground.

In thinking, keep to the simple,

In conflict, be fair and generous.

In governing, don't try to control.

In work, do what you enjoy.

In family life, be completely present.


When you are content to be simply yourself

and don't compare or compete,

everybody will respect you.


When I read this verse from the Tao Te Ching, one thing instantly comes to mind, it's a bit of cliche these days I know, but nevertheless it sums it up perfectly - less is more.


We keep trying to add to our lives to make them more complete. More knowledge, more power, more money, more belongings, more power, more control, more respect; even the search for more happiness and fulfilment becomes another thing that needs to be acquired.


But, it's already within us. It's the letting go of these desires that reveals our true nature, that was there all along, "When you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everybody will respect you." Is there any greater aim in life other than to be simply ourselves? Just the thought of being 'simply ourselves' feels like a heavy weight lifted. There's no pressure, no exhaustion, no competition with that.


Just simply being.


Accepting ourself exactly as we are in each and every moment. Not bemoaning any lack, or aspiring for further gain.


Just simply being.

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