TAO and Adversities
Life is never smooth sailing, and life journey is always a bumpy ride. Tao wisdom may help you in the art of living well. Tao wisdom comes from the profound wisdom of Lao Tzu, the ancient Chinese sage who authored the immortal Chinese classic Tao Te Ching, which has been extensively translated into many languages worldwide. Tao wisdom can show you how to heal your pain and sorrow.
For example, after the death of a dear friend or someone close to you, you may experience a period of denial—refusing to accept the harsh reality of death. This is the human mind's way of protecting us from painful emotions associated with grief and sorrow. Tao wisdom emphasizes the dualism of life: that is, good and bad co-exist just as happiness and sorrow; and they complement each other. Without sorrow, there will be no happiness, and one gives way to the other somehow and some time.
Sorrow may bring anger: anger with yourself or whoever responsible for the death of your loved one. The human mind always looks for an answer or an explanation of why something undesirable happened. If you blame yourself, then guilt and regret may ensue; if you blame others, anger is generated. According to Tao wisdom, anger is the source of human sufferings. Anger originates from desires and expectations that are not met or fulfilled.
The next phase is bargaining with God about reversing what has happened to you. You use "what if?" and "if only" sort of pleas to bargain for second chances. Tao wisdom says you should live in the present, and not the past which was gone, nor the future which is uncertain. According to Tao wisdom, you simply embrace whatever that comes along in your life without judgment.
After the initial denial, reality begins to sink in. You start to feel the bereavement that cause you to sink into deep depression with negative emotions of grief, regret, and sorrow. This is the darkest or even the longest stage of grief and sorrow. Spontaneity is of one the essentials of Tao wisdom; it means everything in life follows a certain natural order, such as the four seasons, or life becoming death. Understanding the natural order of things may deliver you from your depression and lift you out of the darkness of sorrow.
The way to overcome pain and sorrow is acceptance. Sooner or later, you will come to terms with the death of your loved one when you become aware that everything is going to be OK, that you will survive the loss of your loved one, and go on living as if everything is a miracle even though your life may be different without your loved one.
Tao wisdom is profound human wisdom that requires you to have an empty mind free from pre-conditioned thinking. Living in the present enables you to become mindful of your thoughts so as to have clarity of mind, which is human wisdom. With wisdom, you begin to see things as they really are and not as what you “think” they may be. More importantly, it allows you to let go of all your attachments, including your attachment to your ego, to material things, and to your loved ones. Letting go lets you see the nature of everything, including pain and sorrow, and even death.
To find out more about the profound wisdom of Tao, click here.
Copyright© by Stephen Lau