Chapter 2: The Way Is Perfect
No, a wise man balances, and he knows life balances itself. If you do one - but totally, so nothing is left, the whole energy has enjoyed activity - then rest is automatic, then rest follows. And when you enjoy rest then activity follows, because when you rest you gain energy, you become rejuvenated. Then the whole body is filled, flooded with energy. Now, again you have to share it, and in activity you have to release it. Again you will be filled.
It is just like clouds: they have to rain, again they will be filled - the ocean is there to fill them. They have to rain, again they will be filled. The river has to pour itself into the ocean, it will be filled again. The more it pours, the more it will be filled.
Sosan says: Be active totally, then you will be able to be passive totally. Then both the extremes meet and a subtle balance is achieved. That subtle balance is samyaktva, that subtle balance is tranquility. That subtle balance is the highest peace possible, the peak, the climax, the crescendo, because when two things balance - outer and inner, activity and passivity - suddenly you transcend them both. When they both balance you are no longer this, no longer that. Suddenly you are a third force - the onlooker, the witness. But you cannot strive for it.
When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity
your very effort fills you with activity.
As long as you remain in one extreme or the other
you will never know oneness.
Transcend extremes. Don’t be a worldly man and don’t be a so-called spiritual man. Don’t be a theist, don’t be an atheist. Don’t be mad for outer wealth and don’t be obsessed with inner tranquility. Balance - balance should be the motto.
Those who do not live in the single way
fail in both activity and passivity,
assertion and denial.
And this is the result: those who choose extremes fail in both, because if you go on being active and active and active, and no passivity is allowed, from where are you going to revitalize yourself? You will become an empty shell, impotent, powerless, poor.
That happens to so-called successful people in the world: politicians, presidents, prime ministers. By the time they have achieved, they have lost everything. They are no longer there. Success is there, but in the bargain they have sold themselves, they are no longer there. And the same happens to those who choose the inner, the introverts: by the time they reach inside, they find only turmoil all around.
If you choose the extreme, you will fail in both. If you don’t choose, you will succeed in both. Balance succeeds, extremes fail. This balance is called by Buddha the middle path, majjhim nikaya; by Confucius, “the golden mean”.