Chapter 7: Choose the New
the joy of being alive, but not its misery.”
“‘You understand the misery of it. The weariness of growing old all men understand, but not its ease; you understand its ease. The ugliness of death all men understand, you understand its repose.”
But this is again choice. Both should be chosen together. Both should be chosen so much together that there is no choice. Life is ugly and life is beautiful, and death is ugly and death is beautiful. Because existence exists through dialectical processes.
Your left leg moves because your right leg stands still: the movement becomes possible because one leg is standing still. Then your left leg stands still and your right leg moves: the movement is possible because of no-movement.
I can speak to you because something deep inside is always silent. The word is meaningful, significant, only because of the silence. If there is no silence, then the word is meaningless, then it is gibberish. When the word is meaningful, always remember that the meaning comes through silence, silence pours into the word and the word becomes luminous.
Love is beautiful because there is the possibility of hate, otherwise love would be so sweet that it would create diabetes! Just sugar, sugar, sugar.. No, the salt is also needed; hate gives salt to life. Activity is good, but if there is no inactivity in it, it will create neurosis - obsessive action. Inactivity is good, but if there is no activity in it, it will be a sort of death, a lethargy, a dullness. Both are good, the whole is good.
Tao says: The whole is good. Don’t choose. Let it be as it is. As it is, it is a wise arrangement. There cannot be a better world than this. There is no possibility of any improvement. You accept both, and through that acceptance, you transcend.
This Tzu Kung was just close to the door through which he would have escaped into the open sky. He has been misled again. Remember, in your life also there will be many moments when you can escape, but your past is heavy - it pulls you back. Confucius could succeed because Tzu Kung’s whole past was nothing but theories, words, philosophies, doctrines; and they understand each other’s language. He pulled him back. Again that great moment was missed. And these great moments come very rarely.