Reach for the Sky

The Tao that can be spoken is not the
…..true Tao.
Any name which can be given to it
… not its true name.
That which was before Heaven and
…..Earth is Tao.
Tao is the mother of all things.
The wise seek its mystery,
…..and find it made of opposites.
Opposites arise from the same source
…..and are identical in all but name.
The mystery of opposites is so profound,
… understand it
is to open the door of Tao.

Lao Tsu, Tao Te Ching

28 Comments CherryPie on Jan 27th 2013

28 Responses to “Cherie’s Place – Thought for the Week”

  1. Have you heard of this…
    Emptiness is fullness, fullness is emptiness?

    • CherryPie says:

      No LC I have not heard of that one before…

    • Eh?…….

      (Huh – Stupid Wordpress would not allow me to say that, as it told me “It appears you have already said that”. Yes I have, but in response to a different person and a different issue, first time in response to Lao Tsu, 2nd time in response to London Caller. It would be difficult to communicate if having used a comment once we were never allowed to use it again… Stupid Wordpress. Eh?)

      In future I may have to say “I could comment on that but unfortunately it would require a comment that I have already used, and so I have none of that comment left.”

      So, let’s see if it will allow me now, to say, in response to London Caller’s words:


  2. ....peter:) says:

    This is a wonderful thought of the day Cherrie.. i love your flowers….peter:)

  3. james higham says:

    Yes, subtle lies in the oh so reasonable sounding, simplistic equal and opposite. This is what the world is up against.

    • I think that phrase refers, perfectly legitimately, to the magnitude of equal forces operating in opposite directions, or… electric charges of equal magnitude but opposite sign, or the positive and negative amplitudes of different parts of a waveform, etc.. etc…. context is everything in distinguishing what is valid from what is not.

      • CherryPie says:

        I took that part of the quote to be referring to yin-yang The following is a quote by a friend of mine although they use the Japanese word for the same thing.

        “Onmyō is the older Japanese character reading of inyō, more commonly referred to in the West by the Chinese expression “yin-yang”. Meaning ‘shade’ and ‘light’, the concept of Onmyō expands to include female-male, positive-negative, inner-outer and life-death. In fact, it encompasses all of the opposites that are both hidden and seen in the universe and it is cyclical in nature. At a deeper level, it embodies harmony. ”

        So equal and opposite forces would seem to be part of that.

        • But the concepts of Yin and Yang are very far from being “identical in all but name”. I was actually following it and finding some sense in it, especially in relation to fundamental science, until I reached “identical in all but name” – ie identical but just given different names.

          • CherryPie says:

            That may be down to the translation. I got this excerpt as a quote in a book. I have two copies of the Tao Te Ching and both translations are very different. I will see if I can find the relevant passage in them, to see how it compares.

  4. Ginnie says:

    There’s truth in that, I’m sure, Cherry. We often say opposites are two sides of the same coin! Always intriguing to think about it….

  5. Sean Jeating says:

    When the stones are swimming the leaves will sink.

  6. the language of the spirit is so vivid
    it can’t be contained by words, can it.
    i love this idea and the lovely
    blossoms you share…thank you:)

  7. Claude says:

    Splendid photo. It’s so alive…

  8. liz says:

    Can’t think of Tao without thinking of Pooh.

  9. Ayush says:

    wonderful shot. i like the colour of the flower and the greenery makes for a nice background

  10. CherryPie says:

    Translation One:
    The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao.
    The name that can be named is not the eternal name.
    The nameless is the beginning of heaven and earth.
    The named is the mother of ten thousand things.
    Ever desireless, one can see the mystery.
    Ever desiring, one can see the manifestations.
    These two spring from the same source but differ in name;
    this appears as darkness.
    Darkness within darkness.
    The gate to all mystery.

    Translation by Gia-Fu Feng & Jane English

    Translation Two:

    The Tao that cannot be told
    is not the universal Tao.
    The named that cannot be named
    is not the universal name.

    In the infancy of the universe,
    there were no names.
    Naming of fragments the mysteries
    of life
    into then thousand thins and their manifestations.

    Yet mysteries and manifestation
    spring from the same source:
    The great integrity
    which is the mystery within manifestation
    the manifestation within mystery,
    the naming of the unnamed,
    and the un-naming of the named.

    Translation by Ralph Alan Dale

    Curiouser an curiouser said Alice!!