TAOISM | The Power of Letting Go

TAOISM | The Power of Letting Go

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Language: English

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Number of phrases: 281

Number of words: 1836

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mastery of the world is achieved by letting things take their natural course you cannot master the world by changing the natural way loud sir our civilization is in a state of ongoing strivings in which control seems to be the highest virtue we don't have to look far to observe this in the workplace for example employees are more and more controlled and supervised especially now we have the technology to do so and
00:30
governments put more efforts into tracking their citizens whether it's through camera supervision or the proposal of a so-called social credit system ironically the letter is a Chinese invention that goes utterly against the philosophy that emerged from the same soil Taoism as opposed to a control obsessed Society Taoism revolves around letting go and going with the flow at first glance the act of letting go may seem a form of
01:02
weakness but according to the Daoists by a correct understanding of how the universe works we can approach life more intelligently more efficiently and go with the flow rather than swimming against it therefore the power of letting go is a form of strength that's based on sophistication rather than force [Music] the daodejing
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the main taoist scripture was written by a mysterious sage named Lao Tzu there are countless ways in which we can interpret this text one way is to see it as a guide for a ruler what characterizes the passages of the daodejing regarding governance is that loud sir puts emphasis on ruling by not ruling as he compares governing a country with frying a small fish too much poking spoils the meat he argued that when a ruler tightens his grip on
02:05
the people all kinds of negative side effects will occur we see that people become distrustful towards one another when the government is too patronizing and when it's too intrusive people become rebellious but when a leader is unobtrusive and act with integrity then people will become whole as they are granted the space to naturally evolve it's clear that Lao Tzu favors a passive form of governance which doesn't just apply to ruling a state but also to the governance of ourselves because letting
02:37
things go is the key to let nature do the work which applies to any level in this video I would like to show you several ways in which Taoism shows us the power of letting go the first one is the art of non doing the Taoist concept of wu wei can be explained as effortless action or the so-called flow state but also as non doing or knowing when to act and when not to when we take a critical look at ourselves we see that a need for control prevails in many areas of life
03:09
we feel the need to control our pets or children our gardens our video games in some cases our partners and first and foremost our future now control isn't always a bad thing in order to survive we need to exert our influence on the environment to some extent especially self control can lead us in a positive direction without control human civilization would probably never have occurred but too much of it doesn't get us anywhere it seems that we systematically
03:41
underrated the natural influences that lie at the basis of our daily lives we can't control everything and many things happen when we stop controlling them let's take a tree for example we can plant it we can water it we can add some fertilizer and make sure it's exposed to enough sunlight but any more intervention would only damage the process because we interrupt nature from doing its job another example is attraction the first step to attracting someone is simply
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showing ourselves so that the person we want to attract knows that we exist then attraction either happens or not when attraction is there one can easily blow it by taking too much action attraction is a natural phenomenon that is beyond our control it absolutely cannot be enforced instead it has to grow or erupt spontaneously and there's only one way to let the seed of attraction grow into a beautiful tree which is not
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intervening aside from the occasional watering silence makes the heart grow fonder that's why letting go is vital in relationships because by letting go we give space to the forces of the universe to unfold after a fight for example anger naturally erodes and when Trust is breached one cannot enforce restoration it has to grow back naturally so letting go makes the difference between controlling and allowing the second one is embracing change the
05:15
Daoists were very aware that life and fault in a constant movement between opposites between high and low light and dark yin and yang there isn't much we can do about it and the most efficient way of living is simply moving along with the waves of existence the flow of life and its transformations are inevitable yet we see so many people cling to their circumstances in the metaphor of the river stream they hold on tightly to a branch or a rock afraid to let go
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because they want complete control over their position they simply don't trust the universe and the consequence of this is a rigid lifestyle they see life passing them by including many opportunities for positive change and they miss out on a lot of fun as Lao Tzu wrote in the daodejing and I quote the living are soft and yielding the dead are rigid and stiff living plants are flexible and tender the dead are brittle and dry and quote
06:18
there are also those who swim against the stream they are the biggest energy wasters of them all perhaps they see honor and virtue in taking an extremely non agreeable stance in life but exercising a constant resistance to how the universe and faults isn't a very efficient way to live and most likely makes one worn out and miserable this non acceptance of how things are is also the cause of people fighting against themselves because of certain societal
06:50
expectations people engage in a battle against their inherent nature instead of flowing along with the attributes that nature has given them we could say follow your strength instead of trying to repair your weakness embracing change also applies to uselessness and usefulness Taoist philosophers Wang Zi observed that usefulness depends on the circumstances as he told about a merchant that tried to sell shirts to a tribe whose members were covered in
07:20
tattoos and always showed them off by walking around allas to them shirts are useless but to us at least most of us they aren't useless at all usefulness and uselessness are relative and are not to be treated with rigidity when you live in New York for example having a car is less useful and when you live somewhere in the countryside where the next village is 50 kilometers away so we ought to be willing to let go of things that are useless in one situation and adopt what's useful instead that's how
07:53
we make change an ally and not an enemy the third one is not focusing on outcomes comparable to the Stoics the Daoists observed that a focus on future outcomes has a negative effect on us focusing too much on the future makes us anxious our present endeavors become fueled by a desire for an uncontrollable result and the more we crave that the less we value the only thing we have which is the present moment [Music]
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zhang zhu goes one step further by telling us that the more we value something external the worse we perform in the present he tells us about an archer that loses his ability to shoot when he focuses too much on the price i quote he was contending for a piece of earthenware puts forth all his skill if the price be a buckle of brass he shoots timorously if it be for an article of gold he shoots as if he were blind the skill of the archer is the same in all the
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cases but in the two letter cases he's under the influence of solicitude and looks on the external price as most important all who attach importance to what is external show stupidity in themselves and quote now this doesn't mean that the people that want external things are stupid it means that when our minds are in the future we paralyze ourselves in the present this principle lies at the basis of the flow state that we see in activities like sports art and dancing
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when we experience this flow state we're so immersed in the task at hand that we completely forget about the future it's like the dance dances itself [Music] the last one for now is letting go of excess in a society in which status is an ultimate concern everyone wants to be at the top not because it's necessarily the best place to be but because we have collectively decided that high status is
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preferable and the low status is horrible this also comes with a collective pursuit of the former and a collective aversion to the latter but the tallest trees catch the most wind and when we are at the top it takes a tremendous amount of effort to stay there because everyone wants to take your position it's stressful compared to the lower regions in which one lives more privately with less competition less enemies and in general less effort
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the other extreme however is a place of deprivation if we deliberately seek the absolute bottom we become ascetics although in a different way there are still a strong attachment the attachment to deprivation the question we can ask ourselves is what do we truly need Wang Zi observed that a bird that nests in the forest wants no more than one branch and that a mouse that drinks from the pond drinks no more than a belly full so if we aim for what we need and let go of
11:07
excess we prevent possessions from becoming our prison cell which allows us to travel light epicures observed as well that the basic necessities for life are easy to come by and that living moderately is the key to happiness it's a path that's easy and sustainable as Lao Tzu wrote those who use moderation are already on a path to the dao and quote when we stop striving we give nature space to unfold in trusting the
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universe and accepting that it's ever-changing lies the opportunity to become loose and supple instead of rigid and brittle the power of letting go means that we float along the stream without grasping for rocks and branches and that we cut loose that weight so we navigate through life with minimal effort thank you for watching [Music]
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you [Music]

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