Tao Te – 2

here beauty is enveloped by the ugly
joy is set off by suffering

having walks blind to not-having alongside
difficult and easy vibrate fore and aft
long and short are caught in perspective
high and low are known by the other
voice and sound ring changes within without
front and back circle around around

in such a time of best and worst
wise acts artless
wise saying still
ten thousand choices pile upon one another
no end in sight

create without a result
work without a memorial
act in time and move on
flow is enough

Tao Te – 1′

It turns out I am desire personified. I want to say more about my Tao Te – 1 reflection.

One approach to the Tao Te Ching is to divide or categorize it into discrete sections: Tao (1–37) and Te (38–81). I was not able to refrain from looking at Tao, except through Te. That first jotting replaced an emphasis upon the identity/form/name of Tao with my tendency to control through what is named and what is not. This impulse to name, behind any naming, may bring too much Te to the table of Tao.

I’m about to bring over my signification of G*D (a simplification of a preferred cloud-of-dots advocated by Rustum Roy in Experimenting with Truth) may periodically show up as Ta* — the asterisk always pointing beyond what can be questioned or known or understood. Every definition of Tao or God misses more than it describes. This humility of form is a critical practice.

I expect to find references to Nature and the Feminine (before patriarchy) to be important correctives to our rational, capitalistic context.

Do you have a working definition of Tao and Te?

I’m interested in how to talk about Ta* and Te in mixed company (yes, they are as tricky to define as sex). Each attempted definition probably says more about the speaker than that spoken of. Nonetheless, we do try to make sense of experience. For the moment, my shorthand is: Ta* – Beyond; Te – Ethical Application.

Here I am, stuck in a delightful foreground/background optical illusion. Time to relax my gaze and practice improving my “free-viewing“.