Any experience you have that does not bring you peace, you failed to accept. To the degree you feel removed from a peaceful state, you have a list of rejections.
It’s really amazing how strong people are. They set themselves against their own nature so intensely and for so long they wind up like little human bonsai trees. Which makes me ask, what do you think of when you see a bonsai tree?
I think of the way they are trained into those shapes. Slow patient sculpting over a long time.
The ultimate mystery of aging is that there is nothing you should be trying to struggle with. Struggle makes people old. There is nothing to avoid. You are the age you think you are. You got older because you accepted beliefs that twisted your natural self image, your instinctive sense of self, to the point where you most likely lost much of a sense of that first self in the first place.
Meh, that kid was dumb. That kid has gotten worse, because you couldn’t kill him by what you tried to do. Not without literally killing yourself. So the conflict between your training and your inner nature twisted the concept that you were trying to use on yourself. Distorting it even if it was wisdom. Making it foolishness even if it was originally good advice.
You don’t grow wise by growing up as they say. You gain wisdom by growing along the path of your nature. Even if you were seriously immature and juvenile, no effort to outwit that was valid or even proper. Left to embrace your Te as the Chinese might say, you would have acquired new life experiences no matter how you lived. You would have grown and learned, and without violating your inner nature.
Te? It’s expressed metaphorically as the uncarved block. Te roughly translates to virtue.
But hopefully those new life experiences will be handled in a better way. They can never be handled in a better way than your inner nature suited you for. This is why you grew so tired and frustrated. There is no such thing as a wiser head.
Taoism is paradoxical when it comes to problem solving and concepts of progress. Its teachings don’t forbid these efforts as it is human nature to try to do something about anything they experience, respond to anything that moves them. But what they advise is to see the value in the situation as it is, or the person as they are. Try to understand how a rock makes a perfectly good rock, and if you must do something with this rock, make every effort to preserve what it was in its original form.
The South American cultures left us an example of this. They quarried stone, but in such a way that the stones strength was respected. Its integrity not compromised in the least, and then they fitted it together in ways that were defined by the quality of the stone and not some neat grid they thought was more pleasing.
Yes. They worked with it’s fault lines. We can work with our own fault lines rather than trying to disrespect our own nature and stress these bodies and the lives we are living in them. We can embrace our inner nature with both its weakness and its strength.
What if we have no faults? Then you have a fault of no faults. You will create a disruption from your break with the natural flow and the outcomes will not be very stable. If there was a truly faultless person in this world, they would be the world biggest loser, the human embodiment of martyrdom, and their life would be completely wasted. Heaven forbid any such person ever arise.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.