Saturday, July 29, 2017

Great Acts

Great acts are made up of small deeds. - Lao Tzu

According to legend Lao Tzu was keeper of the archives at the imperial court. When he was eighty years old he set out for the western border of China, toward what is now Tibet, saddened and disillusioned that men were unwilling to follow the path to natural goodness. At the border (Hank Pass), a guard, Yin Xi (Yin Hsi), asked Lao Tsu to record his teachings before he left. He then composed in 5,000 characters the Tao Te Ching (The Way and Its Power).

Many of us feel an overwhelming sense of despair at the state of affairs in Washington, D.C.
We have a madman in the White House, a Congress filled with mentally challenged Republicans (minus a few), not to speak of an uninformed and ignorant swath of Americans who mindlessly follow, unaware that they are sawing the branch they sit on.

War, disease and hunger plague millions if not billions. Those of us living in prosperity pinch ourselves at our good fortune, fully aware of the blessings of the lucky few...and fervently wish that the evil eye continues to sheathe its glance. Some might pray for the rest of humanity to find abundance, peace and happiness. Some might donate life-giving funds or other material items to alleviate suffering. Nonetheless, the enormity of humanity's plight and the missteps of self-serving leaders trigger a sense of futility. Our life-affirming offerings seem like droplets in the ocean, disappearing into tidal waves of dysfunction.

This is why we need great masters whose panoramic vision spans the totality of existence and, with their clear vision, nudge us to proceed with courage. Lao Tsu's famous words of wisdom, "The thousand mile journey begins with the first step," or alternately, "Great acts are made up of small deeds," provide an antidote to the collective sense of disempowerment. Rooted in reality, his words of wisdom point out a truth hidden in plain view. Every state of being, every accomplishment, is merely the tip of the iceberg. Near-infinite acts/events form the foundation upon which positive outcroppings appear.

Understanding thus, how could we ever feel discouraged? The truth is that everything matters, whether we impact a billion people or just two. Patience, courage, wisdom and compassion become the tenets of day to day existence. As long as we never give up, any act large or small will propel us into a brighter future.


  1. I agree with every single word of Carole's.
    My greatest wish would be for France to stop stealing from 14 french-speaking West African ex -colonial republics, vast sums of money under the dishonest pretext of 'reparations' for Colonial investments!
    Imagine this money being spent on eradicating poverty and free universal education.
    Every mobile phone we use relies on cobalt, mined under atrocious conditions in the Republic of Congo, by tiny enslaved kiddies, thus condemning them to a Hobbesian - 'nasty short and brutish life'.
    I dream of a MANDELA Plan for Africa, to combat corruption and put Africa's great natural wealth to work for African citizens.

    PS: for the sake of the entire world I dream of the impeachment of Trump.

    1. Amen Richard. I share your aspirations.


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