This blog is an interpretation of the Tao te Ching "Tao Virtue Book" which is attributed to Laozi "Lao Tze" a Chinese philosopher who lived circa 600 b.c.

Please remember always that this is the description of the Tao and not the experience of the living Tao. Hopefully, this blog will not serve as analysis or commentary but as a window into the Tao. You are encouraged to disagree with this interpretation, involve yourself in self-study, and ultimately leave all concepts behind and so experience the living Tao.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Chapter 52: Understanding Attachment

When creation began, Dao became the world's mother.

When one knows one's mother he will m turn know that he is her son. When he recognizes his sonship, he will in turn keep to his mother and to the end of life will be free from danger. He who closes his mouth and shuts his sense gates will be free from trouble to the end of life. He who opens his mouth and meddles with affairs cannot be free from trouble even to the end of life.

To recognize one's insignificance is called enlightenment. To keep one's sympathy is called strength. He who uses Dao's light returns to Dao's enlightenment and does not surrender his person to perdition. This is called practicing the eternal.

Tao te Ching chapter 52


This chapter deals with the subject of attachment.

The first stanza observes that, since the Dao came before all things, when the physical Universe came into being, the Dao was its origin.

The second stanza observes that, when we realize that we come from a place before the physical world, we can see that we are free and not bound to the suffering of this life.  The second sentence of this stanza can be seen to be repeating a message from the Buddha.  Our senses are of this world, to know our true self, we must go beyond them.  We must not remain attached to this world and the sensations it pour in to us through our bodies.

The first two sentences of the final stanza can be seen as statements on the values of modesty and compassion.  The last two remind us again to remember our true nature and to not fall into the trap of physical form.