Meditation Point #130 – Less Self, Selfless

ktadmin Post in A Zen Thing, Quotes,Tags: ,

He who stands on his tiptoes does not stand firm;
He who stretches his legs does not walk easily.
So, he who displays himself does not shine;
He who asserts his own views is not distinguished;
He who exalts himself does not find merits acknowledged;
He who is self-conceited has no superiority allowed to him.
Such conditions, viewed from the standpoint of the Tao,
are like remnants of food or a tumor on the body, which all dislike.
Hence those who pursue the course of the Tao do not adopt and allow them.

— Tao-Te-Ching

This passage seemed rather pertinent as I am currently teaching my students the finer points of free sparring.  What?!  I know many will wonder how this passage could relate to sparring.  The first two lines seem obvious enough, Stance!  The 4th through 6th lines are slightly more obscure.  This is a deeper level, it deals with ego and honesty.  When sparring we need to spend as much energy watching our own vulnerabilities and we do looking for them in our opponent.  We must be honest in assessing our performance.  Ego has no place in sparring, honesty must come first if we are to improve our skills.  Additionally, no one likes a braggart.  Hopefully that make sense and you will gain some new insights of your training.

There are many levels to this passage so I urge you to read this multiple times.

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