This one is still ringing inside me. I heard from some readers about their leadership experiences and another pointed me to The Tao. Sometimes I read a bit from the Tao Te Ching near the end of my day. Are you familiar with it? There’s a wonderful story about how it was written by Lao Tzu about the 4th century BCE. If you know the ying/yang symbol – that’s Taoism. Lots of flow from the centre of being. I know little about it, so feel out of my depth to even mention it here. With my reader’s reminder, I knew it was time to read more of it for he does speak of effortless leadership.
Last night I read that I wasn’t to change the world. What? That’s so against my nature. I want to rid the world of every evil. I want people to be different, to treat each other kindly and with true justice. What do you mean, I’m not to change the world? I’m a #1 on the enneagram. We are reformers, change artists. Give me anything – a house, a garden, an organization, a person and I will see how change might happen.
Could there be another way to live? One day when I was starting a new job, my husband told me that it wasn’t my job to change either the person who would be my senior priest or to change the community. I listened and thought that on one hand he was warning me but on the other hand he was missing something. Change is my middle name. I’m always changing myself and seeking a new way forward for any organization, community or person with whom I’m involved. My perspective is that there is always more to experience and if we stay put, we’ll miss the beauty of life.
Yet last night when I read, “Do you want to improve the world? I don’t think it can be done. The world is sacred. It can’t be improved. If you tamper with it, you’ll ruin it. If you treat it like an object, you’ll lose it. There is a time for being ahead, a time for being behind; a time for being in motion, a time for being at rest; a time for being vigorous, a time for being exhausted; a time for being safe, a time for being in danger. The Master sees things as they are, without trying to control them. She lets them go their own way, and resides at the center of the circle.”, I stopped. I sat still. Maybe there is another way to live.
Maybe this broken, hurting world is the way it is to be. Slowly, with the speed of a tortoise we’ve evolved to be able to communicate globally, irradicate some diseases, limit population growth, increase access to education and clean water – there is lots that could be added to the list of ‘good’ things we’ve done to make life easier on earth. However, we could all compile a list of wrongs still here, slavery, sex trafficking, child pornography, war, racism, gender inequality, ageism, consumerism, earth abuse – there’s lots to be added to this list too. but what if…our main purpose as human beings is not to eradicate all forms of systemic evil, but to be at the centre of the circle, to awaken spiritually so that no matter our situation we know we are loved and a child of God. Yes, some of us may be called from The Centre to make changes in the systemic problems, but that is not the main event. Living with the flow of Love, within Spirit energy is the main event. Maybe some of the hardship is what brings us to that awareness of our deep human need for spiritual connection.
Maybe I don’t have to change the world, or anyone in it. Much less effort in that approach to life. Maybe this Mystic in Motion can eventually be a Mystic in Flow. How about you? Change artist? Avoider? Flow? Activist?
love and prayers
Mystic in Motion (still)
Companion on the Way with Contemplative Fire
Society Member of Shalem Institute for Contemplative Living
Companion with The Rivendell Way