Posted on August 24, 2013 at 9:00 PM
Lao Tzu (also known as Laozi) was a philosopher of ancient China. He is known as the reputed author of the Tao Te Ching and the founder of Taoism.
Lao Tzu's work is important for mankind, especially in a modern world distracted by technology and focused on what seem to be constant, sudden, and severe changes.
His words serve as a reminder of the importance of stillness, openness, and discovering buried yet central parts of ourselves.
Lao Tzu lived around 90 years and in fact he did nothing except live.
He lived totally.
Many times his disciples asked him to write, but he always said: The Tao that can be told is not the real Tao, the truth that can be told becomes untrue immediately.
So he would not say anything; he had not write anything.
At the age of ninety, he took leave of his disciples and start moving towards the Himalaya.
The disciples followed him for a few hundred miles, but by and by Lao Tzu persuaded them to go back.
Then alone he was crossing the border, and the guard on the border imprisoned him.
The guard was also a disciple. And the guard said: "Unless you write a book, I am not going to allow you to move beyond the border.
This much you must do for humanity. Write a book.
That is the debt you have to pay, otherwise I won't allow you to cross." So for three days Lao Tzu was imprisoned by his own disciple.
He was forced – and that's how this small book, the book of Lao Tzu, TAO TE CHING, was born.
He had to write it, because the disciple wouldn't allow him to cross. And he was the guard and he had the authority, he could create trouble, so Lao Tzu had to write the book. In three days he finished it.
This is the first sentence of the book: "THE TAO THAT CAN BE TOLD OF IS NOT THE ABSOLUTE TAO."
THIS IS THE FIRST THING he said: that whatsoever can be said cannot be true.
This is the introduction in the book.
It simply makes you alert: now words will be following, don't become a victim of the words. Remember the wordless. Remember that which cannot be communicated through language, through words.
Lao Tzu goes deeper like nobody has ever gone.
If you can understand Lao Tzu, you can open all the locks for all the problems that exist in your life
This old guy is beautiful – not against ugliness; this old guy is wise – not against stupidity; this old guy is enlightened – not against unenlightenment or unenlightened persons. This old guy is total. And if you can understand him, nothing is left to be understood.
Lao Tzu accepts this world and the other, and he accepts totally.
He is not bothered about the otherworld; he knows that the other is going to grow out of this – that is going to grow out of this, so why bother about it?
Live this as beautifully as possible, as totally as possible, and the other will come out of it naturally. It is going to be a natural growth.
Lao Tzu has a logic altogether different from our mind.
He says: Be the last.
Move in the world as if you are not.
Don't try to be the first, otherwise you will be thrown. Don't be competitive, don't try to prove your worth. There is no need. Remain useless and enjoy.
Of course he sounds impractical.
But if we try to understand him we will find that he is most practical on a deeper layer, in the depth – because life is to enjoy and celebrate, life is not to become a utility.
Life is more like poetry than like a commodity in the market; it should be like poetry, a song, a dance, a flower by the side of the road, flowering for nobody in particular, sending its fragrance to the winds, without any address, being nobody in particular, just enjoying itself, being itself.
Lao Tzu says: If you try to be very clever, if you try to be very useful, you will be used.
If you try to be very practical, somewhere or other you will be harnessed, because the world cannot leave the practical man alone.
Lao Tzu says: Drop all these ideas. If you want to be a poem, an ecstasy, then forget about utility. You remain true to yourself. Be yourself.
Lao Tzu says: Be yourself and do your thing and don't bother about anything else.
You are not here to be sold. So don't think of utility, just think of your bliss. Be blissful, and if something flows out of your bliss it is okay – share it. But don't force yourself just to be a utility.
Lao Tzu's world is not of logic but analogy.
Logic is apparent, direct – If you want to understand Lao Tzu that old way won't help.
You will have to put your logic aside because he is not chasing you as a logician, he is not arguing against you – if you argue against him, it will be ridiculous because he has not argued at all. He simply gives an analogy.
So Lao Tzu is just a spokesman of life.
If life is absurd, Lao Tzu is absurd; if life has an absurd logic to it, Lao Tzu has the same logic to it. Lao Tzu simply reflects life.
He doesn't add anything to it, he doesn't choose out of it; he simply accepts whatsoever it is.
His Quotes are full of wisdom and still it's contemporary.
His wisdom can be helpful to all of us in various phases and areas of our life, whether one is student or a CEO of a multinational corporation. His quotes are relevant in this modern era because we have everything, but we are not at peace with ourselves and with others.
This world is a beautiful place and we all can make our world even more beautiful by applying Lao Tzu's wisdom in our daily life. We all need little more love, compassion and understanding in our life to enjoy the beauty around us.
We really need to live our life not just passing the days in pursuit of material things which is endless thirst and never going to fulfill our within.
Find below some of his best quotes: