Friday, March 13, 2009

No action is for nothing

Following up my post The Power of Non-action, where we saw that the less an action is selfish, the more power it has, here is another quote from the commentary of Tao Te King – Livre du Tao et de sa Vertu (Éditions Dervy). This quote, which I find delivers its message with a great poetic power, underscores the far-reaching effects of all our actions, even selfish ones. All the more reason to beware. (Translated from the French by me.) As you read it, remember the importance of sincerity.

What I do in secret, me, a tiny being lost in the world, I imagine does not affect anyone else; that what I do stays between me and me; that I can bury it, if I wish, in the silence of an abolished past. Not at all. The past is not inert. The past is a life that continues into the present. The past is a blade whose tip is the present, and the tip of the blade, thrust forward by the momentum of what has been, penetrates into the future to determine what shall be.
Every being, at every moment, acts in a way that saves him or loses him. Thus, every being, at every moment, acts in a way that saves or loses his circle, his family, his profession, his city, the civilisation around him, to a degree that none can know precisely and which is all the more worrisome to a good conscience.
If one thing is certain today, it is the universal solidarity of things and beings in all domains and in all ways. R. P. Sertillanges, Voix françaises, 24 January 1941

We find the same ideas expressed in this quote, from the same book, except the author goes further than mere actions and includes words and even thoughts as having an impact on the outside world:

Nothing is limited in nature; all worlds penetrate each other and all beings are interconnected: each of our words goes much further than the walls of the room where we pronounce them but which seems however to stop them; each of our thoughts, even secret, can be the cause of many things which will forever remain unknown to us. Dr. Marc Haven, Chiromancie dans ‘La Paix Universelle’, No. du 15 juillet 1906

As I was thinking about and writing this post, I stumbled upon (my, my isn’t that a coincidence?) this interesting video Consciousness drives the universe. The video makes the case for a holographic universe, which would explain the interconnectedness of everything.
I remember reading about the split personality of light, how when scientists looked for particles they found particles and when they looked for waves they found waves. What they saw depended on what they were looking for. Do we create reality? This video draws some far-reaching conclusions from there, but I throw it out for your own judgment. One thing I feel: what the scientists are discovering, the sages already knew a long time ago.

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Discover The Tale of Genji, the 11th Century classic of Japan (click image)

Discover The Tale of Genji, the 11th Century classic of Japan (click image)
Kiyomizudera Temple has a large veranda looking out over Kyoto and beyond