How ancient Chinese wisdom can help us in this crisis
An ancient Chinese anecdote. Once upon a time, a man fell into a river. The river was ending into a large waterfall at some distance. The people who saw this mishap were sure that the man would not survive. But after some time, that man came back alive to their surprise. There was not even a scratch on his body. People asked him, ‘How did you survive ?’. He smiled and said, ‘I survived because I surrendered myself to the river. Rather than swimming against the flow, I let myself go with the flow. The flow of the river pushed me to a safe place on its own.’
This story is a metaphor. This Chinese anecdote teaches us to survive during the crisis. Life is very much similar to the flow of the river. It drags us to unexpected and unfamiliar circumstances. The point is to let ourselves go with the flow rather than trying to resist.
The great Chinese philosopher Lao-tzu wrote a book named ‘Tao te ching.’ We can find all the solutions in that book. It is a manual on ‘How to live life ?’. One of the wisdom out of that is ‘Wu-Wei.’
It means ‘Doing nothing.’ But it has a deeper meaning. It is an ‘effortless action’ or ‘Inaction.’ The Only way to survive is to surrender. It is wise not to fight against nature.
Most of the world’s misery arrives from two main conditions. Either resisting a change or wishing a change. The solution to both of these problems is one. Wu-Wei. Go with the flow. Do not resist. Do not fight.
Our existence and happiness depend on two main pillars, Acceptance and Submission. The world doesn’t move as per our wishes, but according to the laws of the universe. Change is only constant. Millions of years back when even the earth was not existing, that time also universal forces were in action. They are acting even now. That force is universal and omnipresent. Nature is far wiser than any of us. We got to believe in nature’s wisdom.
No matter how many advances we make, we can never win against the force of the universe. The only way to survive in this crisis is to surrender ourselves to the wisdom of nature.
Whether it is any sports or battlefield, an adventure of a risky operation, the only valuable advice given to everybody is to follow their instincts. ‘Go with your sixth sense.’ Nature is our guide. It will guide us to a safe and secure place. On the infinite timeline of the universe, we are less than a speck of dust. To let our lives flow and float as per the laws of the universe is the only way to move forward.
We are the children of this universe. It is trying to teach us something. We should listen to that. The best example of Wu-Wei is water. It can flow through the path of least resistance. It can mold itself in any shape or form. Despite that, water is one of the most powerful forces on earth. It can break a rock with its force and persistence. Submission is not a weakness. Those who are bold and fearless, only they can surrender. Those who have faith in nature, only they can follow Wu-Wei.
Flowing through existence is better than fighting for existence.