"Success is as dangerous as failure.

Hope is as hollow as fear.

What does it mean, that

success is as dangerous as failure?

Whether you go up the ladder

or down it, your position is shaky.

When you stand

with your two feet on the ground,

you will always keep your balance.

What does it mean, that

hope is as hollow as fear?

Hope and fear are both phantoms

that arise from thinking of the self.

When we don't see the self as self,

what do we have to fear?

See the world as yourself.

Have faith in the way things are.

Love the world as yourself;

then you can care for all things"

~ Lao Tzu

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“Last night I lost the world, and gained the universe.”
C. JoyBell C.

"The Tao is infinite, eternal.

Why is it eternal?

It was never born,

thus it can never die.

Why is it infinite?

It has no desires for itself;

thus, it is present for all things."

~ Lao Tzu

I have the feeling I need to stop overthinking everything.

I know that feeling and get that feeling often Linda.

"The Valley Spirit never dies
It is named the Mysterious Female.
And the doorway of the Mysterious Female
Is the base from which Heaven and Earth sprang.
It is there within us all the while.
Draw upon it as you will, it never runs dry."
 Tao Te Ching, Chapter VI, Translated by Arthur Waley


"The Tao is called the Great Mother
empty yet inexhaustible,
it gives birth to infinite worlds.

It is always present within you.
You can use it any way you want. 
-  Translated by Stephen Mitchell, Chapter 6

"The life-force of the valley never dies--
This is called the dark female.
The gateway of the dark female--
This is called the root of the world.
Wispy and delicate, it only seems to be there,
Yet its productivity is bottomless."
-   Dao De Jing, #6, Translated by Roger T. Ames and David L. Hall  

the process of transformation through internal alchemy, or the return to the Tao.  The empty circle at the bottom is the Mysterious Gate [Mysterious Entrance] or the Valley Spirit.  Gate means "opening," and Valley referes to "Emptiness" or "Void."  On the physical level the Valley Spirit lies in the Life Gate (ming-men) on the spinal column (an area on the spine between the kidneys).  The ming-men controls movement of generative energy in the lower tan-t'ien (the area near the navel).  On the spiritual level, the Valley Spirit is consciousness emptied of sensations, emotions, and thoughts.

"Cultivating Stillness:  A Taoist Manual for Transforming Body and Mind, p. xvii
     Translated by Eva Wong, 1992.  

"The spirit of the valley – a powerful symbol of the female principle – is eternal. It has always been there and will always be. We can call it the mystical female, or the sacred feminine.  The sacred feminine is the universal source of life. Therefore, the doorway to the essence of the mystical female is what we can call the root, origin, or genesis of the entire world. This essence – life itself – is a continuous flow. We tend to take it for granted and not pay attention to it, but it is always there. And it does not matter how much it is utilized – the power of life is literally inexhaustible."
-   Derek Lin, Tao Te Ching, p. 12.



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