Under Heaven all can see beauty as beauty, only because there is
ugliness. All can know good as good only because there is evil
Being and nonbeing produce each other. The difficult is born in the
easy. Long is defined by short, the high by the low. Before and after
go along with each other
So the sage lives openly with apparent duality and paradoxical
unity. The sage can act without effort and teach without words.
Nurturing things without possessing them, he works, but not for
rewards; he competes, but not for results.
When the work is done, it is forgotten. That is why it lasts forever
There are two parts to this verse: It declares that there are dualities in life, a yin and yang type thing and then to accept and appreciate and let it be or “just be.” There are so many ways to interpret this verse and after reading it a few times, I see that we need these contrasts in order to know what we want and what we don’t want, which sounds very similar to what Abraham Hicks says. Without these contrasts, how could we enjoy or appreciate something that we consider beautiful without the “ugly” to contrast it? How can we fully appreciate pleasure without the pain in contrast? Without one, we cannot have the other.
Maybe we tend to label things and experiences too much. Are we too focussed on the negative and dwell on it? Do we become blind to things that are wrong because we don’t want to acknowledge that something is not “good”? Doe’s someone have to be right and does someone have to be wrong?
One of Wayne’s suggestions in living the second verse of the Tao Te Ching is to go about your day and try “.. noticing an opportunity to defend or explain yourself and choosing not to.” This was quite a challenge for me who used to love to debate or be the devil’s advocate. It also created someone arguments and tension among friends and family. So instead of argue a point I acted without effort and hopefully taught without words. Just like in Verse one, positive things have happened in practicing this “let it be” type of attitude. Do I do this all the time? No, but I’m getting better at it and I have found that my needing to be right has become less important.