Home » Classics, Uncategorized

My Favorite Spiritual Teacher LAO TZU: The Depth & Simplicity of an Ancient Genius…

13 September 2010 3 Comments


A few days ago, my facebook friend Djehuty-Ma’at Ra put a status up asking: “Who is your favorite spiritual teacher and why???

good spiritual teachers for african americansAs usual, there were about 100+ in-depth comments, but my answer was “LAO TZU (for his depth & simplicity).”

In his major work, the Tao Te Ching, Lao Tzu breaks down how everything in the universe follows certain patterns that escape precise explanation – a “way” that you can never really strive to attain because it emerges naturally…

So one of his primary concepts is SIMPLICITY: that you empower yourself by removing complexity in all areas of your life (be it personal, social, mental, financial, etc.)

He also talks a lot about opposites: how what we think are opposites are really complementary halves that can’t even exist without the other (life/death, male/female, etc.).

good spiritual insight for african americans

Here’s some examples to give you an idea…

— 33 —
“Knowing others is intelligence;
Knowing yourself is true wisdom.
Mastering others is strength;
Mastering yourself is true power.

You realize you have enough,
And you’re already rich.
You stay in the center,
Embrace death with your heart,
And you will endure forever.”

— 63 —

the tao te ching signPractice non-action. Work without doing…
Magnify the small, increase the few.
See simplicity in the complicated.
Achieve greatness in little things.

In the universe, difficult things are done like they’re easy.
In the universe, great acts consists of small deeds…
(Likewise) The sage doesn’t attempt anything very big,
And thus achieves greatness.

Easy promises make for little trust.
Taking things lightly results in great difficulty.
Because the sage always confronts difficulties,
He never experiences them

— 76 —
“Men are born soft and supple;
Dead, they are stiff and hard.
Plants are born tender and pliant;
Dead, they are brittle and dry.

Thus whoever is stiff and inflexible
Is a disciple of death.
Whoever is soft and yielding
Is a disciple of life.

The hard and stiff will be broken.
The soft and supple will prevail…”

I know it’s kind of difficult to grasp what he’s saying sometimes, but if you really reflect on it, it eventually comes to you, and it when finally does, it’s PROFOUND…

This is actually where a lot of my concepts on productivity and self-discipline originally come from…see more science below.



  • Kazi said:

    TheTao is the superlative teaching of the age. It is a riddle wrapped in an enigma, wrapped in a cipher. Yet, it is clear as a cloudless day. You can not follow it, but you may surf it. You can not understand it, but it’s meaning is seen and heard everywhere. For it is the All Eye Seeing Way.

    Keep the goodies coming Bro. B+

  • Monique said:

    There is ONE main thing that I do not see and have not read in any of my exhaustive research of The Tao, and that is God, who is THE master of the earth, of which He created for our pleasure. He gave us life; eyes to see; ears to hear, nose to smell ALL the things you speak of.
    I truly do not see how you can leave Him out of the equasion. Should I research the Tao more? No, I need to spend my time in Gods Word – The Bible, which is His love letters to us and model as to how to live a life that is God-honoring.
    If you believe in creation you HAVE to believe in a Creator.
    One cannot live forever just by embracing death with their heart; it is by faith and repentence of sins by which we have the privilege to spend eternity with the Alpha & Omega, Jehova God, Eternal King, Heavnly Father, The Mighty One, Abba Daddy.

  • Bryan Ogilvie (author) said:

    @Kazi: No doubt brother…thanks

    @Monique: To each his (or her) own…

Leave your response!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.