favor and disgrace are equally problematic

Favor

and disgrace are

equally problematic. Hope

and fear are phantoms

of the body.

 

What

does it mean that

“favor and disgrace are

equally problematic”? Favor

lifts you up; disgrace knocks you down.

Either one depends on the opinions

of others and causes you to

depart from your

center.

 

What

does it mean that

“hope and fear are phantoms

of the body”? When you regard your

body as your self, hope and fear have real

power over you. If you abandon the

notion of body as self, hope

and fear cannot

touch you.

 

Know

the universe as

your self, and you can live

absolutely anywhere in comfort.

Love the world as your self,

and you’ll be able

to care for it

properly.

 

from The Tao te Ching of Lao Tzu,

Chapter 13

 

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