Against preparation

The idea of preparation requires two insurmountable problems: a mythical standard (i.e. a teleological goal) and the assumption that performing an action in one context is the same as performing it in a new one. Better to abandon the idea altogether and simply perform.

On sagehood

Sages are sages simply because of the application of the principles of the I Ching. Application of the I Ching is accomplished simply by openness and tranquility. When open, one takes in all; when tranquil, one perceives all. When open, one can accept things; when tranquil, one can respond to situations. If openness and tranquility are continued for a long time, one becomes spiritually illumined.

Book of Balance and Harmony

On myth

When I was young, I could not tell myth from reality. As an adult, I devoted myself to finding truth, both scientifically and philosophically. Now, as an old man, I return to myth. I lament every myth not recorded throughout history, for it is here that we are closest to truth. Whether it is a myth one resonates with or not does not matter, each has something vital to teach us about reality.

Bearing firewood to market in the morning

Bringing wine back at sunset

Where is my home?

It is in the green woods through the clouds.

Xuxuanping

On superlatives

Good, better, best–language deceives us at every turn. Does the universe see any state in this way? Is this constellation better than that? Is the explosion of a supernova bad in that it’s the last evolutionary stage of its progenitor, or good in that its the birth of a black hole?