The more I read of the Tao, the more amazed I become. Aphorisms so simple and logical that when applied to life, can solve the most difficult of situations!
When iron is smelted, it still remains iron.
When in doubt, sweep.
The trials of life are applied in the furnace of life: I am still the same even as I melt into your surroundings. Outside forces will always act up on me, and yet, I remain my Self. I must respond to all of life's pressure, melting and cooling, but I still be my Self. Money, friends, lovers, houses, cars, all change, and here I am, the same Self. In all of that, I must find level --the middle point. As the heat of strain or change is applied, I melt from solid to liquid. In that process, liquid seeks a level point. As the heat of change subsides, I reform into a solid, strong mass, again, seeking uniformity.
Sweeping makes sense, too. It is a meditative action, like washing the dishes, or doing some repetitive chore that takes little effort or concentration, yet is magically soothing to mind and body. Like walking. It is an answer to life's struggles, just like the iron melting, above. (Well, beyond the simple rule of don't struggle!) Financial burdens, family discord, confusion...the answer to all is "sweep". It's so simple it's almost too difficult to grasp and yet, not.
Both of these signal me to "sweep" my own house as I come across challenges at work that I currently face, and that the other option is to allow outside forces to act, but remain my calm self and go with the flow. Allow myself to melt in the heat and reform in coolness--no struggle. No effort. Wu Wei. Do Nothing. Do Everything.
If I had been taught lessons like these growing up, instead of about sin, guilt, expectations, material striving, life would have been so much easier! But I am grateful to learn know, because perhaps, I can apply it wisely.
What a great knowledge to take with me through the day!