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WORLDVIEW: WHEN RADICAL sociologist Naomi Klein addressed the Occupy Wall Street camp in Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan last week, she echoed in a rhetorical question what many have asked of Ireland's passivity in the face of the recent economic crisis. The baffled TV pundits ask why they are protesting, she said. “Meanwhile, the rest of the world asks: ‘What took you so long?'”
Now the tented camps, inspired by movements in places like Argentina, Egypt's Tahrir Square, Madrid's Puerta del Sol, and Athens, have sprung up in public spaces in as many as 1,000 cities around the world, including Dublin . The young self-described “99 percenters” are protesting mainly against the banks and the financial system, which they hold responsible for the crisis; against poverty and inequality; and against the powerlessness felt by the majority of society.
Even when he seems to act in a manner kind or benevolent, the wise one is not acting with such intent. For, in conscious matters such as these, he is amoral and indifferent.
The follower retains tranquility, and is not by speech or thought disturbed, and even less by action which is contrived. His actions are spontaneous, as are his deeds towards his fellow men. By this means he is empty of desire, and so his energy is not drained from him because of useless, unreasoned emotions.
The Force of Life acts without intent, and cannot be described as acting with benevolence or malevolence to any thing. In this respect, The Way is just the same, though in reality it should be said that nature follows the rule of The Way, or is it that The Way follows the rule of that which is natural? Either way, the results are the same.
When tempered beyond its natural state, the finest blade will lose its edge. Even the hardest tempered sword, against water, is of no avail. It will shatter if struck against a rock. When untangled by its cutting edge, a cord lies in little pieces, rendering it useless.
Just as the finest sword maker tempers the finest blade not only with fire but with his experience, so the wise one, with wisdom, tempers the intellect. With patience, tangled cord may be undone, and problems which seem insoluble, resolved.
It is for reasons such as these that an administration which is charitable in intent, remains in harmony with the welfare of those it serves. It does not encourage status and titles to be sought, nor encourage rivalries. Ensuring a sufficiency for all, helps in reducing discontent. Administrators who are wise do not seek honours for themselves, or act with false pride towards the ones they serve.
Those who are jealous of the skills or things that are possessed by others, themselves become ruled, and so destroyed by their envy. Satisfied with his possessions, the wise one eliminates the need to steal; at one with The All, he remains free of envy. By being supple, he does not break, and retains his energy.
By retaining his humility, the talented person who is also wise reduces rivalry. The person who possesses many things but does not boast of his possessions, reduces temptation and envy, and so reduces the prospect of theft.
Through his experience, the follower becomes aware that all things change, so that he who leads might also follow an unseen path. So, in his wisdom, he may neither lead nor follow. That which he does is neither big nor small. It is without negative intent; it is neither difficult, nor is it easy. He completes his task, and when his task is completed, he then lets go of it. He seeks no credit, therefore he cannot be discredited. Thus, his teaching lasts for ever, and he is held in high esteem; which he seeks not.
In comparison, the wise one, in harmony with The Way, needs no comparisons, and when he makes them, he knows that comparisons are judgments, and just as relative to he who makes them. They then become to the situation as they are to that on which the judgement has been made.
A thing may seem long by comparison with that which is comparatively short. One thing is high because another thing stands low against it; only when sound ceases is quietness known, and that which leads, is seen to lead only because of being followed.