?One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.? (Friedrich Nietzsche)
Above is a symbol that we are all familiar with and that?s known as Tao which means one of two things depending on the translation: It either means ?The Way? or it means ?Meaning.? So, to live in Tao is to live in meaning.
This symbol is a symbol of the totality of the world. Why is that? It?s because the dark side of the Tao symbol is Chaos and the white side of the Tao symbol is Order. It?s the split between order and chaos and the mutual coexistence that makes the world.
There is a black dot within order because anything orderly can immediately be turned into chaos more or less unpredictably and sometimes by your own efforts.
There is a white dot within chaos because anything chaotic can immediately be turned into order by your own efforts.
Where does the individual who lives in Tao place themselves?
The individual who lives in Tao lives on the line that separates order and chaos with one foot in chaos and one foot in order. The reason for that is because that?s where all the interesting things are happening and where the information is flowing.
If an individual is all in order, they predict everything and become bored by security. It?s not just boring, but it defines boring because there is no new information happening within order.
If an individual is all in chaos then they are so overwhelmed with new information that they can?t do anything with it.
You want to be straight in the middle; on the middle path of both chaos and order.
What does the middle path (Tao) look like?
If you?re living in Tao then you?re doing this:
- Firstly, you?re always paying attention to anomalous information
- Secondly, you?re allowing that anomalous information to destabilize the structure of your life when it?s necessary which is the creation of chaos.
- Thirdly, you?re orienting your life in a way so that you?re creating order out of chaos.
- Fourthly, you repeat the whole process all over again on an even more improved and bigger scale then before.
The trick is within the balance of chaos and order. Too much novelty, everything degenerates. Too much order, everything petrifies. You want to be right on the proper edge and the way that you can tell on the edge is when you?re interested in something. The sign post that tells you that you are living in Tao is when you?re interested.
If you?re completely in chaos then you?re terrified.
If you?re completely in order then you?re bored.
By being interested and in Tao, that means that your brain is on in an optimal manner because your sensory systems are properly heightened as a result of being a little bit anxious and you?re doing a lot of exploration which is pleasurable to human beings.
Is Tao like the flow state then?
The problem with things like flow is that new age philosophy in general is always talking about following your happiness. Following your happiness is NOT right in this context of getting to the middle point of chaos and order because in order to get to that middle point, you must look at things that you hate and don?t want to face.
This is a major problem with new age philosophy because it?s the anomaly that you have to face. The motivational significance of an anomaly is terror. Otherwise, people would be in flow all the time and that?s not the case.
There is a place for following your happiness but constantly following your happiness is not what you want. This type of philosophy only leads down a road of resentment, bitterness and a lack of personal growth.
You want to face the things that you fear and fight those dragons because dragons are always hoarding the gold. The gold represents your treasure in the context of life, whatever form that may take.
?We adore chaos because we love to produce order.? (M. C. Escher)
Your nervous system is adapted to exist on the edge between order and chaos. Chaos is where things are so complex that you can?t handle it and order is where things are so rigid that it?s too restrictive. In between that is a place that?s meaningful; where you?re partly stabilized and partly curious.
Within this middle ground is where you?re operating in a manner that increases your scope of knowledge so that you?re inquiring and growing. At the same time, you?re stabilizing and renewing you, your family, society, nature, now, next week, and next year. When you have a feeling of meaning then you know you?re at that place.
Here?s another way to look at order and chaos:
Order is the place you are when what you do works
Chaos is the place you are when what you do doesn?t work
This philosophy of order and chaos is so deeply ingrained within our psyche and society, if not our evolutionary history.
Both extremes of chaos and order become a personal hell for any individual who is stuck within either of them. No matter where you go, order and chaos will be there and your job is to balance the two properly.
Living A Proper Life
Life is suffering and suffering can make you resentful, murderous and genocidal if you take it far enough. So, you need an antidote to suffering.
One common idea that many people have is that they could build walls of luxury around yourself and that will protect them from suffering but that?s exactly wrong because that isn?t going to work. You will still experience suffering just like everyone else.
Another common idea that many people have is that they could build a delusion to live under but that doesn?t work to alleviate suffering either.
Well, what is there that can help you fight against suffering? The answer is very simply the truth. The truth is the antidote to suffering and the reason for that is because the truth put?s reality behind you so that you could face the reality that is coming straight at you without becoming weak, degenerating, becoming resentful and wishing for the destruction of being. The final hell is your soul wishing for the destruction of everything because it?s too painful and you?re too bitter which happens to people all the time.
What can we do to start to reach the path of Tao and live a proper life?
- Tell The Truth ? Face the truth and bear the discomfort that comes with it.
- Evaluate Your Life ? Evaluate where you are in your life right now and observe which parts of your life are chaotic and which parts are orderly. Make a conscious effort to balance these two forces. Whatever areas that are too chaotic need some order injected into them and vice versa.
- Face Your Problems ? Do the things that you know you need to do to make yourself into a more evolved human being. Those fears are dragons that must be face and if you face those dragons, there will be treasure waiting for you on the other side.
prolonged suffering leads to a dysfunctional system and environment. It creates school shootings, genocide and just overall evil in the world. The line between good and evil is a line that runs through the heart of every human being and therefore it makes sense to alleviate that suffering and avoid evil through the psychological and physical growth of your being.