It is not a religion, nor a philosophy. It is a way of life. It is a river. It is the natural order of things. It is a force that flows through every living and sentient object, as well as through the entire universe. When it is in balance it is possible to find perfect happiness.
I remember once I was looking in the open air and one of those glorious little thistledown things came and I picked it up like that and brought it down and it looked as if it was struggling to get away just as if you caught an insect by one legs like a Daddy Longlegs or something of that kind.
It seemed to be struggling to get away and I first I thought: ‘Well it’s not doing that. That’s just the wind blowing.” Then I thought again: ‘Really. Only the wind blowing.’ Surely it is the structure of this thing which in cooperation with the existence of wind enables it to move like an animal but using the winds effort not its own.
It is more intelligent being than an insect in a way because an insect uses effort like a person who rows a boat uses effort but the man who puts up a sail. He’s using magic. He lets nature do it for him with the intelligence to use a sail, you see. So in just this way there’s the meaning of death is that kind of intelligence which without you’re using very much effort gets everything to cooperate with you.
And that is the most highly skillful art of all. That is Daoism in perfection.
You, for example, never force other people to agree with you. But you give them the notion that the idea you wanted them to have was their own. This is a feminine art preeminent.
A woman who really wants the lover does not refute him because then most men feel that she’s aggressive. And if she’s aggressive she obviously is a woman who has had difficulty in finding lovers and therefore there must be some undesirably secret thing about her.
But if she, as it were, makes a void then and was slightly difficult to get then people get excited they know she’s a highly prized object and so they pursue. Same way when you want to teach a baby to swim.
You clear thing you can do is to put the baby in the water and then move backwards in the water and create a vacuum and just pulls the baby along it helps it to learn the feel of the water and how to swim. It’s the same principle.
In just the same way, for example, you don’t have to attend, unless you’re sick, to the government of your own body. It happens automatically.