Rules for Living
...is the main thing, as in the Greeks'
"Meden Agan" and Horace's "Quisquis auream mediocritatem
diligit..." Strive to have balance between:
- Teaching and Learning, like Chaucer's
"Oxford Cleric, still a student though, one who had taken logic
long ago...And gladly would he learn, and gladly teach," be willing
to share knowledge with others, and ready to learn from anyone, because
the sources of wisdom can be surprising.
- Talking and Listening - those who talk
all the time don't learn from others, or at least don't learn from those
who aren't as aggressively outgoing as they are. Quiet people are just
as worth listening to as noisy people, even though they don't get as
much of a chance to validate their ideas by discussing them with others.
Both talking and listening are necessary to making a real connection
with another person. Too little of either, and there's the risk of a
- Writing and Reading - you learn mostly
by reading, but also by writing. It forces you to think things through
and concretize your thoughts.
Be open with others, willing to reveal
things about yourself. This leaves you vulnerable, and the way to protect
yourself is the way you play Push Hands in Tai Ji Quan. You're
in close contact with your partner/opponent, so you can sense and deflect
Accept Love Where You Can Get It
It's easy to keep track of those you care
about, and how much. It's harder to be mindful of those who care about
you, but this love is a precious commodity, hard to obtain, not to be
lightly discarded or ignored.
Never walk backwards, if you're in a horror
You have several accounts in the world,
beside your bank account:
- Good Feeling: Think of the people who
care about you, and how much they care. Add up the parts, starting with
those who are closest to you and care the most, going on to friends
who care a medium amount, and acquaintances who care a bit. Add up all
this good feeling to get your account balance.
- Karma: This is the amount of good you've
done for others beyond the good they've done for you.
- Contribution: Add up what you've accomplished
to make the world a better place. You're ahead in the accounting if
this amount is greater than what the world at large has contributed
to make you what you are.
Copyright © 2001-2005 by Dean Wallraff.
All rights reserved.