What I Learned from the School of Taoism

1.       A sparrow cannot understand the ambition of a swan.

We should make great ambitions rather than haggle over personal gains and losses, otherwise we’re doomed to be ‘penny wise and pound foolish’.

2.       Never make benefaction for compliment.

When we help others for kudos, we’ve 2 options: to work wholeheartedly or to act as a hypocrite. This will lead to our downfall from hero to zero, and that may drive us to exhaustion. Hence, it’s more sensible to make benefaction easily and carelessly.

3.       Restrain our greed and live a simple life.

Abysmal is greed! It’ll capture our heart and bring about our corruption gradually. Only by restraining our greed and doing things justice can we live a simple life.

4.       The friendship between men of virtue is light like water, yet affectionate; the friendship between men without virtue is sweet like wine, yet easily broken.

Let there be no purpose in friendship save the deepening of the spirit.

5.       All things are created equal.

All things, with their respective uses and performances, can be given full play to in appropriate ambiences and on suitable occasions. In light of this, we cannot judge things in terms of nobleness or humbleness. As to human beings, we should devote ourselves to the most befitting jobs so as to make the most of our talents.

6.       Every coin has 2 sides.

Never be contented with scratching the surface in analyzing problems, but, with our penetrating eyes, get to the bottom. If not, don’t hold our breath to find solutions. Bright future may look misty, and smooth road to success will seem winding, thus we should never fear the wind and rain of our life; in face of difficulties and setbacks we should go ahead with high spirits. On the other hand, we should keep cool on the verge of success. Think twice, and provide against latent perils. Remember: he who laughs last laughs longest.

7.       Act at right time and right place.

Be agile enough to adapt ourselves to changing conditions.

8.       Developing in the opposite is the logic of the Way.

Apprehend the importance of propriety, otherwise things will go contrary to our wishes.

9.       Effeminacy is superior to fortitude.

It’s imperative for us to be amicable and discreet at our heyday, lest others regard us as a threat. By bullying we may diminish, by respecting we may gain.

10.   United, we stand.

We can’t make brilliant exploits save when we cooperate with one another. And we can’t cooperate with one another save when we’re in humility.

11.   A little leak will sink a great ship.

We should nip the faults in the bud.

12.   Don’t trouble trouble until trouble troubles us.

Comply with the will of the majority. Don’t make unwarranted presumption of others’ intention.

13.   Think twice in making a commitment.

Acceding to doing a favor requires our patience, our effort and apropos conditions. Our commitment may turn bandy words as one of these 3 prerequisites cannot be achieved.

14.   Rather aware of than denial of our ignorance.

We should face up to our ignorance, and seek the key of knowledge through trial and error.


About Niccolo Paganini

Diabolus in Musica


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