Daily Tao / 235 – Stress


Job pressures are overwhelming.
Responsibilities are heavy.
When I close my eyes,
The demands of others are all I see.

Sometimes responsibilities can become so great that you cannot keep your mental equilibrium. Your attention is scattered. Feelings of frustration lead to tremendous unhappiness. Your insides ache. You don’t get enough sleep, you eat poorly, and you quarrel with others.

The sages may breezily pronounce all of this to be the folly of humanity. They are undoubtedly right, but the words of the sages are too lofty when we are scrounging in the dust for our survival. Many of us must face these pressures, at least for the moment. Even if we would like a way out of this madness, we will not be able to forsake society all at once.

When one is under stress, awareness of Tao is impossible. If you are fighting on the battlefield, or fighting in the office, or fighting in your home, or fighting in your mind, there is no such thing as being with Tao. If you are involved in this type of life, then you must content yourself to face your problems bravely — until you can do nothing other than renounce it.

Every moment that you are with your problems, you are not with Tao. The best you can do is to remember that our stress is not absolute reality.