Sunday, December 21, 2008

Quote du jour/Lao Tzu



Time is a created thing.
To say, 'I don't have time,' is like saying, 'I don't want to.'
Lao Tzu

11 comments:

  1. I agree that time is a created thing - but I have to ponder the last part of what he says.
    Margaretha

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  2. Yes, Margaretha, I'm pondering it as well. It may be that we do have choices. "I don't have time to read because I 'must' do such and such" When we could say, "I don't want to do such and such, I'm going to read!"

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  3. I agree - time IS about choices. Some may be beyond our control... but this seems like a good time of year to re-evaluate those choices we make that are not.

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  4. I agree - we MAKE time for the things that are truly important. If we don't think something is important, then "we don't have time" for it.

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  5. JoAnn, I thought this was most apropos for the season. You're right - some are out of our control, but a lot are real choices we make.
    Heather, I thought of you when I posted this. I remember a great post you wrote about time for reading.

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  6. I don't quite agree with what is said here. It isn't as easy as "if you want to do something you can do it". I don't have time to do a lot of things I REALLY want to do because I have to rest much more than I want. It is a myth that everybody can get or become anything - a myth that can be very hard for the underprivileged to meet every time they manage to get the nose over the surface. A way to keep some people quite and only let the fit and strong climb the ladder.
    Margaretha

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  7. Em, I'd bet my boots that he meant it more as small things - the everyday choices we make. Like, I don't have time to pick flowers because I 'must' vacuum the house. You hear people say all the time that they 'don't have time' for something when really what they mean is they have chosen to do something else. We all have real reasons why we cannot do something but that's different from the choices we make about the things we can.

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  8. I agree with Margaretha, as I am in a similar position, but I like your response.
    Taoism is valuable to make us pause and relax, stop pushing against everything, but as you say, sometimes there is no choice, and we have to either 'spin', the given situation in our minds if it is possible, or accept it.
    The A.A prayer says something like 'to change the things we can, accept what we can't, and the wisdom to know the difference'. Wise words.

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  9. Anonymous (CB?) I thought of the Serenity Prayer too!

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  10. This quotation and the discussion remind me of an anecdote from the life of one of my favourite writers - Thomas Merton. There was a fire in the woods at his monastery and Merton was leading the novices in beating out the flames when the Angelus bell rang. He called on the men to stop to pray. One novice said "There is no time to pray" and Merton replied "There is no TIME to pray."

    Like you, Nan, I think the choices referred to are about the priorities we make. (I think I would find it hard to choose kneeling rather than fire-beating, though!)

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  11. monix, I must read Merton. I keep seeing references to him on blogs, and have liked everything I've read. Thanks.

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