Words of Lao zi - Chapter 13: (my interpretation)
– People are a mixture of pleasure and anxiety. Every time someone applause or insult, people react so well to it, it’s almost amusing. They react so greatly as if they have a fatal illness. Why do people react so much towards other’s opinion? That is because they think being approved is a good thing and being criticized is a bad thing. And every time people react to your action, you are either overly pleased or in anxiety. Why do people worry so much to the degree of life or death? You are able to worry about it because you are alive. If you are consciously aware that one day you will be gone, you will not be bothered by other people’s opinion. Therefore, a governor who takes care of his own health rather than people’s criticism would be able to stabilize a nation. A man who could care for his own health of mind and body is able to see the truth in caring for the nation.
Original words of Lao zi. “寵辱若驚。貴大患若身。何謂寵辱若驚。寵爲上、辱爲下。得之若驚、失之若驚。 是謂寵辱若驚。何謂貴大患若身。吾所以有大患者、爲吾有身。及吾無身、吾有何患。 故貴以身爲天下、若可托天下。愛以身爲天下、若可寄天下。”
（my thoughts）This was another eye-opening impressive words of Lao zi. I often hear from young politicians saying, “I will die for this country. I will work hard to the bone to make the changes.” However, Lao zi is saying, “If you cannot take care of yourself, how could you take care of a nation? If you cannot work on the small scale, could you really work on the large scale? Could he truly care for the health and wealth of all the people?” Looking at the CEOs of companies that are successful in a long-term, they seem to be a wife and family lover. Those who have numerous lovers don’t last so long. A man who could love one woman for a long time, is a man with tolerance and devotion. He is a man with good will. These qualities are reflected on his work. A man who cannot stick to one love and keep changing partners is a man with a lack of perseverance and mercy. He will not be a good leader for the company. He will also be exchanged eventually by the society. A man who would claim that he would sacrifice his life for the society is a man who is worried about critisicsm. Those who worry a lot about criticisms are always saying things trying to please people. And it is a false statement. He is not being truthful to himself.
Lao zi says in order to see through the truth,
1) See if he worries about how people judge him.
2) See if he is taking care of his own health and caring about his wife and family.
In other words, no matter what other people say, if he keeps his imposing presence, also looks healthy and takes good care of people around him, he will be the right man to entrust as a leader for the nation.
I would say that Lao zi has a very good point. This applies not only to politicians and CEOs but also to religious gurus and spiritual leaders. Those whose private lives are unstable are no real leaders. There are too many of them who are into lust and money-making.
In truth, he who cannot take care of his own ancestors, family and his own innate god (good will) cannot really help others. Don’t be fooled by one’s artificial performance. Look at the attitudes towards his daily life.
(Disaster awareness) The red line is continuing small earthquakes. Let’s be watchful.
Thank you for letting us live