"Stories" from the Collective (YOU)

Lao Tse Quotes

by Filo Ianni
(W Yorkshire, UK)

Weekly Wonder Online: 25

Lao Tse wonders...

"The Way is shaped by use, But then the shape is lost. Do not hold fast to shapes But let sensation flow into the world, As a river courses down to the sea."

Listen to Filo's thoughts about Lao Tse's (aka Lao Tzu or Lao Tsu) inspirational quote in the video below. You'll also discover a bit more about a favourite part of West Yorkshire, this time the canal near Sowerby Bridge, in West Yorkshire.

NOTE: Looking for 2015/16 version - click here!

What Filo Ianni Wonders...

(NOTE: Yes, I wrote any captions you see in this video. It's called self-deprecation, and it's mostly a healthy thing (I think!).)

Firstly, Filo is a close friend of mine. And she happens to be a big fan of the Tao Te Ching (or Dao De Djing), and the wisdom of 'flow' that this ancient classic works suggests.

So when I asked her to contribute an inspirational quote for an edition of The Weekly Wonder it was a quote by Lao Tsu that came to mind for her.

I'm not going to comment on what Filo says about this quotation (but I do encourage you to comment below!) Instead, I will write my own thoughts on Lao Tsu's quotation right after I share with you a link to Filo's excellent (and fairly new) blog called about flow called... All Things Flow (you should check it out!).

Okay, now I've read and enjoyed the Tao Te Ching (and thus these words of Lao Tse) and I found it to have a poetic simplicity, a kind of mathematical elegance that even though I didn't quite understand all that I read I knew it to be true nevertheless.

And I think this is how I feel when I look at this quote by Lao Tse.

So how you do things is... 'how you do things', via habits formed over time. But habits - habitual behaviour, reflex feelings - can often stop you from trying out new things, or doing things in different, better ways.

And the same goes for relationships and friendships. They often start out taking a certain form - the intensity of new love, for example - but then evolve and mature and change. And on and on it goes.

But if we hold too closely to a form (or an idea of a form) that we particularly like?...

Well there lies the path of 'non flow', of resistance to change, of pain and suffering!


Hmm, as I said above there is (to me) a mathematical simplicity to Lao Tsu's words of truth. He seems to me to be describing the motion of the flower, as the petals begin to bloom then glow then fall away over time, all as it sways with the wind first one way then another.


Hmm, these are my slightly awkward thoughts about Lao Tse's inspirational quote, and you've listened to Filo's interesting reflections too, but I'd love to hear what you think now, I really would.

Yes, that's right, I'd love to hear your wisdom, your thoughts, regarding this Lao Tsu quote! :-)

Thank you for reading and watching, and thanks to Filo for sharing her wisdom too

PS And here are three more free inspirational quotes from Lao Tsu

"The more laws and order are made prominent, the more thieves and robbers there will be."

"By letting it go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try and try. The world is beyond the winning."

"Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don't resist them-that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in wh atever way they like."

PPS Now please comment, please have your say - thanks.

PPPS And here's a reminder of Filo's thought-provoking and often playful blog called All Things Flow

Comments for Lao Tse Quotes

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Jan 17, 2011
Shape shifting
by: Anonymous

...You might like to know that just after that video I turned into a frog, then a tree and then into one of the ducks floating on the canal, that's why I suddenly disappeared from the screen - scary! That'll teach me to make wishes I haven't really thought through, lol!

No, really, I'm fine, although a few shape shifting moments have happened since, but the...flow in me is still here to tell the story :-)

Thanks Steve, for hosting me, it was fun and inspiring.

Filo x

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