But if the fundamental understanding of life is missing, said in another way, if life is fundamentally misunderstood, then that quote is misunderstood.
We, humans, have that love is something you feel for another person. Or for ice cream... more often, lol.
But what if the love Lao Tsu is talking about (I don't know, he died too long ago) is something entirely different?
What is love?
What if love is simply following the dictates of Life...? Life wants more life. Life wants more abundant life.
What if the wolf mommy protects her young not because of her love of her offspring, but because Life wants more life, and therefore you protect your young?
We humans have cut our ties to Life, and make up our own rules, about everything. What is good, what is bad, what is life, and how things work.
Then some individuals come around and start teaching you to stop being so goddamn smart, too smart for your own good, and just follow Life... And there was plenty of life before humans, plenty. And even since humans, though we do everything in our power to destroy that all.
Back to Eden
I watched a documentary on Monday. It's called "Back to Eden". It's about a Washington State gardener, who recreated the natural state of soil, respected Life, and created Garden of Eden like sustainable rich growing of fruits and vegetables, unlike anyone or anywhere else on Earth.
Lacking formal education, he turned to the Bible and used it as a blueprint, a blueprint of Life. Quite phenomenal, if you ask me, one in many billions.
Maybe I was inspired by how he looked... I listened more with my body than my mind, more to how he was than what he said, without resistance, and it activated something in me.
So, yesterday, when a student asked me how he could activate courage, I suddenly knew the answer.
I have had the answer all along, but living the answer or speaking the answer are two different things.
Marshall Thurber calls this phenomenon "Positive Deviants". Deviants, because they don't do what they do from their mind, don't know what they know from Tree of Knowledge. They are directly connected to the Tree of Life, and the knowledge that comes from there makes them one in a billion, a freak, a deviant. Some deviants know how to do agriculture: i.e. grow plants that feed you, give you shelter, give you clothing. Some deviants know how to feed your young so they are strong and resilient. Some deviants know how to return you to your own energy sources and get you back to health.
No Tree of Knowledge. Tree of Knowledge is destroying Life. At this point, even the space, or possibility of Life.
But if you look, inside of you it has even gone further. It has made you rootless, groundless, self-less. You don't know why you are alive, because you are separated from Life. You make up s-h-i-t, like you are alive to help others, you are alive to be happy, and such happy horseshit... that ultimately leaves you empty, unfulfilled, and alienated.
Producers vs. Consumers
When 1% of the world's population is producing what the 99% consumes, the 99% is unhappy, unfulfilled, and cut from Life.
In the book Brave New World, the 99% needs to be drugged all the time, needs to be brainwashed from the beginning, because the inner tension is unbearable.
Ayn Rand was onto something. She glimpsed a little corner of the Truth: that unless you are a producer, you are unhappy, and a slave or a slave driver, a second-hander, and an enemy and threat to Life.
Of course Ayn Rand was also a political thinker, but also a visionary. She saw, she spoke about it... she didn't quite live it.
How to have courage?
Now, after this many words, what is my answer to the student who wants to become courageous?
My answer is that "because of love one is courageous"... before you can be courageous, you need to be up to something. You need to find your own unique expression of Life, and be up to align yourself with it. Then, and only then, will courage come and be there... because courage belongs only to the ones that serve Life. And remember, Life wants more life... it only cares about you, personally, to the degree your activity serves Life.
Unfair? Oh yeah.
In the Instant Coherence workshop, I have been working with a small group of people, who have been resisting me every step of the way.
The goal of the workshop is to help you invent a context for your life, every area of your life, that is aligned with Life, and puts you square in charge to create more life.
Tree of Knowledge has been in the way, every step of the way. People's concept has been to invent something bombastic, blustery, and then be done with it, return to their lives and feel better about themselves.
Every single person has been resisting realigning their lives to something they say.
Going from where humans are now, 100% Tree of Knowledge, killing Life, and surviving, the way to Tree of Life, is not a straight line, not something I have been able to cause. So far.
But it's not over till the fat lady sings...