Napoleon was involved in conversation with a colonel of a Hungarian battalion who had been taken prisoner in Italy. The colonel mentioned he had fought in the army of Maria Theresa. "You must have a few years under your belt!" exclaimed Napoleon. "I'm sure I've lived sixty or seventy years," replied the colonel. "You mean to say," Napoleon continued, "you have not kept track of the years you have lived?"
The colonel promptly replied, "Sir, I always count my money, my shirts, and my horses - but as for my years, I know nobody who wants to steal them, and I shall surely never lose them."
Notes on the Tao Te Ching
The following notes paraphrase in common language a modern translation of the Tao Te Ching:
Words are words, they are not life. Words are used to draw lines and describe concepts. Life is not a concept, nor is it divided or explained by words. Words cause nonsense. Life is lived, not described.
Words separate things: There is life/death, difficult/easy, long/short, high/low ... and all points in between. Music comes from varying tones. No sane person can determine the law of life, the way of life in between these points. No one knows the way, or what will or should happen next. How can a leader be important and show the way when they are limited. Never be important.
Good government comes from many people who live by their hearts and not some important person's rule and direction based on their limited knowledge.
The Universe can take care of itself. It does not need important people.
People go crazy arguing about the Universe, though it has taken care of itself very long.
Life is free -- the more you breathe, the more breath is left to breathe.
The Universe is deathless.
A human is like this also. They take care of themselves. There is an inherent undertone and current of health and integrity which takes care of a person. A person seeks a natural level with their Universe.
Tao is quiet and unnoticed by the outside world.
We live in the space (emptiness) of a house. Tao is empty of outside appearances.
External orientation causes problems. Internal orientation is quiet and sensible.
Life flows deeper than the rising and setting of the sun. A deeper existence is in each person as well. This is timeless.
This cannot be understood, but it flows. "When the river is murky, be patient and let the rivers flow and take it's course, it will clear the mud."
Accept life (birth, flowering, death) quietly and openly. Accept the flowing of the River.
A good leader leads others to leading themselves.
People lose Tao, distortion in the outward comes -- law, ritual, words, hypocrisy. This is not the inward quiet flow of life, but confusion and chaos.
Again, words or analysis of life, distracts from life; status carries problems; law causes thieves -- these ways fail to bring happiness. Tao is in the heart, not in greed, status, or knowledge.
People's knowledge is a distraction, their leaders are a fake. How can someone know the way for other people ? The material world is so important to people, they make their mark, while I am quietly nursing at the breast of life.
You try to know or measure what cannot be understood or measured. Accept life that way, it precedes anyway.
Yield to life forces. What can happen that cannot be mended ?
Be natural following life, don't insist or force. Nature does not insist. Follow life naturally and you will be alive.
An open ear is the only believable sign of an open heart
An optimist is someone who goes after Moby Dick in a rowboat and takes the tartar sauce with him
Any fool can criticize, complain, condemn, and most fools do
The art of leadership is saying no, not saying yes. It is very easy to say yes.
The very essence of leadership is that you have to have a vision. It’s got to be a vision you articulate clearly and forcefully on every occasion. You can’t blow an uncertain trumpet.
Reverend Theodore Hesburgh
The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.
A good general not only sees the way to victory; he also knows when victory is impossible.
A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position.
Anyone who angers you conquers you
Sister Kenny’s mother
Anything scarce is valuable; praise for example
Apathy can only be overcome by enthusiasm
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