The Da Xuan Taoist tradition offers a guide and process to clarify and understand ourselves on a fundamental human level.
Only by cutting through the crap, the irrational judgements born of an untamed mind-scape, the emotional baggage accumulated unwittingly throughout our lives, and the burden of fear which prevents us from confronting ourselves and our finite existence, can we begin to make inroads into understanding our deep personal nature and its impact on our path through life.
Doing so is not easy. Our ego kicks against the removal of it’s safe limits, our lives, jobs and family get in the way, and frankly it’s a matter of hard work over a long period to proceed down this path of self knowledge. It’s not for everyone. But the pursuit of personal understanding is of incredible value and those able should strive tirelessly for improvement.
The beautiful thing about this process is that understanding ourselves not only enriches our own lives but also our relationships and the lives of those around us. By knowing ourselves deeply we can nourish our relationships, building on our positive tendencies and compensating for our weaknesses. Furthermore, we can recognise the nature of those around us and know how to better approach interaction, encouragement and support. Simply put, knowing and defining ourselves clearly, we can know those around us better. Already we are giving something positive back to the group, family or clan, cleaning up the disharmony and unhappiness caused by misunderstanding and miscommunication.
But it goes even further. Having understood ourselves and our relationship to our social groups, we can start to understand the bigger picture, the dynamics of society, the nature of mankind as a whole and our very existence. This greater understanding and interaction with the universe however, is completely dependent on the fundamental work we do on ourselves, for ourselves.
In a moment in history where decisions for the sake of national ‘tribes’ have such a deep impact on the global dynamic and the entire future of our species, time spent understanding and cultivating ourselves to improve our connection to our social groups and the global whole can only be time well spent.