Yin K'uo

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The law of repercussion [Yin K'uo 因果 pinyin Yīnguǒ]

If you scratch your hand, or stub your toe, or if you drop something, then immediately stop to think back within the last thirty seconds or one minute, and try and collect your thoughts and remember if you had a bad thought during this time, because this could possibly be what we know in Taoism as the Law of Repercussion (Yin K'uo 因果 pinyin Yīnguǒ). If you do something more serious — that is, harass or harm somebody — then you can guarantee that someone will be doing the same to you, if not quite in the same way, within a very short space of time. So learn to try and understand it, endeavour to see it and in so doing learn to appreciate it. Then your eyes will be opened and you will begin to see the Tao. This understanding takes time, but, if you get into the habit of turning your thoughts inwards, you will start to understand the outward sphere of things that happen in your life every day.

The violence in this world is only what we make it ourselves; these are the repercussions of our own deeds. There is no danger for those who truly live the way of the Tao, because if you think no evil, and do no evil, then evil will not exist. When we no longer think of good deeds and good thoughts, then even goodness disappears. When we no longer see bad thoughts and bad deeds, then badness itself will disappear. When we no longer compare one with another then all disappear, and we understand the Tao.

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The Taoist Art of K'ai Men

by Chee Soo

Copyright ©Seahorse Books 2006 (reproduced with permission)