A beautiful passage here from Qu Yuan's The Far-Off Journey:
The Tao can only be received,
It never can be given.
So small that it has no within,
So big it has no bounds.
No twists at all inside your soul,
And it will come spontaneously.
Focus on energy and open up to spirit -
Let them grow in you at the midnight hour.
Wait for the Tao in emptiness,
Clear even of non-action.
All living species rise from this,
It is the Gate of Virtue.
One thing that I love about this poem, as a whole, is how it leads the reader through various stages along Qu Yuan's path: different moods, challenges and breakthroughs.
If you're conversant with Inner Alchemical symbolic language, you'll be able to understand certain of the metaphors -- e.g. "So I eat the six energies and drink the nightly dew, Rinse my mouth with yang itself and swallow morning light" -- as references to specific bodymind practices. And even if not, there's a palpable sense of exploration and journey that is conveyed -- of triumph and travail, and arrival, finally, at a mysteriously unimaginable destination:
Below just lofty openness, there is no more earth;
Above just empty vastness, there is no more heaven.
I look but my vision blurs, nothing to be seen;
I listen but my ears are numb, nothing to be heard.
Going beyond non-action, I reach the Clarity,
Become a neighbour of the Great Beginning.
Though personally I tend to prefer shorter poems, I appreciate this kind of narrative window into a practitioner's spiritual unfolding -- particularly at times when I'm noticing distinct shifts in my own practice, which has been the case, as of late.
Not quite sure how to describe this shift -- other than to say that it's some kind of transformation from "Elizabeth searching for something" to "Something searching for Elizabeth." Even though an energy of "me chasing Truth/Tao" still exists, that activity is now held within a larger container, if you will, whose dynamics are flavored by a sense of "Truth (playfully/seriously) stalking me." Like the whole thing has been turned inside-out, in a way that feels at times like a great relief, at times quite funny, and at other times a bit disconcerting, like: "who's really in control here?!"
Anyway, when I've "become a neighbor of the Great Beginning," I'll be sure to invite y'all for tea, tee-hee :)