Moss-covered Monk

Moss-covered Monk


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Delayed Daily Musing - March 19th, 2013 - Worship - 朝拜 - Cháobài

Worship - 朝拜 - Cháobài

Gods may be worshipped,
but not Tao.

~inspired by Deng Ming-Dao

The adoration between an individual and God (or Gods) is a beautiful union. It provides more sustenance than a sumptuous feast. It is more valuable than all the gold in the world. Faith is a sanctuary in which to seek shelter. Faith allows a retreat from the physical world; in order to commune with the spiritual, one must properly worship. Joyous and ecstatic experiences will result from such spiritual dedication.

If you are limited in your spiritual views, you will always lose sight of the holy. When you are a mere acolyte, you may turn away from the gods at any time. Those who follow Tao realize that gods do not inhabit the altar, they encompass the entire world. A Taoist sees god in every single action; thus, they can never lose sight of the divine.

Gods are worshipped on a daily basis, but Tao cannot be deified in such a way. Why is this? It is because gods lead to good outcomes, inspiring ever-higher devotion. As magnificent as this may seem at first, it is still limited when compared against the eternity of Tao. Tao is indefinite, unlimited, impersonal, and formless. To worship Tao is akin to the worship of dark energy in deep space; such misplaced adoration would cast one adrift in a sea of nothingness. Tao will not speak directly, without supplication there can be no response. The ecstatic unions of other faiths have no place in a union of self and Tao, for Tao is undifferentiated and yet, infinitely great. Tao is eternal. We humans are limited by human perception, and thus, anything so small as worship will disappear into the vastness of Tao. Only when one enters Tao wholeheartedly does one become part of its limitlessness. Once within, worship is unnecessary.