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In Tai Chi, and many ancient Wisdom Ways, the question of elegance is Key. Not style, not flash, but going to the essence of things. In Tai Chi it is spoken of as

Applying five grams of effort to move five hundred kilos.

Elegance is almost wholly absent in modern culture. We pride ourselves on applying maximum effort to every problem, rarely noticing how many more problems follow solutions activated out of compulsive busyness and hurry.

This is the culture of exhaustion for exhaustion’s sake. The culture of the busy, the distracted, the busily distracted and the distractedly busy.

It is one thing to take alarm at this, or to try and change it. This is like applying five hundred kilos of effort for a microgram of results. It is the mission of fools.

I have been such a fool. With time, paying attention, I begin to notice my own compulsiveness, my own hurry, my frantic sense of “urgency,” my own need to “fix” things, people, circumstances so that I can feel better. I begin to relax, get curious, allow the wrinkles on my forehead to smooth out a little bit and some upward curves to sprout at the corners of my mouth.

13DrawingsDFNP1140035It takes a certain daring to find not only humor in the madness, but to gaze upon what I consider madness as a phase in a cycle, to SEE it deeply, with wisdom and beauty in the totality and the particularities of everything that is unfolding. Then I begin to see beyond the small, reactive, insecure, moralizing and emotionalizing frames of my likes and dislikes, my desires and repulsion, my choice and rejection.

I get where they come from, deeply, from my childhood, my development, my insecurities and the experiences I grew up adapting to. I begin to recognize my pattern, my programming, and the creative challenge of growing my Living Pattern into expressions more vital and expansive than my current frame. I respect them,  FEEL them, integrate them AND see beyond them, connecting them to a Greater Attention, giving them Lived, Felt and Attentive Context.

That doesn’t mean that I don’t have preferences. It means that I give my preferences a Greater Context to continue to be “my preferences” in. I open up Space for them to be just as they are, while also allowing them, and Awareness, to connect beyond my small frame.

Aliveness IS. We are Alive. How?

Not by what we think we are doing. Aliveness does us, Elegantly. It knows how. We are that “it,” intelligent beyond all of our imaginings and knowings; elegant.

Yes, I have preferences…

and then there is the world…

this world I am in…

this world that I am,

inviting me to notice it in the whirlwind of its Being,

and of its Becoming.

I discover that I can move beyond reactions and impressions and keep the gaze clear, ears open, heart open, without senti-mentality AND with sense-ability. I can feel the delight, the horror, the boredom, the sadness, the joy and continue SEEING, HEARING, MOVING.

Eventually I notice that to try to change the world is to drive myself to exhaustion. The world doesn’t require me to change it, it IS changing, unfolding in the whirlwinds of coalescing consequences in Absolute Simultaneity. In the cycles of which existence is woven, every problem sooner or later becomes its own solution. It cycles. It crescendos then fades, dies down and feeds the continuity of an ever-changing, ever-sustaining, ever-destroying cycle which births anew.

I SEE what a simple, concrete and challenging invitation wisdom is. It’s SO close, that it escapes our notice. It is not some “better idea,” but the skill to navigate, to find my way, clearly, lucidly, elegantly. Nothing to change: everything changes. Nothing to become, everything is becoming. Nothing to know, everything knows-in-Being. Nothing to fix; everything becomes undone. Every undoing births a new creation.

Amid the changes of being’s becoming we make our way, elegantly.

I open to openings. I warm in the sun, find shelter in the rain. Simply. I move beyond for and against, and move within what-is, and through, sense-ABLY and effort-LESS-ly.


How simple can it be?

How rich can it be?

How simply can it be rich?

Whose permissions do I need to FLOW WITH ELEGANCE?

Will I give it to me?

How many new qualities, relationships and conditions can I notice about my world and find new connections to, new openings in?

How elegant can living be?

Five Hundred Kilos :5 Grams of effort applied.

Ten Thousand Kilos: 1 gram


Elegance is the Apprenticeship Aliveness Invites us to; a Way with Skill, with Excellence, of Learning to Move Effectively without Striving. This takes application and care. Not busyness and effort:

Application. Attention. Care.

Because so much in most people’s childhood and upbringing forces us to struggle, staying busy and stressing out are familiar to us. We’ve been rewarded for this way of being, of exhausting and expending ourselves in this way of good little schoolmarms, team players, employees, soldiers marching in lockstep in chains of command. This is what passes as “normal” in this phase of “modern” civilization.

We ignore rooted, attentive, centered, flexible, light, still, yet exceedingly precise and rapid, elegant ease. Few imagine how easy life can be, how little it takes to live rich, WITH the haciendas and paso fino horses that the rich own but rarely have time to enjoy. Few imagine that they could own almost nothing but a second change of clothes, a few items AND OWN THE WORLD!

Elegance is an Art and a Science. It takes seeing the nature of things clearly, beyond what we wish things were or weren’t, and the courage to move into the Openings instead of pounding at the walls.

Slowly, I open to openings, without explanations, without accusations.

I ask myself:

How Simple Can it Be?

How Rich Can it Be?

How Simple Can it Be Rich?

How at Ease?

How Willing Am I to Walk Away from All of that and those who complicate, impoverish and dis-ease my life, without explanation, without accusation?

How Soon?

How many barriers must I really keep putting up between the Life I live and the Life I love?

How willing am I to look deeply at all the prohibitions I have about really taking these questions to heart, of Living in Elegance, of letting the human world rush headlong to the glorious burial grounds that its own madness prepares for it, and to Revel, to Celebrate and Stick to Aliveness, without protest, without asking anything or anybody to change, making my way, opening to openings, LIVING with the LIVING?

Gather Seeds.

Move Where the Openings Are

Face Dawn Light.

Dance with the Living.

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