Master Lu's Dialogues

The Heavenly Master - picture

Very often disciples used to ask questions in order to clear understand the doctrine. The questions and answers (provided by Master) where the basis of an entire dialogue that covered some important issue such as what is tao, what is wu, wu-wei and so forth.

Here we published several short dialogues with our master Lu taken by Jhian Yang, the author of our Taoism courses and disciple of the first. More dialogues will be published soon. Also you may wish to take our entire collection of Master's sayings edited in PDF - click here to learn more.

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Mistaken the False Disciple
for the True One

There are two kinds of people: those who follow the Tao without thinking about this, one may say, unconsciously. And those who try to follow the Tao through a constant effort, say, consciously. The reason is they wish to step on what is sure, leads to attainment and avoids failure.

For the first category the benefit is only a certain feeling of rightness, or something close. One may say it is a kind of going with the stream. Their benefit is very personal so one can not recognize them.

Therefore when one says: Look this is a Taoist adept (because he looks and behaves like a Taoist), I am pretty sure he mistaken the rather false disciple for the true one!

One can not recognize a true Master. He doesn't look like a Taoist.

Lao Tzu talked about the ancient masters and pointed to their muddy or troubled figure. He couldn't recognize them either!

Two Kinds of Wisdom

There are two kinds of wisdom: the practical and the static one. The practical is the wisdom which helps one doing things. It is a rather short living wisdom because it ceases when time comes. The static one doesn't help one in doing things and looks like a store of unsold goods. People cherish the practical wisdom and leave or ignore the static one.

Modern Living?

I just found the following verses published in a Taoist group:

    The past is gone.
    The future is unpredictable.
    All we have is now.
    Make great use of it.

Are they really Taoist? No, they are not. The past is gone, of course, but did you learn something useful from it? The future is unpredictable? I don't think so - what about the I-ching and its divination method? I-ching is part of Taoist aim at knowing the way out of the confusion of the time.

All we have is now? This is what we call a natural philosophy of living or the concept of seizing the day. We live for today and look for what can excite our feelings. The entire western modern culture of TV, News and Advertisements is based on this idea. It is not Taoist at all! It is a way of living without thinking at the entire view of life! By Jhian

 Tao Is the Same

A new start is always a vivid source of intense feelings. Still one should consider what is really knew or if there's something that he/she could call new. Taoist thinks that there's nothing new under the sun. Only the ever lasting mixture of yin and yang. In Tao-te ching we are told that at the very beginning there was a kind of shape without shape. Lao-tzu called this "shape" the Tao. It is just what I wished to say above. Tao is everywhere the same. If you wish to penetrate its "movements" just close your eyes and contemplate its essence.

Lost in Tao

Me (Jhian) : Someone told me that he felt like lost in Tao. It was about the starting point, he said: When you start your Tao experience and how you know that you actually have a Tao experience? What you think about this?

Mater Lu: There's no way to feel like you are lost in the Tao. Tao is not a country or land or something alike to feel like you're lost. Tao is like a Father showing you the way. How could one feel lost in this? I really don't imagine.

Tao Is not God

Question: I remember I had a problem with my wife and been very affected. I am practicing the Tao but it didn't help me.

Answer: Tao is not God. One can't ask Tao to behave like God and do things to help one, and so forth. Stop thinking of Tao in terms of a mighty God, who can change things and do anything. If you have problems with your mate or family just keep that state of nondoing and see what happens. This is the way.

Question: Well, I was keeping that state and still there was so much suffering.

Answer: This is because Tao is not God. It doesn't help you with your suffering. Actually it brings the suffering!

No Tao at All

Mater Lu said: Sometimes we know the Tao as the Tao - sometimes it seems it vanishes so one can say: "There's no Tao at all". This is the way of the beginner: knowing that the Tao is but not having the perpetual perception of his presence.

Tao Machine...
By Jhian

I once asked Master Lu if going with the Tao doesn't make one feel like he/she is a machine... No personal will, no desire...
He answered: We are all machines, indeed - as we perform various tasks machinelike. Very few are wise enough to retain what is worth and escape the passing-by. The Worst

Question: What is the worst thing one can do in following the Path?
Answer: Not being with Tao but only thinking of it.

Tao, Good and Bad

- What is the Tao good for? asked Wu from the Northern Sea. Is it good for food, for ride or perhaps for fighting enemies?

- No, replied the Master of No Concern, it is not good for any food, ride or fighting your enemies. It is just the Lord of everything, so you shouldn't ask about good and bad.

About the Tao-te ching Formula

- 1 gave birth to 2, and 2 to 3, and so fort. What is this for?

- I am no sure, Mater Lu's responds, perhaps a math formula?

- It is from Tao-te ching. I suspected to be some philosophical formula rather than a math's one.

- Well philosophy it like math - difficult. Taoists are not this way difficult. They are pragmatic persons.

- Still this (formula) is a concern of Lao-tzu in his Tao-te ching. He talks about the Beginnings, the Tao, the Great Pervader and trying to explain it in plain words…

- 1 that leads to 2, and 2 to 3 is a natural sequence of things, continued Master Lu. Therefore may be an illustration of the way one should conceive the Tao. A pragmatic view rather than an occult, exciting, approach. He would have said: Tao is that simple like 1, 2, 3…

Beginners and the True Understanding

- Is this all that can be said about the Tao? asked someone after reading Tao-te ching.

- Yes, replied Master Lu. This is all.

- Still I don't understand much and wonder if this is because I am a beginner.

- If you think you are a beginner, yes, this is the reason. But if you don't think at all, you may touch the True Understanding, replied Master Lu.

If Nothing Matters...

- If nothing matters in this world, if everything is just passing by, why don't you grab as much as you can, why don't you travel better and better, and enjoy all this world has to offer? In fact, we can do anything...

- Not exactly, said Master Lu. Just think about the payback - you may lose your freedom. And even if this wouldn't be your case, when you cling to worldly things, you feel astray from your inner essence and lose gold for the sake of iron.

About the Meaning of Life

I wonder what is the meaning of life here if nothing have duration and sense, there's nothing worth to die for, nor any guaranty for eternal life such that promised by Christian preachers?

Master Lu replied:  A newborn child is not aware about himself, and lives simple, by instinct. Later he finds some things, grows adult and enters life with all his heart, still unconsciously. But there are some people who discover themselves and look at themselves and ask questions. Why this... why that...? For these people existence has meaning because allowed them to develop the self-awareness, to become conscious of their deeds, of their sense (or nonsense). These ones discovered the charm of life. The sense of being born is to develop and nurture this awareness which may save you at last.

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