The big secret of Taoism can be summed up in one phrase: Lightness comes from heaviness. Lightness does not engender more lightness. It either disappears altogether or it starts to condense, becomes heavy, falls. There are no states, only stages of transition. Even enlightenment, I suspect, which always seems a little puerile as a concept – a cozy destination – an end in sight – is subject to decay and corruption. The enlightened master doesn't sit upon his throne spouting spiritual platitudes but works the garden, sweeps the floor, cooks the food, not out of magnanimous selflessness but out of absolute necessity.

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