This is the moment of embarking. All auspicious signs are in place.
There are a variety of dawns in the world. There’s the personal dawn of our birth. There’s the dawn always waiting for us tomorrow and then there is the dawn that attends a spiritual awakening. This is the dawn you are experiencing today. You had a choice today: you could easily have done something else, what you have been doing for years, perhaps decades. By choosing your Path, you are choosing to know and to maximize your inner self. You are choosing to get in tune with the life you are meant to live.
Every dawn brings a choice: are we going to conquer doubt and weakness or are we going to surrender to those two imposters? Are we going to follow the dictates of our inner self or are we going to ignore them? Are we going to utilize our time and talents or are we going to squander them? Are we going to mark time, or is time going to serve us?
It is not possible for a life spent on one’s Path to be futile. A person fully absorbed in The Way, by definition, lives the life they are meant to live – life’s great prize. At every new dawn, a Taoist signs up for their Path. It’s their way of announcing to themselves that their time on this planet is serving them.
The end of the day is the respite from the day’s labors and cares. Like every other hour of the day, it is time The Way allows us to put to use.
Did we accomplish today what needed to be accomplished? Were we focused or did we allow outside distractions to take precedence? What did we comply with the commands of our inner self or the dictates and whims of others? Did we put nature and circumstance to work for us or did we fit into the slots assigned by others?
Night is a good time to answer these questions. If we did well, it lays the foundation for tomorrow’s triumphs. If we could have done better, it provides the inspiration to conquer tomorrow’s 24 hours instead of squandering them. When we’ve faced ourselves honestly, we are poised for a good rest. We awake prepared for the sun’s rising and the new day.
While Taoists respect all spiritual paths, they remain certain the only way to achieve oneness with all things is to achieve oneness with themselves. They long ago decided they could not do this by producing knee-jerk reactions to outside influences or trying to fit into slots assigned by others. All living from the outside in got them was frustration because their inner self was being ignored, their time and talents squandered. They were out of touch with themselves, with others and with the rest of the world.
When The Way presented itself they decided they’d had enough with being out of touch with themselves. The road to oneness begins with the wisdom to know what you are about. This involves self-examination, a journey to the center of your soul to determine the talents you were born with and how best to put them to use, a journey not everyone is willing to take.