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17 Spiritual Lessons From the Dog Whisperer

A few days ago one of my students from Florida told me about this unusual TV program
they are showing on the Discovery Channel called The Dog Whisperer! Do you know
what it’s about? If not I’ll tell you about it in just a short while but before that I want to tell
you something on a little different tangent.
600 years before Jesus’ birth, a man called Lao Tzu lived in ancient China. He was a
man around whom many mysteries and myths surround but as far as I can tell from cross
referencing history, this man worked for the imperial government as a record keeper or
librarian of sorts. According to biographies and legend, he got tired of the city life and the
continuous wars and traveled to the west to live as a hermit in at the age of 160! At the
gate of the kingdom he was recognized by a guard and the guard requested the old
master to write something that would preserve his wisdom. This is the legendary origin of
the Tao Te Ching (loosely translated as: the book of the great way). This book, in its 81
beautiful short verses, captures the essence of spirituality like no other text I have
personally encountered. Some scholars say that it is one of the wisest books ever written
and I very much agree.
The philosophy of this work focused on the following concepts: tao, wu (emptiness), wu -
wei (nondoing) and Fu (the return of all things to their origins). The goal of the Taoist
philosophy is, to become one with Tao, the great way, by aligning your self with the
universal laws and return to origins. But to achieve this, the student has to achieve
emptiness and simplicity, practice non-doing, and dedicate his life to the understanding of
the great way.
Here is the very first verse of Tao Te Ching for those of you who would like to appreciate
the beauty of this master work:
The Tao that can be spoken of is not the eternal Tao.
The name that can be named is not the eternal name.
The nameless is the beginning of heaven and earth.
The name is the mother of the ten thousand things.
Send your desires away and you will see the mystery.
Be filled with desire and you will see only the manifestation.
As these two come forth they differ in name.
Yet at their source they are the same.
This source is the mystery.
The mystery itself is the gateway to all understanding.
~Verse 1: Tao Te Ching
The reason I am mentioning Tao Te Ching right at the beginning is this. In my journeys
and adventures over the years in search of the truth, I have come to understand that
there is indeed a great way (and then eventually found Tao Te Ching and many other
similar teachings and saw the parallels of my own realizations). You can call it the
universal laws, the archetypal patterns, the natural forces or will of God.
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