The Virtue of a Newborn Child

Reflections on Chapter 55 of the Tao Te Ching:

One who possesses virtue
can be compared to a newborn child.

Hornets will not sting,
snakes will not bite,
wild animals will not pounce,
bird of prey will not attack.

Her bones are flexible
and her muscles are soft,
yet her grip is firm.

She has not experienced the union
of woman and man,
yet she is perfectly aroused.
Her life force is strong indeed!

To the end of days,
she screams and cries –
yet her young voice does not grow hoarse.
Her natural harmony
is completely in balance.

To perceive this harmony
is to be in tune with the eternal.

To know the eternal
is called enlightenment.

To improve one’s vitality
is one of life’s blessings.

Too much thinking can drain your strength
and exhaust your energy.

This is not Tao.
What is not Tao always comes to an end.


Babies are just so cool.

They are so fresh to the experience of life! They haven’t yet developed all those weird adult/human foibles. They are raw expression. They just do their thing. They are so natural. We can learn a lot from these sweet little creatures. It is just like watching the animals and the trees respond naturally to things. It has so much to teach us!

We are so clouded by our man-made crap that we have piled on to life.

Too much adult stuff clouds our perception. This is about bringing things back fresh to our baby ways.  Lao Tzu talks of that vitality here. A baby has such vitality and passion. If its hungry, you know it! It cries and it doesn’t have guilt or thoughts that get in the way. When it is a baby, it has none of those thoughts or worries that tell it not to cry.

A child learns that behavior as it grows.

A child learns to not bother to cry because no one will answer. A child learns that this behavior means that will happen to them. She learns all those things. These aren’t natural behaviors, they are learned behaviors. How do I know this? Not every culture has the same behaviors!

As parents, we wish so much for our children to have the perfect upbringing.

The sad thing is, we are the major cause of them learning their behaviors. Unfortunately, our own shadows and our own karmic debts overshadow the way that we bring up our children. We carry those patterns with us. A lot of the Tao is about bringing us back to our natural state. It is about bringing us back to that fresh attitude of life where we are not bound down by our past mistakes. We are not limited by those things that make us believe that we are bad people or thoughts that drag us down. We are not shut down and are able to live the amazing lives we are meant to live.  Wouldn’t that be wonderful? Wouldn’t that be wonderful for our children?

I think that is why people love babies so much. 

Babies give us a fresh start. They have that freshness that reminds us of our potential. The only language they have is crying and smiling. They just deal with life. They deal with whatever comes at them. It is so amazing. They just trust that they are going to be fed. They can’t feed themselves, so they just lay there and people naturally want to feed them.

Babies have divine protection.  

There is a protection around that innocence life. It is not just with babies. This is something that comes free as a bonus with trusting your life. There is a force that supports you. Babies understand this innately. They are pure. They haven’t been burdened by all the problems that we have as adults. They can’t do anything but trust. Trust is the default.

To some degree, that is part of why we are drawn to fulfilling that trust.

If someone trusts that everything will be taken care of, people are drawn to take care of things. Have you ever met someone who is very confident and they come into the space and everything in the Universe just comes together to fulfill whatever they need? They have an energetic match to things just getting done and that is what happens. It is because they know that everything will be done and they trust it to happen. That is their understanding.

This is a really powerful force if you can just be with it and experiment with it.

Play with it in your own life.  How does it play out? I am not talking about arrogance here. Arrogance has a different energy to it.  Arrogance is haughty and inspires rebellion. Arrogance repels people. This sort of energy draws people like a moth to a flame. What I am talking about here is a trusting sort of knowing. Knowing that things are going to be good and just letting them be so.

The Law of Attraction explains a lot of things.

People think, “Oh, I am thinking positive but things still aren’t working.” There is an energy that we are talking about here. It isn’t so much the words. It is more about the energy beneath something. Lack. The thought that things aren’t really working yet is an energy of lack.

Watch the energy instead of the words.

What is the energy telling you? How does it feel in your body as you hear your internal dialogue? If you are having trouble with this, try just having an attitude of  “I don’t know”. You don’t know how things are going to turn out. We can all agree that this is true so you can accept it honestly. Not knowing is doable. If you are in a space of not trusting, just let it go. You are going to be OK with whatever it is. Just try that. If you can manage that, then you are partway there. Sometimes that is all you can do.

Sometimes you are just not in a space to trust.

Try just trusting enough to just let go and be OK with any way that it is. I accept my reality as it is today. You can accept today. You might not be able to accept a future with several more years of whatever it is, but you can accept today. That’s all there ever is, today. Tomorrow you wake up with a new today. If you can let go of control of it being something other than what it is today, as you let go it releases that energy that ties you to the way it was yesterday.

You are releasing the energy that binds you to that old pattern.

You are letting go of that. You are being a baby – in a good way! The baby is today. The baby is in right now. The baby isn’t even five minutes from now! The baby is RIGHT NOW! That is what challenges us with babies! They can’t see anything but right now! The baby isn’t thinking about next week! What are you talking about? They want right now! lol…  All you need to focus on is right now, today, and where you want to be today. Once you have a few todays strung together where you are letting go of that old stuff, you will find freedom…and that is a very good thing.


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  1. Hi, I really enjoy reading your posts. They remind me of what is important in life.
    Athena Brady recently posted…I just had to share this with youMy Profile

  2. Pingback: The Tenderness of Youth

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