Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Thinking, Waiting, and Fasting

I'm reading Siddhartha. Siddhartha says:

"Listen, Kamala, When you throw a stone into the water, it finds the quickest way to the bottom of the water. It is the same when Siddhartha has an aim, a goal. Siddhartha does nothing; he waits, he thinks, he fasts, but he goes through the affairs of the world like the stone through the water, without doing anything, without bestirring himself; he is drawn and lets himself fall. He is drawn by his goal, for he does not allow anything to enter his mind which opposes the goal. That is what Siddhartha has learned from the Samanas [wandering ascetics]. It is what fools call magic and what they think is caused by demons. Nothing is caused by demons; there are no demons. Everyone can perform magic, everyone can reach his goal, if he can think, wait and fast."

An interesting idea. Possibly I will elaborate more when I'm finished with it. This has been on my mind anyway. I suppose if you're interested and have a little time on your hands I can point in the direction of wu wei.

Oh, and a one minute clip of The Simpsons reminded me of this song, which I've never listened to properly.

I'm not sure what that saxophone evokes for me, but it's all kinds of awesome.


  1. I think it's less about "the goal" than about goals in general. A thought about the possible benefit in terms of efficiency of just chilling out a little. It is actually very probably that I will elaborate but I'll need to have more time.

  2. It seems like you're missing the point a little. Did this Siddhartha get what he wanted because he did nothing, or did he get what he wanted because he was so focused on what he wanted that getting it was the most natural thing to happen? I don't know anything about this "wu wei" philosophy, but I would bet that saying "Good things will happen to me if I don't have any specific goals." is a misunderstanding of it. Without a particular goal, which you really want, you're certainly not going to achieve anything.

  3. I didn't say I didn't have any. I said the quote's not about them specifically. I could try and list my goals, but they're rather amorphous at the moment and tend to mean quite little to others.
    The focus we're talking about is actually directly related to "doing nothing" - more specifically forcing nothing, but I've really got to address this stuff when I have more of my brain and time available.