Chapter 13: Loathe Shame: Live Shamelessly

Being favored (through love or fame) or being disgraced are both to be feared.
They hinge both on immaterial personal integrity, nobility and honor – and on the materially-manifesting, painful anxiety, so bad that it makes you wanna barf like you were pregnant with morning sickness.

Why are favor and disgrace both fearsome?
Because they are opposite poles on the same scale of shame.
Once you gain favor, you are always afraid that you will lose it.
Disgrace, of course, can only occur when favor is lost.

Why must they hinge not only on the immaterial but upon the physical?
What makes me vulnerable to the pain, inflammation, seizures, and nightmares of anxiety is having a human body;
If I had no body, no harm could come to me.
But then, I wouldn’t exist.
And what fun would that be?

Lao Tzu got all political here, but he said something smart and true:
The best and most trustworthy leaders treat their countries and communities with the exact same care they would their own bodies.

And really, it’s just another way of stating the Golden Rule.
Do Unto Others As You Would Have Done Unto You.

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