Somebody asked Lao Tzu: How did you attain? …… I became a dry leaf ……… A STORY.
Somebody asked Lao Tzu: How did you attain?
He said: I was sitting under a tree and I had done all that could be done, all that was humanly possible and I was completely frustrated. Much had happened through it, but not all; something was lacking, missing, and the missing link was the most difficult to find, elusive.
Then while I was sitting under a tree, a leaf, a dry leaf, fell from the tree slowly, and moved in the wind. The wind was going north, the leaf moved north; then the wind changed course, started moving towards the south, and the leaf started moving towards the south; then the wind stopped — and the leaf fell down on the earth, with not a single complaint, with no struggle on its own part, with no direction of its own.
If the wind was going south, it was going south, if the wind was going north, it was going north, if the wind stopped, it fell down on the earth and rested beautifully.
Then again there was some wind and again it rose high in the sky — but there was no problem. Suddenly I understood, the message hit home. From that day I became a dry leaf and the missing link which was so elusive was elusive no more. The missing link was only this: that you can attain many things through effort but you cannot attain Tao through effort.
Finally you have to leave effort — and suddenly everything fits, you are in accordance. Then you don't give direction, then you are no longer a director; then you don't say to the winds: Go south, because I am on a journey towards the south. Then you don't have any destination; then the destiny of the whole is your destiny; then you are not separate.
Then you don't think in terms of individuality, you have become part of the whole and wherever the whole is going you are going. If the whole changes its mind, you change your mind; if the whole stops the journey, it is beautiful; if the whole runs, you run with it. That is what 'in accordance' means.
With not a bit of mind of your own, when you have become a no-mind, the whole lives through you, lives you, moves through you, moves you. Now you don't breathe, the whole breathes you. Then everything is a benediction, a blessing. How can you be tense then? Worried about what? All worries exist because you have brought an individual destiny into your mind against the destiny of the whole — you are moving up-current.
This is the whole secret of your failure — you are moving up-current. Then you are worried, tense, in anguish, in anxiety, almost going mad — anybody will go mad if they are going up-current because the fight is so hard and so meaningless. And one day you will feel tired and then it will look like a frustration, a failure. The wise man leaves this up-current nonsense, he simply allows the river to take him wheresoever it is going. If it is going anywhere, good; if it is not going anywhere, good — then suddenly you are still, silent.
Only then, never before, does real meditation happen and all effort is dropped. But you have to make the effort first, otherwise you will never understand that it has to be dropped. You can drop it only if you have been in it — and from the very beginning it is almost impossible for you to be so wise as to drop it. How can you drop a thing which you don't have?