Finding the Tao in running sounds like a paradox: moving fast and going forward and still staying in the present moment of each step. By enjoying and being in the moment within each movement and every step, the runner can glimpse the stillness and the action, the inbetweennes of motion, Ying and Yang. Neither here nor there, neither action or stillness. The point in the circle, neither neither or the paradox of Wu Wei.
Without the tao,
Kindness and compassion are replaced by law and justice;
Faith and trust are supplanted by ritual and ceremony.
Wu Wei is the abstract concept of “non-doing” or non action in Taoism. The paradox of “Action of non-action”, or in popular speak: Go with the flow. Which is not to confuse with being lazy and lets see what happens attitude since Wu Wei demands action and non-action. The state of being in which our actions are in alignment with the ebb and flow of the elemental cycles of the natural world and our true Will. This state of mind is characterized by great ease and awakeness, in which we are fully responsible for our own action and able to respond perfectly to whatever situations arises. In the Taoist way Wu Wei is spontaneous, organic and considered the to be the highest virtue.
As we learn and experience Wu Wei, we will find our alignment with the Tao and with our own Will. When we experience the Tao with the natural flow of every -thing within and outside of our self, our actions will become naturally and of the highest benefit to ourselves and to the universe surrounding us. We will become the balance between the dot in the circle, the Ying and Yang. We will enter the in between state and slowly we will master the embodiment of Wu Wei, the Action of non-action, the Thought of non-thought, and the Mind of non-mind. We will find our place within the universe, the cosmos and knowing our connection to all that is. At that point, our thoughts, words and actions won’t do no harm, since they are expressions of the beauty and the pureness of the Tao and in alignment with the universe. Our actions and thoughts become a pure manifestation of our real self, our Will and the Tao.
The highest virtue is to act without a sense of self
The highest kindness is to give without a condition
The highest justice is to see without a preference
When Tao is lost one must learn the rules of virtue
When virtue is lost, the rules of kindness
When kindness is lost, the rules of justice
When justice is lost, the rules of conduct
For me, Tao in running means; Run without running, Moving and staying in the stillness of the present moment, loosing my self with every step to find my self, to experience the state of non-mind and non thought without loosing contact with reality. It also means, experiencing and finding the relation with my inner self and the universe, free of any formal religious or secular moral precept. Tao in running can become a way of meditation and part of a non-theistic spirituality.
Try it, go out and run without mind!