Balance means being in harmony with our environment. How we are inside reflects how things are around us and vice versa. Here in the west we find it hard to believe we are one with our environment. Individualistic, separate and dualistic is more our favorite way to think.
Being in balance with your environment. (Taoism, story from R. Wilhelm, early 20th century)
But in many ancient cultures our believe system was different. We were believed to be one with the nature, humans and animals surrounding us, one in one great energy field, living together in a balanced way. Today we still find these believes in shamanistic practices.
Taoism also stems from shamanistic practices and beliefs. In the story below we see a beautiful and inspiring example of Taoism. This story was told by C. Jung who heard it from R. Wilhelm, the great translator of the I Tjing and writer of The secret of the Golden Flower.
As a missionary in China Wilhelm witnessed an event that took place during a drought lasting for months in a Chinese village he was visiting. This story dates back to the beginning of the 20th century.
"Catholics were holding their processions, the Protestants giving prayers, with the local Chinese burning joss-sticks and shooting off guns to frighten away the demons of drought, but with no result. Finally the Chinese villagers declared: we will fetch the rain-maker. After a time from another province a dried-up old man appeared humbly dressed. His only request was a quiet little house somewhere, and there he locked himself in for three days. On the fourth day the clouds gathered, the heavens opened with rain and even a great snow storm at the time of the year when no snow was expected, an unusual amount. The town was so full of rumors about the wonderful rain-maker that Wilhelm went to ask the man how he dit id. In true European fashion he approached the rainmaker and asked: Will you tell me how you made it rain and snow? The little Chinese said: I did not make the snow or rain, I am not responsible.
But what have you done these days? Oh I can explain that, I come from another province where things are in order. Here they are out of order, they are not as they should by the ordinance of heaven. Therefor the whole country is not in Tao, therefore I also am not in the natural order of things because I am in a disordered country. So I had to wait
Three days until I was back in Tao and then naturally the rain came".
A story for our time.
Source : Tai Chi Chuan and the code of life - G. Horwood