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The Yin of Inner Leadership - 余 白 yohaku

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Spirit/e—The Tao of Personal Leadership

2007. 2. 17.

 

 

The Yin of Inner Leadership

 

yin

literally, "the female principle"

 

 

5. Yohaku

 

余 白

 

yohaku

 

the empty space

literally, "clearer than a ray of sun";

the empty space, the space of creative potential.

 

 

Thirty spokes meet at the wheel's axis;

The center space makes the wheel useful.

From clay into a cup;

The center space gives it purpose.

 Frame doors and windows for a house;

The openings make the house useful.

Therfore, purpose comes from what is there

Because of what is not there.

 

(Tao, 11)

 

 

Yohaku: the Key to Creativity

 

 

It is the period of incubation—yohaku—which leads to the flash of inspiration.

This period may be an hour, a day, a week, or longer,

but it must occur to allow our unconscious minds

to process the informaiton and come up with new insights,

inventions, and inspirations.

 

 

Yohaku in the Space Around Us

 

 

If we had the highest wisdom,

We would walk the path of Tao.

The path of Tao is simple,

Yet people take many detours.

 

Foolish leaders indulge themselves,

Leaving their fields untilled

And their storehouses empty.

They wear impressive clothes,

Brandish sharp words and weapons,

Are addicted to food, drink, and possessions.

This is the road of excess,

Not the way of Tao.

 

(Tao, 53)

 

 

Yohaku in the Time of Our Lives

 

 

Like a Zen archer, to be effective we must be focused.

Our intention, like the arrow, must be aimed at one target,

one goal at a time.

When our minds are forcused, we cannot miss the mark.

 

 

The Importance of Planning

 

 

Like yang and yin, creative and reactive are two polarities:

one active, the other passive.

When we're creative, we choose how to structure our lives.

When we're reactive, life chooses for us.

 

 

Frame doors and windows for a house;

The openings make the house useful.

 

(Tao, 11)

 

 

Facing Tsunamis: The Tidal Waves in Life

 

 

"If I don't do it, will it still get done?"

 

 

Yohaku as Deviant Behavior

 

 

Chanoyu:

The Tea Ceremony and the Practice of Yohaku

 

 

Together all these sensations focus the mind.

Here is tadaima—only now.

 

 

The Power of Silence

 

 

Those who know do not speak.

Those who speak do not know.

 

(Tao, 56)

 

 

Creating your practice of Yohaku

 

 

The greatest virtue seems unreal,

And strength of character appears like folly.

Great space has no boundaries.

The greatest skill is developed gradually,

The greatest music rarely heard.

The great Tao is without form,

Elusive, undefinable,

Yet the source of all life.

 

(Tao, 41)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dreher, Diane. The Tao of Personal Leadership. Harper Collins Publishers. New York. 1997.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 to be continued...