Walking to Riolobos – Chapter 50

We are walking to Riolobos.

It starts raining.

I read Chapter 50 of the Tao te Ching (translated by Steven Mitchell):

“The Master gives himself up
to whatever the moment brings.”

“He knows that he is going to die,
and he has nothing left to hold on to”

It is raining harder.

“no illusions in his mind,
no resistances in his body.”

“He doesn’t think about his actions;
they flow from the core of his being.”

“If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is,” Karen says. We do not know that we have missed the turn to Riolobos. We were following the arrows and do not realize that the route to Riolobos was not marked with arrows at the fork.

“He holds nothing back from life;
therefore he is ready for death,

as a man is ready for sleep
after a good day’s work.”


We have no internet connection and cannot get guidance from Google Maps.

Eventually I realize my error and turn around.

We return to the cutoff for Riolobos. The position of the sign and the lack of arrows indicationing that the way to Riolobos was to the left made me think that Riolobos was behind the sign. There were arrows behind the sign, suggesting that this was the way to Riolobos Apparently the way to Riolobos is an “alternative” route — which goes to the left (unmarked by arrows at this place). The “alternate” route does not go straight (as suggested by the sign).

We reach Riolobos — my navigational error made us walk three extra miles.

Lao tsu suggests living in the present moment — a person who does this is not concerned by death.

Karen says, “Pay attention.”

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