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You Can’t Hurry the Tao

Have you noticed that the more you hurry, the less you get done? For example, try rushing through a shower after heavy exercise and notice how your body continues to sweat profusely. Then try showering your mind down, relaxing, and allowing the water to course over you—and notice how your body feels clean without sweating in precisely the same amount of time that you used in your hurry-up mode. Even if your ego doesn’t grasp it, this is the truth: Everything is on time under heaven’s net.

Today after rereading the 73rd verse of the Tao Te Ching, I decided to go for a one-hour “nonaction” walk to observe how everything under the net of heaven is working perfectly. I noticed the silent sun nourishing the land and providing light for us all. I stepped back and watched bees flitting back and forth between flowers, and stood there amazed by the invisible life force growing green bananas in a clump at the top of a tree. In all, I was just an observer of the Divine, invisible, silent, effortless Tao at work—realizing that while it’s in no hurry, it’s still getting everything done on time. Those green bananas will ripen in due course; but today I just loved the energy that creates, nourishes, and prepares them to appear for my breakfast someday!

Today I urge you to take a similar nonaction walk for an hour, and note how nothing slips through the net of heaven. It is heaven’s way to conquer without striving…It does not hurry, yet it completes everything on time.

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jona says:

Thanks for your positive messages and insights. You are a decent soul who has chosen to embrace the better side of life. I wish I could clone you. May your journey continue to inspire you and those you touch with your words. Words wield a tremendous power and you use them well. May love guide you always.

Lynne says:

Thank you for your years of service to others. I’ve read your works since the 80’s. I grew up in MI not far from your old neighborhood & graduated from Wayne State. I would see you & Marianne Williamson at the Unity Church (w/ Jack Bolan and White Eagle). Wonder how you are doing and praying for your health. Hope you are Happy Joyous & Free!

Lee-ann says:

Inside my new website I have offer this quote. “Inner Peace is about nurturing the present moment”

jamie says:

We have been given time to mature into those who can at any given moment in any given circumstance rest in now being whole. A focused and learned response in harmony with our environment. Thank you for recognizing and sharing connection with the time component, today.

Julianne Davidow says:

Having just returned to New York from Venice, Italy, where I’ve been living for a few years, I am trying to understand how to incorporate the way of life I’ve just left to the one I’m living now. There, people live more attentively in the day, here, everyone is rushing somewhere. Thank you for this post. One can be mindful anywhere.

Jackie says:

While sitting under the canopy watching the rain come down a beautiful finch perched himself on the railing and sang his beautiful song .After the rain I could smell the freshness in the air. I saw a robin giving himself a birdbath. He turned all the way around so that I could see him during the entire bathing process.

parvin says:

Nature is patient enough to give time for every thing to happen properly. Any intervention into the improvement process, could result a disaster. All mutation in different kinds of animals, plants, and human’s infants are mainly caused by human interference and human being’s impatience. we should obey the natural rules to reach the fulfilling.

parvin says:

each event involves constant and gradual improvements. Each step of improvement, needs time to happen and grow, to lead to the next step to occur. For example, for a snow flake to become one, some prerequisites are needed, such as low temperature, humidity, air pressure,….. and gravity. It seems simple, but it is very complicated.

anna says:

Surgeons tell me I MUST remove a dis-eased thyroid next week. All of me inside says NO.
Do I trust them to remove a little butterfly in my neck; or choose to let God heal her?
I simply do not know what to do.

anna says:

As well, prayers to the Mom and children w/o a home. Open wide the gates of Heaven to care & protect them.
Oh how we take things for granted. Abba holds you all so close. Much love.

Dennis says:

Well, Heaven gets to decide how long everything SHOULD take. So It’s really only marching to Its own drum.

George says:

I once believed that I had control over almost everything. Today, I understand that control over anything external is merely an illusion. To say that “Everything is on time under Heaven’s net.” is another way of relinquishing the illusion of control.

Rebecca says:

I wish you the best, will pray for the homeless mother of three especially, may something helpful come your way today yvette.

Jim Haley Port Washington WI says:

Precious Time! Don’t let it slip away by hurrying. Thanks Wayne! Namaste

Neil says:

Two Months ago, the simple act of no longer wearing my watch, changed my life. Having been a chronic clock watcher all my adult life, I realized that every day, I had the same 24 hrs. as everyone else in the world. Watching the clock all the time only caused stress in my life. Now life is my time piece.


Breathing connects our body with our soul, sincronizing us with the present moment. It is more what you get rid of than what you obtain.

Kyle Beckwermert says:

And it’s funny… the moment i let go of trying to be a good actor, was the day i became a good actor… It’s like — we already have everything we need for this journey and we need not fret, but just allow. And i dont mean be lazy and dont take action–but take action that connects you with this energy..

yvette says:

I love your messages, for decades….and drift here and there, right now, in the now, homeless, unemployed, how can I manage being a single mom of 3 boys to provide, I keep going, day to day…thank you

kam says:

How true as humans we believe we have little time, but we do as we are to under the net. Thank you

Kenneth says:

Go with the flow. How true. Thanks Wayne.

Diana, Fitness and Wellness Coach says:

The same would apply when we rush early morning going to work. Instead we can wake up few minutes earlier, enjoy the silence of the morning while taking a healthy breakfast, and on the road choose some inspiring music or one of your awesome Cds.No hurry, just letting everything go.
I think we can live a non hurry life whenever we choose to.

MariaJosep says:

Muchisimas gracias por tu FE, que alimenta mi FE. Namaste.

Latinascholar says:

I always need to remind myself that even if I work in crisis I don’t have to be in crisis. This same insight serves me well when I think about the next step in my career. Trying to control everything just reminds me how if I show up and see the signs, then I open myself up to the next step “under heaven’s net” as you just said. Gracias.

Tina says:

Just listened to your June 9th hayhouseradio show. I love you and the special way you help everyone. Keep feeling better! We are blessed to have you in our lives. – Tina

Jacques says:

Thank you, Dr. Dyer, for sharing your wisdom! Before I read this, I did go on a very peaceful walk along the pier this morning and you’re right, everything just works out in its own way – despite my opinion about how things should be going.

patti says:

Just returned from my daily yoga class your blog was an added treat to this absolutel gorgeous day. My 29 y.o. daughter leaves for Johanesburg South Africa today for 2 week stay to give medical treatment and try help stop child trafficing during the World Cup compition. Keep her in your good thoughts… God Bless Thanks Namaste’

Mucunda says:

Nonaction. Vast AS ALWAYS YOU ARE .

Bettina says:

This is wise and wonderful, as are you in your teaching. And it is perfect for me to read today. Thank you.

Valerie Curcuro, Life Coach says:

Only in the present, the now, do we really exist and can experience enlightenment. Moving meditation, a contemplative walk as you suggested is great advice especially to those of us caught up in the hurry of it all.