Lao Tzu Shares His Three Greatest Treasures
Tuesday Quotes are short explorations of music, life, and the daily endeavor of practicing classical guitar. Enjoy!
“I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures.”~ Lao Tzu
Our greatest treasures are simplicity, patience, and compassion? Is this true? or is this a fuzzy zen koan?
How do we apply this to our own guitar practice? How can this help now?
Simplicity: Not a full piece of music. Not a line. Not a measure. Just a note. One note, well played. Then the next.
Not dozens of exercises – just one exercise for now. Maybe another later.
Not all the scale shapes in every key – just one, with full attention on each movement.
Patience: Our current level and ability is fine. We shouldn’t be any better than we are. We shouldn’t have practiced any more last week than we did.
We can practice now. And tomorrow we can deal with tomorrow.
It’s not a race. It’s just guitar.
Compassion: We do our best. And our best differs from one day to the next.
Criticism, guilt, shame – these are all worse than useless. They are unnecessary and harmful.
Instead, we can speak to ourselves as we would small children we love. Understanding. Forgiving. Supportive.
Lao Tzu calls these three things our greatest treasure. And all come from within. All are choices we are free to make. They don’t require money, or time, or extra training. We can enjoy these now, here, today.