The Empty Boat
by Zhuangzi, 4th cent. BC
Should a boatman while crossing a river
Have an empty boat crash into his boat
Even if he is a man who is quick to anger
His anger will not rage.
Yet if he sees someone in that boat
He will yell and scream telling him
Get out of my way.
And if his yelling is not responded to
He will yell all the louder
And begin swearing and cursing.
All that just because someone is in the boat.
Yet if it were an empty boat
He would not be angry nor shouting.
If you are able to empty your own boat
That is empty yourself of yourself
During your time in the world
There will be no one opposing you
There will be no one out to harm you.