Many traditional societies have venerated the role of the sage, but perhaps none more clearly than the Chinese. Indeed, in traditional Chinese society it is assumed that a person does not have the capacity for true wisdom and leadership until the years have bestowed the benefits arising from experiencing such seeming polarities as success and failure, gain and loss, love and fear, sickness and health, and life and death.
The Taoist sage, Lao-Tzu, living over 2600 years ago, wrote a classic book of wisdom, The Tao Te Ching, in which he presents the sage as the model for a life of spirited freedom, contentment, wisdom, and playfulness. It has been translated into hundreds of languages including dozens of English versions. In 81 short poetic chapters of advice, Lao Tzu holds up the sage, sometimes called "master" or "wise person," as the essence of humanity.
In his 2000 book The Sage’s Tao Te Ching, William Martin reformulated the heart of each of Lao Tzu’s poetic wisdom chapters into a reflection and insight for the older person in today’s swiftly changing society. For this e-course in Spirituality & Practice's Elder Spirituality Project, you will receive selections from The Sage’s Tao Te Ching, along with brief comments and practice suggestions by William Martin that will help you discover the quality of "sage-ness" that already exists at the heart of your being. This is a warm and practical way to explore and experience this wisdom tradition.
William Martin is the perfect leader for this focused study of the Tao for elders. He has been exploring the wisdom of this tradition for 40 years and over the past 13 years has written popular books that express the message of the Tao for specific audiences: The Parent’s Tao Te Ching, The Couple’s Tao Te Ching, The Sage’s Tao Te Ching, A Path and a Practice, The Tao of Forgiveness, and with his spouse Nancy, The Caregiver’s Tao Te Ching. He is profiled at S&P as a Living Spiritual Teacher.
Today's generation of sages is facing the most important role of our lives as we attempt to harvest our experiences, gather our courage, access our wisdom, and prepare to live and serve with the compassion and grace so needed in our individual lives and in our waiting world. We are the beginnings of a critical mass of older people who will begin a revolution that will make the coming age, not the Information Age, as we have been led to believe, but the Age of Wisdom.
Join us as we discover how the ancient wisdom of the Tao can inspire and influence our times.
(4 CEHs for Chaplains available.)
(choose your own start date and frequency)