Not Even Wrong – Simplicity, Patience, Compassion

My very own flag, for my very own shithouse..

February 2015
Dubai, Dubai International Airport Hotel

“I have just three things to teach:
Simplicity, patience, compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and in thoughts,
You return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
You accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
You reconcile all beings in the world.”
– Lao Tzu

This Dubai airport hotel sure does shine when it comes to practicality. It’s located right next to the departure gate of my early morning flight, and so it will allow me a few hours of rest before I set off on another seven hour flight taking me to my final destination: Saigon, Vietnam.

Practical or not, this hotel does have a rather eerie claustrophobic vibe going on. It feels like how I’m imagining visiting the international space station might feel like. If there was no one around. And if you didn’t really know if you were welcome there. And there were weird noises…

But never mind that now.

So I’m about to embark on a journey. During these days of travel I have decided to explore those three words that Lao Tzu mentioned in the opening quote: Simplicity, Patience, Compassion. That quote has always resonated well with me, and I will use these days on the road to further explore why that is, and examine how these concepts might fit into the larger picture that is the book I’m writing.

One might say that the exploration of these words as concepts marks the beginning of a new direction for these writings. You see, up until now I’ve been occupying myself with the understanding of the nature of these various aspects of work that I’ve chosen to highlight. As we’re starting to establish what kind of reality we’re all subjected to, I’d like to think we have reached some common understanding of the context and the challenges that this reality present to us.

The natural next step is to explore how we might successfully navigate this landscape. And so, it is my hope that these core concepts of Simplicity, Patience and Compassion can serve as guiding lights and help us create useful heuristics, that can guide us in our efforts towards making work a more humane, joyous and successful endeavor.

Oh, and perhaps you noticed the logotype up in the corner? This is an early version of the visual magic that will support this work. Like my old karate sensei George once remarked – commenting on the inflation of karate styles: “Bah, every shithouse wants its own flag…”.

Grumpy old George. But he was right, don’t you know? And I do want my own flag.

The logo has been developed by the illustrious Daniel Feldt, and I’m very happy, humble and proud to have such a talented artist and genuinely kind and generous person by my side – helping me create my very own flag, for my very own shithouse.

Earlier post on Not even Wrong

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