"Psychology of Lack" (excerpt) Tao of Abundance — Laurence Boldt

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----Drawing by Greg Joens

The dynamics of the psychology of lack go like this: Simultaneous to the formation of the individual ego there arises a profound sense of lack, a feeling of separation from everything else in life. This sense of separation brings a feeling of contraction and a sense of incompleteness, which we try to mitigate through mental, physical, and emotional attachments. The perceived need to defend and expand our attachments, in turn, creates a feeling of struggle.

Struggle brings resentment, ingratitude, and withholding, which rob “us of joy” and keep the energy from flowing freely in our lives. This leads us away from the path of our inborn destinies. Instead of following our own paths, we crave the approval and attention of others. This craving for approval, in turn, produces competitive hostility and envy. Envy, in turn, provokes greed, which agitates our minds and sends us on the mad chase that today we call the "rat race." In the process, we lose the ability to appreciate the simple enjoyments that come with leisure. Ultimately, this leads to a sense of chaos and confusion that obfuscates our innate intelligence and robs us of our capacity to appreciate the beauty in life.

On the other hand, a psychology of abundance flows naturally from the Tao, the way of life. Moving from the unity of the Tao, from the experience of oneness with all of life, we receive the natural abundance of the universe with ease in a spirit of gratitude and joy. Thus, the energy flows freely in our lives, and we fulfill our innate destinies. Recognizing the innate power and dignity of all of life, we live in harmony with it and its natural cycles. Respecting our humanity above any outer goal or reward, we cultivate the sense of leisure and peace necessary to appreciate the beauty and order inherent in life, and thus, allow it to express itself through us in all we do. 

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