Wu Wei of White Water by Chuang-tzu
© Richard  Culpeper

The great waterfall of Lu Canyon is thousands of feet high, with a halo of mist that can be seen for many miles.  Nothing survives the violent waters at its foot.  Yet once K'ung Fu-tzu saw an old man swim the tempest.  K'ung-Fu-tzu and his retainers ran with ropes to rescue him, but when they descended to the floor of the canyon they found the man sitting on a large boulder, quietly singing.

K'ung Fu-tzu exclaimed, "You cannot be alive!  What are your powers to allow you to do what you have done?"  The old man turned and smiled, "I am just a man, but I began to learn as a boy, and I continue to practise.  I flow with the water, going up, down and around with it.  I forget myself and do not struggle against forces far beyond my control.  Then I use my meagre abilities in the moments when the water and I share the same path."