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Book Review: The Great Way of All Beings (Renderings of LaoTzu)

By Paul Ferrini

The Great Way: We listen for it, yet its note can’t be heard. We look intently for it, yet its image can’t be seen. Although it has no beginning, it leads us back to our original nature. Although it has no end, it helps us come to completion.

The Great Way of All Beings: Renderings of Lao Tsu is composed of two different versions of Lao Tzu’s masterful scripture the Tao Te Ching. Part one, River of Light, is an intuitive, spontaneous rendering of the material that captures the spirit of the Tao Te Ching, but does not presume to be a close translation.

Part two is a more conservative translation of the Tao Te Ching that attempts as much as possible to stay with the words and images used in the original text. Part one uses the metaphor of the river to convey the Taoist emphasis on spontaneity and surrender to the flow of life as it unfolds. In part two, however, a different water metaphor arises. It is not the river moving with confidence toward the sea, but water flowing inward, forming a quiet lake surrounded by pine trees, or a pond gleaming in the moonlight. It is water moving toward stillness, toward the gateway of “the mysterious female.”

The words and images used in part one are more contemporary. They leap out from the center to explore how the wisdom of the Tao touches us today. By contrast, the words and images of part two turn inward toward the center, offering a more feminine, receptive version of the material.

“I study it like a bible.” Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

“Authentic, delightful and wise. It reconnects to the Spirit Within, to that place where even our deepest wounds can be healed.” Joan Borysenko

“Shows us the way to walk lightly with joy on planet earth.” Gerald Jampolsky

“A must read for all people who are ready to take responsibility for their own healing.” John Bradshaw



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