Tag Archives: Confucius

A Thousand-Mile Journey

A stone sculpture of Lao Tzu, located north of Quanzhou at the foot of Mount Qingyuan in East China. Thanks to Creative Commons for use of this photo. The statue is about 1,000 years old.

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”



Lau Tzu

This simple teaching tells us any endeavor, adventure, plan or fulfillment of a dream, begins with a first step.

The saying is from Chapter 4 of the Tao Te Ching, a Chinese philosophical and religious text said to be written by 6th Century BC philosopher Lauzi, whom we identify today as the Lau Tzu.

A contemporary of Confucius, arguably the most famous of Eastern philosophers and widely regarded as the greatest wise man, it is said Lau Tzu and Confucius met several times. Lau Tzu was the elder.

We dream of doing great things but don’t commit to action because of risk, embarrassment or potential failure, so we continue to live our lives in a state of what could have beenism.

Take that first step, and suddenly, potentially, the dream becomes reality, the plan is realized, the problem solved.

Or not.

Sometimes we fail, and then we must learn to take the next first step on a new path.

David Madrid

Depiction of Lauzi, known popularly as Lau Tzu, in E. T. C. Werner’s “Myths and Legends of China.” LauTzu is said to be a 6th century BC philosopher. It is said he authored the Tao Te Ching, the foundation of Taoism.

David Madrid.

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