Waking up to Wisdom
In Stillness and Community

A Guide To Life's Turning Points

--by Brian Browne-Walker (Oct 21, 2013)

Progress is made in steps, not in leaps. Move only as far as the opening allows. Remain neutral and tolerant of adversity. When in doubt, remain still.

By accepting things as they are and not making fruitless comparisons to the situations of others, or some imagined ideal, one engages the power of the Creative.

Though outer conditions appear unpromising, success is possible if you look faithfully for the good in others, yourself, and the situation.
It is a time for moderation in everything. Moderation of enthusiasm keeps you balanced.

Moderation of despair deepens your understanding.

Accept natural limitations. When there is an opening, go forward with balance.

When the way is closed, withdraw willingly into stillness.

Do not enter rashly into a conflict, stand quietly in the center and keep your balance.  This enables a true and lasting resolution to be found.

Shock frightens us, and at first we are convinced that it is bad. When we learn the lesson that it has come to teach, we are thankful for it.

Restless effort undermines one’s interests. It is unwise to charge repeatedly at a closed door. Withdraw into stillness and accept both the challenges and the blessings of the day.

The difficulty is coming to a close, but only if one is firm against harshness, doubt, and despair. Help only comes when there is room for it to enter.

One who gives up a stubborn and harsh way of acting will not regret it. No harm comes if you soften now.

Abandon ambitions, anxieties, and agendas. What is necessary and worthwhile arises from the stillness within.

A true change of heart is possible when we accept the necessity of adversity. Peace comes when we discontinue the strivings of the ego.

Look not at the outward situation, but at the effects of your own thoughts and actions.

Through self-contemplation and self-correction, you arrive at a proper understanding.

Remain patient until the Creative does its work. Modesty will bring greater rewards than the aggressive maneuverings of the ego.

The solution to every situation is always available. By remaining open, innocent, and moderate, you allow the Creative to aid you. Do less, not more.

-- Brian Browne-Walker, excerpted from, "The I Ching or Book of Changes: A Guide to Life's Turning Points"

Add Your Reflection:

Send me an email when another comment is posted on this passage.
Name: Email:

Previous Reflections:

On Oct 18, 2013 Jagdish P Dave wrote:

 I feel centered when I am balanced. I feel balanced when i pause and not let myself  be swept away by  the pull and push of my desires and insistences. A simple example in my everyday living is eating. I have prostate cancer. I know cancer cells thrive on sugar. I enjoy eating sweet food especially when it is done with love and offered with love. There are two sweets-the food and the love. Instead of reaching out to grab the food, I pause and take 5 to 10 breaths to be centered. I thank the sever for offering me the delicious sweet food and gently put it aside. I apply the same stance when it comes to communicating with others and relating to others. The insistence on being dogmatically right and always right with no room in between is a sure way of causing pain and suffering within me and without me. Remaining mindful of the gestalt of myself has been very helpful to me for living with ease and joy.

Jagdish P Dave

On Oct 18, 2013 Conrad P Pritscher wrote:

 Brian is very insightful and I agree with much of what he said. At relatively old age I am just beginning to learn moderation.. I saw a great video today – – "I Am" by someone named Shadyac, a movie director who had much and then his attitude changed to be more moderate. I thought it was so great that I thought I would buy a copy on Amazon. It may have been immoderate me to order four copies instead of one. I recommend this to all readers of since the message of "I Am" is what we frequently read here. The message in movie form is more powerful than in words alone. Thanks for the opportunity to respond. Warm and kind regards to everyone

On Oct 19, 2013 david doane wrote:

For me, "do less, not more" is a practice that I am still learning.  I'm good at overdoing, and it could be when I am making a point to someone or building something (and using more nails than necessary) or rewriting something or exercising or eating or drinking or most anything.  There is wisdom in knowing when to stop.  As Mary Poppins said, "Enough is as good as a feast."  In speaking or helping, less leaves something for the receiver to do, and more than enough is disrespectful.  Less seems appreciated while more is resisted.  Less is digested while more is overload.  Less is remembered while more is forgotten.  And if I go on, I'll go beyond less, if I haven't already.  Moderation in all things seems to be a related wisdom.  It's the middle way.  As Goldilocks learned, not too much and not too little, but just right.  I think moderation requires heeding internal and external signals and requires discipline.  What has helped me regarding moderation of both enthusiasm and despair is knowing that nothing lasts, knowing my control is very limited, and there are always tradeoffs.  Lows become highs and highs become lows.  On the other hand, and I think very important,  moderation can be boring.  Moderation in all things including in moderation seems wise to me.  It's important to enjoy the ups and downs, enjoy the ride, live.  The Buddhists say it's important to get on the horse, and it's important to get off the horse.  That's also moderation. 

On Oct 21, 2013 Viren Shah wrote:

Total control or freedom creates imbalance. Only due moderation can keep one balanced. To exercise moderation, one should have wisdom. 

On Oct 21, 2013 Deborah wrote:

 I too just tonight watched that same film, "I Am" and was very provoked by it, in a very good way. And the most recent science and the revelations about the relation of body to brain, anticipating before something actualizes, group cooperative mind in the animal kingdom - and ours... Highly recommend.  And these selections above are apropos. Great appreciation _/i\_

On Oct 22, 2013 Venkata ramani wrote:

  I have been trying to do more and more but couldn't cope with the stress. Now I have started to do more of less work and I feel now comfotable and satisfied!

On Oct 22, 2013 Mani wrote:

With due respect to Brian Browne-Walker, I felt that the Creative has done its work in this excerpt in this reflection. It is subtle yet relentless in yielding meaning to me. Not a word extra or a proposition out of place - just words and sentence structuring skillfully used to convey just enough and no more.  I am reminded of the Bruce Lee's character in the movie "Enter the dragon" where midway thru the movie he is captured and jailed by automatic shutters - When it happens he just sits in the middle of the room cross-legged and waits for the adversary to make the next move. Do less and not more - doesnt mean be lazy or disengage from action but be fully be aware and let things emerge. Dont strive to open the bud to a flower and yet tend to plant. Let the Creative thru you unfold to the world outward.

On Oct 22, 2013 Jyoti wrote:

 This is a practice, daily, hourly, by the moments. Only then can it serve in life's turning points. I had a restless mother who called me lazy for doing less. At work, I was considered a workaholic for I did a lot more than most. I simply do what comes through me easily. I am neither lazy nor a workaholic. I am simply aware that I have some gifts that allow me to contribute to do my share for the world. I am merely an instrument played by the deep nature within and without, connected and in harmony.

On Oct 22, 2013 Bruce Preville wrote:

 Not as much about changing oneself, or of turning one's course, but of pausing and truing oneself to the currents of life, of seeing oneself as "merely an instrument, being played by the deep nature within and without, connected, and in harmony."
Takes out the struggle, the trying, which leaves one in alignment with the natural flow, engaged and at peace.

On Oct 22, 2013 david doane wrote:

 I like that phrase "to do more of less" -- I would do well to do more of less.  Thanks.  Dave

On Oct 22, 2013 aj wrote:

 Wow!  So very true!  Blessings, thanks and love (in moderation) my friend,  

On Oct 22, 2013 Jagdish P dave wrote:

 All recommendations deserve contemplation. I apply those that resonate with me. I like the one that says be still. I like to pause before transacting. When I do not give that space within me,  I react rather than respond. I also am trying to be moderate in all walks of my life and value the simplicity. I add on step in working on my disturbing thoughts and feelings. I mindfully let them come and process. It is good self work for me and it enhances the quality of my transactions with other people. 

Jagdish P dave

On Oct 22, 2013 Lam wrote:

 To disturbing thoughts and feelings, we all must cling to last week's reading, to have them but NOT hold them.  
Yesterday, I had a particularly bad day with "ill thoughts/feelings".  God put me to bed last early last eve and woke me, this morn, with renewed energy and perspective.  
The Lord is with you, J . . . Always with you.

On Oct 22, 2013 Ganoba wrote:

 Life is a continuous process. This is obvious when we observe continuously, all the time, in all situations.
Since our observing is off and on, life appears to be a batch process. Then there would be shocks and challenges and closed doors and so on.
Just be observant and aware all the time. Be mind full. That's all.
Life is an automatic, self regulating process.
It is on auto-pilot.

On Oct 23, 2013 shubha wrote:

Thank you.
This is exactly what I needed to read when I read it.
And exactly what I needed to share when I shared it.
Thank you.

On Oct 23, 2013 Bharat wrote:

Thank you.
Many many days of  cloudiness got perfect tool to bring clarity.  Of course, as reading says I need to believe in stillness for mud to settle down and clarity to surface.
Once again thanks for throwing light on my darkness which was about to turn in to despair!
thank you, Thank you, Thank you.......

On Oct 23, 2013 Boom wrote:

 Thank YOU!  Always tucked in my heart,  Angels abound.

On Oct 23, 2013 Me wrote:

 I love you!  

On Nov 9, 2016 Paul wrote:

 Build a Better World

"Build a Better World", said God and I asked, "How?"
"The world is such a vast place and so complicated now."
"And, I'm so small and helpless, there's nothing I can do."
But, God in all his wisdom said,
"Just build a better you."

This is my mantra in times of doubt and strife. It has helped me from prison to palace and I am all the more better because of it.