Buddha was approaching a village. The King of that village
called his ministers and asked whether it would be in keeping with
his dignity to receive Buddha at the entrance of his kingdom. The
Prime minister promptly handed him his resignation.
"What has happened?" the king asked in surprise.
The Prime minister said, "The very question is unbecoming of you. I can no longer work under you."
"But I have not refused to go and see him;" the king pleaded. "I only wanted your opinion as to whether it was befitting for a king to welcome a beggar."
The old minister replied, "That is the splendour of a king. And remember, Oh king, that he who enters your town now as a beggar was a king once upon a time. He left his kingdom to become a beggar; you still hold onto your kingdom. You are not of his caliber. He is a beggar who is worthy to be a king; you are a king who is worthy only to be a beggar."
He who becomes as nothing, nobody, is worthy of being the topmost. He who is nothing is everything.
Therefore, Lao Tzu says:
If we think over this we shall be perplexed. People should love
and respect the superlative king, but Lao Tzu says it is the second
category of kings who gets love and respect from his subjects. This
is because he has to do something in order to earn the love and
acknowledgment of the people. And the people love and respect him
for this very reason. They are not even conscious of the king who is
empty, who is void within himself, for he does nothing. A lot takes
place through him, but that is not felt by the people.
In his last sutra Lao Tzu goes on to say more about the shunya person - the egoless king.
The superlative man never claims credit for what he does. He does
not even declare that he is doing it. No one knows the doer behind
the action. Then, when nothing is known of the doer, every man comes
forward and declares he was the doer.
The less superior receives love, respect and praise. If you wish for all these, you have to make your presence known. And that also in a very nice manner - in such a manner that people should praise you, love you. But a man who wants this has to climb down from the plane of inaction to the plane of action. He now has involved himself in action, even if it be love.
Generally we are not aware of love. How do you know that someone loves you? The person must declare his love verbally or make a present to his beloved. He has to perform some act to express his feelings. If a person loves you but shows no outward expression of any kind, you will never know of his love.
Love can only be known when it is aggressive. The more aggressive a person, the more love he can express. The quiet lover goes unnoticed because in order to experience serene love, your consciousness must also rise to that level to receive the message of love. We can only grasp violent love. Hence, the more aggressive a person, the more ardent the lover.
It is always the second category of kings who be acclaimed by the people, for then only can people be aware of them. Love is also a happening that is lower than emptiness. There is one love that is within the void also, but then it cannot be felt.