A Letter to My Students in the Midst of a Year of Unknowns

[This is a letter I wrote for my students who will start classes this week. However, I decided there were important lessons we could all take from it, so I'm sharing it with you here.]

“A man is born gentle and weak; at his death he is hard and stiff. All things, including the grass and trees, are soft and pliable in life; dry and brittle in death. Stiffness is thus a companion of death; flexibility a companion of life. An army that cannot yield will be defeated. A tree that cannot bend will crack in the wind. The hard and stiff will be broken; the soft and supple will prevail.” Lao-Tzu