Yen Hui asked a question of Confucius.
'Once I was crossing the deep water at Shang-shen, and the ferryman handled the boat as though he were daemonic. I asked whether one can lear to handle a boat. "Yes," he said. "A good swimmer picks it up quickly; as for a diver, he would handle the boat deftly even if he had never seen one before." I questioned him further but that was all he had to say. May I ask what he meant?'
'A good swimmer picks it up quickly because he forgets the water. As for a diver, he would handle a boat deftly even if he had never seen one before, because he looks at the depths as at dry land, at the capsizing of a boat as at his carriage sliding backwards. Though ten thousand prospects of capsizing or sliding go on spreading out before him, they cannot intrude into the place where he dwells. Why would he be ill at ease anywhere?
'Play for tiles, and you're skillful; play for belt-buckles, and you lose confidence; play for gold, and you're flustered. Your skill is the same as ever, but if you are attaching importance to something you are giving weight to what is outside you, and whoever gives weight to what is outside him is inwardly clumsy.'