The Tao of Agile
The Tao Te Ching, the book by Lao Tzu that is the foundation of Taoism, starts by stating that the Tao that can be spoken of is not the Tao. In the Tao Te Ching, Lao Tzu attempts to point at something that cannot be grasped, a mindset. The same goes for the Agile Manifesto. The rules and principles of Agile are not Agile, they point to Agile. Agile is not a set of rules and principles but a mindset. The rules and principles merely point to that mindset. Agile ways of working are not about the rules and principles but about the mindset. Agile ways of working even have processes and rituals on top of the rules and principles. Agile ways of working are not about the rituals. The rituals point to the rules, the rules point to the principles, the principles point to the mindset. The rituals, the rules, the principles are a way to get to the mindset. In Taoism they say that Taoism is the way to Tao and once Tao, the mindset, has been established within, Taoism must be discarded. The same goes for Agile. Once the Agile mindset is established, the rituals, rules and principles are no longer required. Performing the rituals can distract from the mindset. Following the rules can distract from the mindset.