When elders of great virtues advise us how to deal with others, they will always say, "Low profile."
Keeping a low profile means humility, respect, a friendly gesture, and courtesy. However, a low profile is not easily cultivated and takes years of practice to achieve. With the cultivation of a low profile, we gain a lot of convenience in dealing with people and situations.
Keeping a low profile is not simply kowtowing all the time. When we need to make a stand for our morals, we must stand tall and hold our head high because it is just as important to do so. Yen Ying of the Epoch of Spring and Autumn was only five feet tall. Because he treated everyone with humility, he appeared smaller. Once he was on a mission in the Qin Kingdom, the officials there only opened a small door to receive him. Yen refused to enter and said, "I learned that when on a mission to a large kingdom, I walk through a large door and only use a small door when visiting a dog kingdom. The Qin Kingdom is large; how can I walk through a dog door?" Qin's officials had no choice but to open the large door for him.
Everything in this world that is mature always appears in "low profile." For instance, when wheat has ripened and fruits are fully-grown, they always droop and hang low. Weeping willows are gentle and drape low, so even when the wind and rain blow hard on them, they do not break. This only illustrates that for any matter or any person, if we have flexibility and keep a low profile, we will benefit.
Countries like Switzerland and Sweden do not engage in war. By keeping a low profile in the world and avoiding fighting, not only are they known as countries of peace, but also have an international reputation as good as the large countries.
As the sayings go, "Empty bottles make the most sound," and "Oceans are quiet while brooks gurgle." Those who are not truly learned or cultivated are always making their presence felt and their voice heard as they strut about in arrogance. On the other hand, the truly learned are always keeping a low profile anywhere they go. Others can appreciate their morals, cultivation, and greatness in their low profiles.
Someone wanted to build a house that is only five feet high. The architect explained, "It is not easy to build a house five feet high and nobody does that anyway." The person replied, "I am the one who wants one built." The architect again said, "It impossible to enter or stand up in a five feet high house." The person answered, "If I keep a low profile, I can save a lot of building costs. Why are you worrying about me?"
Racers of cycling tournaments all stoop as low as possible during the race because a low profile will reduce resistance. Runners start off on their running track by stooping down, waiting for the signal to charge ahead. As the saying goes, "High trees attract the wind but drooping branches remain tough." People may hold their heads high or low in life and speak in a loud or soft voice. We usually prefer people who are soft spoken and keep a low profile, and we want to make connections with them. They put others at ease, making it easy for people to like them and be close to them.