Lao Zi
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Chapter 24
He who stands on tiptoe is not steady.
He who doubles his stride cannot go far.
He who displays himself is not wise.
He who justifies himself is not prominent.
He who boasts of himself is not given any credit.
He who feels self-important is not fit for leadership.
From the perspective of the Dao,
These are like remnants of food and tumors of the body,
So disgusting that the one with the Dao stays away from them.
Likewise the sage knows himself but does not display himself.
He loves himself but does not feel self-important.
Hence, he rejects that and accepts this.

Chapter 25
There was something undifferentiated and all-embracing,
Which existed before Heaven and Earth.
Soundless and formless, it depends on nothing external
And stays inexhaustible.
It operates with a circular motion
And remains inextinguishable.
It may be considered the mother of all things under Heaven.
I do not know its name, and hence call it the Dao far-fetchedly.
If forced to give it another name, I shall call it the Great.
The Great is boundless and thus functioning everywhere.
It is functioning everywhere and thus becoming far-reaching
It is becoming far-reaching and thus returning to the original point.
Therefore the Dao is great. Heaven is great.
Earth is great.
And Man is also great.
There are four great things in the universe,
And Man is one of them.

Man follows the way of Earth.
Earth follows the way of Heaven.
Heaven follows the way of the Dao.
And the Dao follows the way of spontaneity.

Chapter 26

The heavy is the root of the light.
The tranquil is the lord of the hasty.
Therefore the sage travels all day
Without leaving behind his baggage cart.
Although he enjoys a magnificent and comfortable life,
He remains at leisure and without self-indulgence in it.
How is it that a king with ten thousand chariots
Governs his kingdom so lightly and hastily?
Lightness is sure to lose the root.
Hastiness is sure to lose the lord.

Chapter 27
He who is adept at traveling leaves no track or trace behind.
He who is adept at speaking makes no blemishes or flaws.
He who is adept at counting uses no tallies or counters.
He who is adept at shutting the door needs no bolts,
And yet it cannot be opened when shut.
He who is adept at binding things needs no strings,
And yet they cannot be untied when bound.

Chapter 28
He who knows the masculine and keeps to the feminine
Will become the ravine of the world.
Being the ravine of the world,
He will never depart from constant De,
But return to the state of infancy.
He who knows glory but keeps to disgrace
Will become the valley of the world.
Being the valley of the world,
He will be proficient in constant De
And return to the state of simplicity.
He who knows the white but keeps to the black
Will become the principle of the world.
Being the principle of the world,
He will possess constant De
And return to the state of ultimate infinity.
(When simplicity is broken up,
It is turned into vessels.
By using these vessels,
The sage becomes the head of officials.
Hence a perfect government is not carved out of artificiality.)


Chapter 1-4 | Chapter 5-12 | Chapter 13-18 | Chapter 19-23 | Chapter 24-28 | Chapter 29-35
Chapter 36-40 | Chapter 41-49 | Chapter 50-54 | Chapter 55-60 | Chapter 61-66
| Chapter 67-73 | Chapter 74-81 |


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