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TAO TE CHING 42: Yi Wei


TEXT

道生一,一生二,二生三,三生万物。

万物负阴而抱阳,
冲气以為和。

人之所恶,唯孤、寡、不谷,
而王公以為称。

故物或损之而益,
或益之而损。

人之所教,
我亦教之。

强梁者不得其死,
吾将以為教父。

TRANSLATION

Tao give rise to one, one gives rise to two, two gives rise to three, three gives rise to a multitude.

Everyone puts yin behind and embr

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TAO TE CHING 41:Seeming paradoxes

TEXT

上士闻道,勤而行之;
中士闻道,若存若亡;
下士闻道,大笑之。
不笑不足以为道。

故建言有之:
明道若昧,进道若退,夷道若纇。
上德若谷;大白若辱;
广德若不足;建德若偷;
质真若渝。

大方无隅;大器晚成;
大音希声;大象无形;
道隐无名。
夫唯道,善贷且成。


TRANSLATION

上士闻道,勤而行之;
When a superior person hears of the Tao, he diligently puts it into practice.
中士闻道,若存若亡;
When a middling

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TAO TE CHING 40: Wu

TEXT

反者道之动,
弱者道之用。
天下万物生于有,
有生于无

 

TRANSLATION

Moved by Tao one returns
Used by Tao one is meek
All beings under Heaven are born from desire
Yet desire is born from emptiness.

COMMENTARY

Some translators render the last line “something is born from nothin

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TAO TE CHING 39: Highest Renown is No Renown

TEXT

昔之得一者,天得一以清;
地得一以宁;神得一以灵;
谷得一以盈,万物得一以生;
候王得一以为天一正。

其致之也,
谓天无以清,将恐裂;
地无以宁,将恐废;
神无以灵,将恐歇;
谷无以盈,将恐竭;
万物无以生,将恐灭;
候王无以正,将恐蹶。

故贵以贱为本,高以下为基。
是以候王自称孤、寡、不谷。
此非以贱为本邪?非乎?
故至誉无誉。

是故不欲琭琭如玉,珞珞如石。

TRANSLATION

昔之得一者,天得一以清
In the past things were at one (with the Tao) ; Hea

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TAO TE CHING 38: The Best Te is not Te-ious

TEXT

上德不德,是以有德;
下德不失德,是以无德。
上德无为而无以为
下德无为而有以为。
上仁为之而无以为;
上义为之而有以为。
上礼为之而莫之应,
则攘臂而扔之。

故失道而后德,
失德面后仁,
失仁而后义,失义而后礼。

夫礼者,忠信之薄,而乱之首。
前识者,道之华,而愚之始。
是以大丈夫处其厚,
不居其薄;处其实,
不居其华。故去彼取此。


TRANSLATION

The best virtue (Te) is not virtuous and thus has virtue.
Lesser virtue is not

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TAO TE CHING 37: Unnamed Simplicity


TEXT

道常无为而无不为。
候王若能守之,
万物将自化。

化而欲作,
吾将镇之以无名之朴,
镇之以无名之朴,
夫将不欲。
不欲以静,天下将自定。


TRANSLATION

Tao is always wu wei and nothing fails to get done
If rulers can hold to it
all living things will transform of themselves.

The urge to change and meddle
I shall subdue by m

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TAO TE CHING 36: Realpolitik

TEXT

将欲歙之,必固张之;
将欲弱之,必固强之;
将欲废之,必固兴之;
将欲取之,必固与之。
是谓微明,柔弱胜刚强。
鱼不可脱于渊
国之利器不可以示人。


TRANSLATION

If you want to gather, first spread out
If you want to weaken, first strengthen
If you want to abolish, first foster
If you want to take, first give
This is c

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TAO TE CHING 35: The elephant

TEXT

执大象,天下往。
往而不害,安平太。
乐与饵,过客止,
道之出口,淡乎其无味,
视之不足见,听之不足闻,
用之不足既。


TRANSLATION
Attain the great principle and the world under Heaven goes along;
goes along but without harm, in complete peace and calm.
Music and food will induce a passing traveller to stop,
but

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TAO TE CHING 34: The branching river


TEXT
大道汜兮,其可左右
万物恃之以生而不辞,
功成而不有。

衣养万物而不为主,
常无欲,可名于小;
万物归焉而不为主,可名为大。
以其终不自为大,
故能成其大。


TRANSLATION
Great Tao is a stream that divides and reforms, now left, now right.
All living things rely upon it to grow and thrive and it is there for them.
Good work accomplis

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TAO TE CHING 33: Those who endure


TEXT

知人者智,自知者明。
胜人者有力,自胜者强。
知足者富,强行者有志,
不失其所者久,死而不亡者寿。


TRANSLATION

To understand others is wise, but to know oneself is radiant.
One who wins victories is powerful, but one who conquers himself is stronger.
The contented are rich.
Those who use force are

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TAO TE CHING 32: Know when to stop

TEXT

道常无名,朴。
虽小,天下莫能臣。
候王若能守之,万物将自宾。
天地相合,以降甘露,
民莫之令而自均。

始制有名,
名亦既有,夫亦将知止,
知止可以不殆。
譬道之在天下,
犹川谷之于江海


TRANSLATION

The constant Tao has no name; it just is.
Although unassuming, there is none in the land under Heaven who can subject it.
When leaders regard it, all

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TAO TE CHING 31: Weapons are ominous

TEXT

夫兵者,不祥之器,
物或恶之,故有道者不处。

君子居则贵左,
用兵则贵右。
兵者不祥之器,
非君子之器,
不得已而用之,
恬淡为上,
胜而不美,
而美之者,
是乐杀人。

夫乐杀人者,
则不可得志于天下矣。

吉事尚左,凶事尚右。

偏将军居左,上将军居右。
言以丧礼处之。
杀人之众,以悲哀莅之,
战胜以丧礼处之。


TRANSLATION
The implements of the soldiering man are inauspicious;
such things are harmful,
therefore the

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TAO TE CHING 30: Non-coercion


TEXT

以道佐人主者,
不以兵强天下,
其事好还。

师之所处,
荆棘生焉。
大军之后,
必有凶年。

善有果而已,
不敢以取强。

果而勿矜,
果而勿伐,
果而勿骄,
果而不得已,
果而勿强。

物壮则老,
是谓不道,
不道早已。

TRANSLATION

Use Tao to assist the rulers of the people.
Don’t use armies upon the land under Heaven,
that kind of thing rebounds.

Where armies camp
tho

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TAO TE CHING 29: Not grasping, not fixing

TEXT

将欲取天下而为之,
吾见其不得已。
天下神器,
不可为也,
不可执也。

为者败之,
执者失之。
是以圣人无为,
故无败,
故无失。
夫物或行或随;
或觑或吹;
或强或羸;
或载或隳。
是以圣人去甚、去奢、去泰

TRANSLATION

I see that if somebody acts desiring to possess the land under Heaven, he will never arrive at his goal.
It is the contrivance of

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TAO TE CHING 28: The Dark Wisdom

TEXT

知其雄,守其雌,为天下溪。
为天下溪,常德不离,复归于婴儿。

知其白,守其黑,为天下式,
为天下式,常德不忒,复归于无极。

知其荣,守其辱,为天下谷。
为天下谷,常德乃足,
复归于朴。

朴散则为器,圣人用之,
则为官长,故大制不割

TRANSLATION

Know the masculine, keep to the feminine,
Here under Heaven, be as a ravine.
Being as a ravine here under Heaven,
do

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TAOISM - AN INTRODUCTION

TAOISM IN HISTORICAL CONTEXT

Taoism is one of the three great religions of China, along with Buddhism and Confucianism. It is a religion and philosophy that grew up in the warring States period that preceded the first unification of Chine under the Q

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TAO TE CHING 27: Following the Light

TEXT
善行,无辙迹;
善言,无瑕谪;
善数,不用筹策;
善闭,无关楗而不可开;
善结,无绳约而不可解。

是以圣人常善救人,故无弃人;
常善救物,故无弃物。
是谓袭明。

故善人者,不善人之师;
不善人者,善人之资。
不贵其师,不爱其资,
虽智大迷,
是谓要妙。

TRANSLATION
Good actions leave no trace;
Good speech leaves no blame;
Good plans do not need stick and carrot;
Good c

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TAO TE CHING 26: The Weight of Responsibility

TEXT

重为轻根,静为躁君。
是以君子终日行不离辎重,
虽有荣观,燕处超然。
奈何万乘之主,而以身轻天下?
轻则失根,躁则失君。


TRANSLATION

By seriousness frivolity can have a root.
By calm impatience.can have a master.
Thus the nobleman travels all day long
never leaving the heavy wagons.
Although one have a

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TAO TE CHING 25: The Mother of Heaven and earth

TEXT

有物混成,先天地生。
寂兮寥兮,独立而不改,
周行而不殆,可以为天地母。
吾不知其名,强字之曰:道,
强为之名曰:大。
大曰逝,逝曰远,远曰反。
故道大,天大,地大,人亦大。
域中有四大,而人居其一焉。
人法地,地法天,天法道,
道法自然。

TRANSLATION

有物混成,先天地生
There is something confusedly formed,
born before heaven and earth.

寂兮寥兮,独立而不改,
silent, empty, standing alone an

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