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NATURE
The Best Feelings in Nature

76.  Hard and Soft 

When man is born, he is tender and weak; 
   At death, he is hard and stiff. 
When the things and plants are alive, they are soft 
   and supple; 
When they are dead, they are brittle and dry. 
   Therefore hardness and stiffness are the companions of death, 
   And softness and gentleness are the companions of life. 

Therefore when an army is headstrong, it will lose in a battle. 
When a tree is hard, it will be cut down. 
   The big and strong belong underneath. 
   The gentle and weak belong at the 
top
 

77.  Bending the Bow 

The Tao (way) of Heaven, 
Is it not like the bending of a bow? 
   The top comes down and the bottom-end goes up, 
   The extra (length) is shortened, the insufficient (width) is expanded. 
It is the way of Heaven to take away from those that have too much 
And give to those that have not enough. 
Not so with man's way: 
   He takes from those that have not 
   And gives it as tribute to those that have too much. 
Who can have enough and to spare to give to the entire world? 
Only the man of Tao. 
Therefore the Sage acts, but does not possess, 
   Accomplishes but lays claim to no credit, 
   Because he has no wish to seem superior. 
 

78.  Nothing Weaker than Water 

There is nothing weaker than water 
But none is superior to it in overcoming the hard, 
For which there is no substitute. 
   That weakness overcomes strength 
   And gentleness overcomes rigidity, 
   No one does not know; 
   No one can put into practice. 

Therefore the Sage says: 
   "Who receives unto himself the calumny of the world 
   Is the preserver of the state. 
   Who bears himself the sins of the world 
   Is king of the world." 
Straight words seem crooked. 
 

79.  Peace Settlements 

Patching up a great hatred is sure to leave some hatred behind. 
How can this be regarded as satisfactory? 
Therefore the Sage holds the 
left tally
And does not put the guilt on the other party. 
the virtuous man is for patching up; 
The vicious is for 
fixing guilt
But "the 
way of Heaven is impartial; 
It sides only with the good man." 
 

80.  The Small Utopia 

(Let there be) a small country with a small population, 
Where the supply of goods are tenfold or hundredfold, 
   more than they can use. 
Let the people value their lives and not migrate far. 
   Though there be boats and carriages, 
      None be there to ride them. 
      Though there be armor and weapons, 
      No occasion to display them. 
Let the people again tie ropes for reckoning, 
   Let them enjoy their food, 
   Beautify their clothing, 
   Be satisfied with their homes, 
   Delight in their customs. 
The neighboring settlements overlook one another 
So that they can hear the barking of dogs and crowing 
   of cocks of their neighbors, 
And the people till the end of their days shall never 
   have been outside their country. 
 

81.  The Way of Heaven 

True words are not fine-sounding; 
   Fine-sounding words are not true. 
A good man does not argue; 
   he who argues is not a good man. 
the wise one does not know many things; 
   He who knows many things is not wise. 

The Sage does not accumulate (for himself). 
   He lives for other people, 
   And grows richer himself; 
   He gives to other people, 
   And has greater abundance. 

The Tao of Heaven 
   Blesses, but does not harm. 
The Way of the Sage 
   Accomplishes, but does not contend.  
 

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 18:10  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

57.  The Art of Government 

Rule a kingdom by the Normal. 
Fight a battle by (
abnormal) tactics of surprise. 
Win the world by doing nothing. 
How do I know it is so? 

Through this: - 
   The more prohibitions there are, 
      The poorer the people become. 
   The more sharp weapons there are, 
      The greater the chaos in the state. 
    The more skills of technique, 
      The more 
cunning things are produced. 
   The greater the number of statutes, 
      The greater the number of thieves and brigands. 

Therefore the sage says: 
   I do nothing and the people are 
reformed of themselves. 
   I love quietude and the people are righteous of themselves. 
   I deal in no business and the people grow rich by themselves. 
   I have no desires and the people are simple 
      and honest by themselves. 
 

58.  Lazy Government 

When the government is lazy and dull, 
   Its people are unspoiled; 
When the government is efficient and smart, 
   Its people are discontented. 

Disaster is the avenue of fortune, 
(And) fortune is the concealment for disaster. 
   Who would be able to know its ultimate results? 
(As it is), there would never be the normal. 
   But the normal would (immediately) revert to the deceitful. 
   And the good revert to the sinister. 
Thus long has mankind gone astray! 

Therefore the Sage is square (has firm principles), 
   but not cutting (sharp-cornered), 
Has integrity but 
does not hurt (others), 
Is straight, but not high-handed, 
Bright, but not dazzling. 
 

59.  Be Sparing 

In managing human affairs, there is no better rule 
   than to be 
sparing
To be sparing is to forestall; 
To forestall is to be prepared and strengthened; 
To be prepared and strengthened is to be ever-victorious; 
To be ever-victorious is to have infinite capacity; 
He who has infinite capacity is fit to rule a country, 
And the Mother (principle) of a ruling country can long endure. 
   This is to be firmly rooted, to have deep strength, 
   The road to immortality and enduring vision. 
 

60.  Ruling a Big Country 

Rule a big country as you would fry small fish
Who rules the world in accord with Tao 
   Shall find that the spirits lose their power. 
It is not that the spirits lose their power, 
   But that they cease to do people harm. 
It is not (only) that they cease to do people harm, 
   The Sage (himself) also does no harm to the people. 
When both do not do each other harm, 
   The original character is restored. 
 

61.  Big and Small Countries 

A big country (should be like) the delta low-regions, 
   Being the concourse of the world, 
   (And) the Female of the world. 
The Female overcomes the Male by quietude, 
And achieves the lowly position by quietude. 

Therefore if a big country places itself below a small country 
   It 
absorbs the small country. 
(And) if a small country places itself below a big country, 
   It absorbs the big country. 
Therefore some place themselves low to absorb (others), 
   Some are (naturally) low and absorb (others). 
      What a big country wants is but to shelter others, 
      And what a small country wants is but to be able to 
         come in and be sheltered. 
Thus (considering) that both may have what they want, 
   A big country ought to place itself low. 
 

62.  The Good Man's Treasure 

Tao is the mysterious secret of the universe, 
The good man's treasure, 
And the bad man's refuge. 
   Beautiful saying can be sold at the market, 
   Noble conduct can be presented as a gift. 
Though there be bad people, 
Why reject them? 

Therefore on the crowning of an emperor, 
   On the appointment of the Three Ministers, 
   Rather than send tributes of jade and teams of four horses, 
   Send in the tribute of Tao. 
Wherein did the ancients prize this Tao? 
Did they not say, "to search for the guilty ones and pardon them"? 
   Therefore is (tao) the treasure of the world. 
 

63.  Difficult and Easy 

   Accomplish do-nothing. 
   Attend to no-affairs. 
   Taste the flavorless. 
Whether it is big or small, many or few, 
Requite hatred with virtue. 
   Deal with the difficult while yet it is easy; 
   Deal wit the big while yet it is small. 
The difficult (problems) of the world 
   Must be dealt with while they are yet easy; 
The great (problems) of the world 
   Must be dealt with while they are yet small. 
Therefore the Sage by never dealing with great (problems) 
   Accomplishes greatness. 

He who lightly makes a promise 
   Will find it often hard to keep his faith. 
He who makes light of many things 
   Will encounter many difficulties. 
Hence even the Sage regards things as difficult, 
   And for that reason never meets with difficulties. 
 

64.  Beginning and End 

That which lies still is easy to hold; 
   That which is not yet manifest is easy to forestall; 
That which is brittle (like ice) easily melts; 
   That which is minute easily scatters. 
Deal with a thing before it is there; 
Check disorder before it is rife. 
   A tree with a full span's girth begins from a tiny sprout; 
   A nine-storied terrace begins with a clod of earth. 
   A journey of a thousand li beings at one's feet. 

He who acts, spoils; 
He who grasps, lets slip. 
Because the Sage does not act, he does not spoil, 
Because he does not grasp, he does not let slip. 
   The affairs of men are often spoiled within an ace of completion. 
   By being careful at the end as at the beginning 
   Failure is averted. 

Therefore the Sage desires to have no desire, 
   And values not objects difficult to obtain. 
Learns that which is unlearned, 
   And restores what the multitude have lost. 
That he may assist in the course of Nature 
   And not presume to interfere. 
 

65.  The Grand Harmony 

The ancients who knew how to follow the Tao 
   Aimed not to enlighten the people., 
   But to keep them ignorant. 
The reason it is difficult for the people to leave in peace 
   Is because of too much knowledge. 
Those who seek to rule a country by knowledge 
   Are the nation's curse. 
Those who seek not to rule a country by knowledge 
   Are the nation's blessing. 
Those who know these two (principles) 
   Also know the ancient standard, 
And to know always the ancient standard 
   Is called the Mystic Virtue. 
When the Mystic Virtue becomes clear, far-reaching, 
   And things revert back (to their source) 
   Then and then only emerges the Grand Harmony. 
 

66.  The Lords of the Ravines 

How did the great rivers and seas become the Lords 
   of the ravines? 
By being good at keeping low. 
That was how they became Lords of the Ravines. 
Therefore in order to be the chief among the people, 
   One must speak like their inferiors. 
In order to be foremost among the people, 
   One must walk behind them. 
Thus it is that the Sage stays above, 
   And the people do not feel his weight; 
Walks in front, 
   And the people do not wish him harm. 
Then the people of the world are glad to uphold him forever. 
Because he does not contend, 
No one in the world can contend against him. 
 

67.  The Three Treasures 

All the world says: my teaching (Tao) greatly resembles folly. 
   Because it is great; therefore it resembles folly. 
If it did not resemble folly, 
   It would have long ago become petty indeed! 

I have Three Treasures; 
Guard them and keep them safe: 
   the first is 
Love
   The second is, 
Never too much
   The third is, Never be the first in the world. 
Through Love, one has no fear; 
Through not doing too much, one has amplitude 
   (of reserve power); 
Through not presuming to be the first in the world, 
   One can develop one's talent and let it mature. 

If one forsakes love and fearlessness, 
   forsakes restraint and reserve power, 
   forsakes following behind and rushes in front, 
He is doomed! 

For love is victorious in attack, 
   And invulnerable in defense. 
Heaven arms with love 
   Those it would not see destroyed. 
 

68.  The Virtue of Not-Contending 

The brave soldier is not violent; 
The good fighter does not lose his temper; 
The great conqueror does not fight (on small issues); 
The good user of men places himself below others. 
- This is the virtue of not-contending, 
   Is called the capacity to use men, 
   Is reaching to the height of being 
      Mated to Heaven, to what was of old. 
 

69.  Camouflage 

There is the maxim of military strategists; 
   I dare not be the first to invade, but rather 
be the invaded
   Dare not press forward an inch, but rather retreat a foot. 
That is, to march without formations, 
   To roll up the sleeves, 
   To charge not in frontal attacks, 
   To arm 
without weapons
There is no greater catastrophe than to underestimate the enemy. 
To underestimate the enemy might entail the loss of my treasures. 
    Therefore when two equally matched armies meet, 
It is the 
man of sorrow who wins. 
 

70.  They Know Me Not 

My teachings are very easy to understand 
   and very easy to practice, 
But no one can understand them and 
   no one can practice them. 
   In my words there is a principle. 
   In the affairs of men there is a system. 
Because they know not these, 
They also know me not. 
   Since there are few that know me, 
   Therefore I am distinguished. 
Therefore the Sage wears a coarse cloth on top 
   And carries jade within his bosom. 
 

71.  Sick-Mindedness 

Who knows that he does not know is the highest; 
Who (pretends to) know what he does not know is sick-minded. 
And who recognizes sick-mindedness as sick-mindedness 
   is not sick-minded. 
   The Sage is not sick-minded. 
   Because he recognizes sick-mindedness as sick-mindness, 
   Therefore he is not sick-minded. 
 

72.  On Punishment (1) 

When people have no fear of force
   Then (as is the common practice) great force descends upon them. 

Despise not their dwellings, 
Dislike not their progeny. 
   Because you do not dislike them, 
   You will not be disliked yourself. 
Therefore the Sage knows himself, but does not show himself, 
   Loves himself, but does not exalt himself. 
Therefore he rejects the one (force) and 
   accepts the other (gentility). 
 

73.  On Punishment (2) 

Who is brave in daring (you) kill, 
Who is brave in not daring (you) let live. 
In these two, 
   There is some advantage and some disadvantage. 
    (Even if) Heaven dislikes certain people, 
   Who would know (who are to be killed and) why? 
Therefore even the Sage regards it as a difficult question. 
   Heaven's Way (Tao) is good at conquest without strife, 
   Rewarding (vice and virtue) without words, 
   Making its appearance without call, 
   Achieving results without obvious design. 
The heaven's net is broad and wide
 With big meshes, yet letting nothing slip through. 
 

74.  On Punishment (3) 

The people are not afraid of death; 
Why threaten them with death? 
   Supposing that the people are afraid of death, 
   And we can seize and kill the unruly, 
   Who would dare to do so? 
Often it happens that the executioner is killed. 
And to take the place of the executioner 
   Is like handling the hatchet for the master carpenter. 
He who handles the hatchet for the master carpenter 
   seldom escapes injury to his hands. 
 

75.  Punishment (4) 

When people are hungry, 
It is because their rulers eat too much tax-grain. 
   Therefore the unruliness of hungry people 
   Is due to the interference of their rulers. 
   That is why they are unruly. 
The people are not afraid of death, 
Because they are anxious to make a living. 
That is why they are not afraid of death. 
   It is those who interfere not with their living 
   That are wise in exalting life.  
 

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 18:9  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

41. Qualities of the Taoist 

When the highest type of men hear the Tao (truth), 
   they try hard to live in accordance with it. 
When the mediocre type hear the Tao, 
   they seem to be aware and yet unaware of it. 
When the lowest type hear the Tao, 
   They break into loud laughter - 
   If it were not laughed at, it would not be Tao. 

Therefore there is the established saying: 
   "Who understands Tao seems dull of comprehension; 
   Who is advance in Tao seems to slip backwards; 
   Who moves on the even Tao (Path) seems to go up and down." 

Superior character appears like a hollow (valley); 
Sheer white appears like tarnished; 
Great character appears like infirm; 
Pure worth appears like contaminated. 
   Great space has no corners; 
   Great talent takes long to mature; 
   Great music is faintly heard; 
   Great form has no contour; 
   And Tao is hidden without a name. 
It is this Tao that is adept at lending (its power) 
   and bringing fulfillment. 
 

42.  The Violent Man 

Out of Tao, One is born; 
Out of One, Two; 
Out of Two, Three; 
Out of Three, the created universe. 
The created universe carries the yin at its back 
   and the yang in front; 
Through the union of the pervading principles it 
   reaches harmony. 

To be "orphaned," "lonely" and "unworthy" is what men hate most. 
   Yet the princes and dukes call themselves by such names. 
For sometimes things are benefited by being taken away from, 
And suffer by being added to. 

Others have taught this maxim, 
Which I shall teach also: 
"The violent man shall die a violent death." 
This I shall regard as my spiritual teacher. 
 

43.  The Softest Substance 

The softest substance of the world 
Goes through the hardest. 
That-which-is-without-form penetrates that-which-has-no-crevice; 
Through this I know the benefit of 
taking no action
The teaching without words 
And the benefit of taking no action 
   Are without compare in the universe. 
 

44.  Be Content 

Fame or one's own self, which does one love more? 
One's own self or material goods, which has more worth? 
Loss (of self) or possession (of goods), which is the greater evil? 

Therefore: he who loves most spends most, 
   He who hoards much loses much. 
The contented man meets no disgrace; 
Who know when to stop runs into no danger - 
He can long endure. 
 

45.  Calm Quietude 

The highest perfection is like imperfection
   And its use is never impaired. 
The greatest abundance seems meager, 
   And its use will never fail. 
What s most straight appears devious, 
The greatest skill appears clumsiness; 
The greatest eloquence seems like stuttering. 
Movement overcomes cold, 
(But) keeping still overcomes heat. 
Who is calm and quiet becomes the guide for the universe. 
 

46.  Racing Horses 

When the world lives in accord with Tao, 
Racing horses are turned back to haul refuse carts. 
When the world lives not in accord with Tao, 
Cavalry abounds in the countryside. 

There is no greater curse than the lack of contentment. 
No greater sin than the desire for possession. 
Therefore he who is contented with contentment 
   shall be always content. 
 

47.  Pursuit of Knowledge 

Without stepping outside one's doors, 
   One can know what is happening in the world, 
Without looking out of one's windows, 
   One can see the Tao of heaven. 

The farther one pursues knowledge, 
   The less one knows. 
Therefore the Sage knows without running about, 
   Understands without seeing, 
   Accomplishes without doing. 
 

48.  Conquering the World by Inaction 

The student of knowledge (aims at) learning day by day; 
The student of Tao (aims at) losing day by day. 
   By continual losing 
   One reaches doing nothing (laissez-faire). 
He who conquers the world often does so by 
doing nothing
When one is compelled to 
do something
The world is already beyond his conquering. 
 

49.  The People's Hearts 

The Sage has no decided opinions and feelings
But regards the people's opinions and feelings as his own. 

The good ones I declare good; 
The bad ones I also declare good. 
   That is the goodness of Virtue. 
The honest ones I believe; 
The liars I also believe; 
   That is the faith of Virtue. 

The Sage dwells in the world peacefully, harmoniously. 
The people of the world are brought into a community of heart, 
And the Sage regards them all as his own children. 
 

50.  The Preserving of Life 

Out of life, death enters. 
The companions (organs) of life are 
thirteen
The companions (organs) of death are (also) thirteen. 
What send man to death in this life are also (these) thirteen. 
   How is it so? 
Because of the intense activity of multiplying life. 

It has been said that the who is a good preserver of hi life 
   Meets no tigers or wild buffaloes on land, 
   Is not vulnerable to weapons in the field of battle. 
The horns of the wild buffalo are powerless against him. 
   How is it so? 
Because he is 
beyond death
 

51.  The Mystic Virtue 

   Tao gives them birth, 
   Teh (character) fosters them. 
   The material world gives them form. 
   The circumstances of the moment complete them. 
Therefore all things of the universe worship Tao and exalt Teh. 
   Tao is worshipped and Teh is exalted 
   Without anyone's order but is so of its own accord. 

Therefore Tao gives them birth, 
Teh fosters them, 
Makes them grow, develops them, 
Gives them a harbor, a place to dwell in peace, 
Feeds them and shelter them. 
   It gives them birth and does not own them, 
   Acts (helps) and does not appropriate them, 
   Is superior, and does not control them. 
   - This is the Mystic Virtue. 
 

52.  Stealing the Absolute 

There was a beginning of the universe 
   Which may be regarded as the Mother of the Universe. 
From the Mother, we may know her sons. 
   After knowing the sons, keep to the Mother. 
   Thus one's whole life may be preserved from harm. 

Stop its apertures, 
Close its doors, 
And one's whole life is without toil. 

Open its apertures, 
Be busy about its affairs, 
And one's whole life is beyond redemption. 

He who can see the small is clear-sighted; 
He who stays by gentility is strong. 
   use the light, 
   And return to clear-sightedness - 
Thus cause not yourself later distress. 
- This is to rest in the Absolute. 
 

53.  Brigandage 

If I were possessed of Austere Knowledge, 
Walking on the Main Path (Tao), 
I would avoid the by-paths. 
   the Main path is easy to walk on, 
   Yet people love the small by-paths. 

The (official) courts are spic and span, 
(While) the fields go untilled, 
And the (people's) granaries are very low. 
(Yet) clad in embroidered gowns, 
And carrying find swords, 
Surfeited with good food and drinks, 
(They are) splitting with wealth and possessions. 
   - This is to lead the world toward brigandage. 
   Is this not corruption of Tao? 
 

54.  The Individual and the State 

Who is firmly established is not easily shaken. 
Who has a firm grasp does not easily let go. 
From generation to generation his ancestral sacrifices 
   Shall be continued without fail. 

Cultivated in the individual, character will become genuine; 
Cultivated in the family, character will become abundant; 
Cultivated in the village, character will multiply; 
Cultivated in the state, character will prosper; 
Cultivated in the world, character will become universal. 

Therefore: 
   According to (the character of ) the individual, 
      judge the individual; 
   According to (the character of ) the family, 
      judge the family; 
   According to (the character of ) the village, 
      judge the village; 
   According to (the character of ) the state, 
      judge the state; 
   According to (the character of ) the world, 
      judge the world. 
   How do I know this is so? 
   By 
this
 

55.  The Character of the Child 

Who is rich in character 
Is like a child. 
   No poisonous insects sting him, 
   No wild beasts attack him, 
   And no birds of prey pounce upon him. 
His bones are soft, his sinews tender, yet his grip is strong. 
Not knowing the union of male and female, yet his organs are complete, 
   Which means his vigor is unspoiled. 
Crying the whole day, yet his voice never runs hoarse, 
   Which means his (natural) harmony is perfect. 
To know harmony is to be in accord with the eternal, 
(And) to know eternity is called discerning. 
(But) to improve upon life is called an ill-omen; 
To let go the emotions through 
impulse is called assertiveness. 
(For) things age after reaching their prime; 
That (assertiveness) would be against Tao. 
And he who is against Tao perishes young. 
 

56.  Beyond Honor and Disgrace 

He who knows does not speak; 
He who speaks does not know. 
   Fill up its apertures, 
   Close its doors, 
   Dull its edges, 
   Untie its tangles, 
   Soften its light, 
   Submerge its turmoil, 
   - This is the 
Mystic Unity

Then love and hatred cannot touch him. 
Profit and loss cannot reach him. 
Honor and disgrace cannot affect him. 
Therefore is he always the honored one of the world.  
 

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 18:8  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

26. Heaviness and Lightness 

The Solid is the root of the light; 
The Quiescent is the master of the Hasty. 

Therefore the Sage travels all day 
   Yet never leaves his provision-cart. 
In the midst of honor and glory, 
   He lives leisurely, undisturbed. 

How can the ruler of a great country 
Make light of his body in the empire (by rushing about)? 
In light frivolity, the Center is lost; 
In hasty action, self-mastery is lost. 
 

27.  On Stealing the Light 

A good runner leaves no track. 
A good speech leaves no flaws for attack. 
A good reckoner makes use of no counters. 
A well-shut door makes use of no bolts, 
   And yet cannot be opened. 
A well-tied knot makes use of no rope, 
   And yet cannot be untied. 

Therefore the Sage is good at helping men; 
   For that reason there is no rejected (useless) person. 
He is good at saving things; 
   For that reason there is 
nothing rejected
    - This is called 
stealing the Light. 

Therefore the good man is the Teacher of the bad. 
And the bad man is the 
lesson of the good. 

He who neither values his teacher 
Nor loves the lesson 
Is one gone far astray, 
   Though he be learned. 
   - Such is the subtle secret. 
 

28.  Keeping to the Female 

He who is aware of the Male 
But keeps to the Female 
   Becomes the 
ravine of the world. 
Being the ravine of the world, 
   He has the original character (teh) which is not cut up. 
   And returns again to the (innocence of the) babe. 

He who is conscious of the white (bright) 
But keeps to the black (dark) 
   Becomes the model for the world. 
Being the model for the world, 
   He has the eternal power which never errs, 
   And returns again to the Primordial Nothingness. 

He who is familiar with honor and glory 
But keeps to obscurity 
   Becomes the valley of the world. 
Being the valley of the world, 
   He has an eternal power which always suffices, 
   And returns again to the natural integrity of uncarved wood. 

Break up this uncarved wood 
   And it is shaped into vessel 
In the hands of the Sage 
   They become the officials and magistrates. 
   Therefore the great ruler does not cut up. 
 

29.  Warning Against Interference 

There are those who will conquer the world 
And make of it (what they conceive or desire). 
   I see that they will not succeed. 
(For) the world is God's own Vessel 
It cannot be made (by human interference). 
   He who makes it spoils it. 
   He who holds it loses it. 
For:  Some things go forward, 
   Some things follow behind; 
   some blow hot, 
   And some 
blow cold; 
    Some are strong, 
   And some are weak; 
   Some may break, 
   And some may fall. 
Hence the Sage eschews excess, eschews extravagance, 
   Eschews pride. 
 

30.  Warning Against the Use of Force 

He who by Tao purposes to help the ruler of men 
Will oppose all conquest by 
force of arms
 For such things are wont to rebound. 
Where armies are, thorns and brambles grow. 
The raising of a great host 
Is followed by a year of dearth. 

Therefore a good general effects his purpose and stops. 
   He dares not rely upon the strength of arms; 
Effects his purpose and does not glory in it; 
Effects his purpose and does not boast of it; 
Effects his purpose and does not take pride in it; 
   Effects his purpose as a regrettable necessity; 
   Effects his purpose but does not love violence. 
(For) things age after reaching their prime. 
That (violence) would be against the Tao. 
And he who is against the Tao perishes young. 
 

31.  Weapons of Evil 
 
Of all things, 
soldiers are instruments of evil, 
   Hated by men. 
Therefore the religious man (possessed of Tao) avoids them. 
The gentleman favors the left in civilian life, 
But on military occasions favors the 
right

Soldiers are weapons of evil. 
   They are not the weapons of the gentleman. 
When the use of soldiers cannot be helped, 
   The best policy is calm restraint. 

Even in victory, there is no beauty
And who calls it beautiful 
   Is one who delights in slaughter. 
He who delights in slaughter 
   Will not succeed in his ambition to rule the world. 

[The things of good omen favor the left. 
The things of ill omen favor the right. 
The lieutenant-general stands on the left, 
The general stands on the right. 
That is to say, it is celebrated as a Funeral Rite.] 

The slaying of multitudes should be mourned with sorrow. 
A victory should be celebrated with the 
Funeral Rite
 

32.  Tao is Like the Sea 

Tao is absolute and has no name. 
Though the uncarved wood is small, 
   It cannot be employed (used as vessel) by anyone. 
If kings and barons can keep (this unspoiled nature), 
   The whole world shall yield them lordship of their own accord. 

The Heaven and Earth join, 
   And the sweet rain falls, 
Beyond the command of men, 
   Yet evenly upon all. 

Then human civilization arose and there were names
Since there were names, 
   It were well one knew where to stop. 
He who knows where to stop 
   May be exempt from danger. 
Tao in the world 
   May be compared to rivers that 
run into the sea
 

33.  Knowing Oneself 

He who knows others is learned; 
   He who knows himself is wide. 
He who conquers others has power of muscles; 
   He who conquers himself is strong. 
He who is contented is rich. 
   He who id determined has strength of will. 
He who does not lose his center endures. 
He who dies yet (his power) remains has 
long life
 

34.  The Great Tao Flows Everywhere 

The Great Tao flows everywhere, 
   (Like a flood) it may go left or right. 
The myriad things derive their life from it, 
   And it does not deny them. 
When its work is accomplished, 
   It does not take possession. 
It clothes and feeds the myriad things, 
   Yet does not claim them as its own. 
Often (regarded) without mind or passion, 
   It may be considered small. 
Being the 
home of all things, yet claiming not, 
   It may be considered great. 
Because to the end it does not claim greatness, 
   Its greatness is achieved. 
 

35.  The Peace of Tao 

Hold the Great Symbol 
   and all the world follows, 
   Follows without meeting harm, 
   (And lives in) health, peace, commonwealth. 

Offer good things to eat 
And the wayfarer stays. 
   But Tao is mild to the taste. 
   Looked at, it cannot be seen; 
   Listened to, it cannot be heard; 
   Applied, its supply never fails. 
 

36.  The Rhythm of Life 

He who is to be made to dwindle (in power) 
   Must first be caused to expand. 
He who is to be weakened 
   Must first be made strong. 
He who is to be laid low 
   Must first be exalted to power. 
He who is to be taken away from 
   Must first be given, 
   - This is the Subtle Light. 

Gentleness overcomes strength: 
   Fish should be left in the deep pool, 
   And sharp weapons of the state should be left 
      Where none can see them. 
 

37.  World Peace 

The Tao never does, 
   Yet through it everything is done. 
If princes and dukes can keep the Tao, 
   the world will of its own accord be reformed. 
When reformed and rising to action, 
   Let it be restrained by the Nameless pristine simplicity. 
The Nameless pristine simplicity 
   Is stripped of desire (for contention). 
By stripping of desire quiescence is achieved, 
And the world arrives at peace of its own accord. 
 

38.  Degeneration 
 
The man of superior character is not (conscious of his) character. 
   Hence he has character. 
The man of inferior character (is intent on) not losing character. 
   Hence he is devoid of character. 
The man of superior character never acts, 
   Nor ever (does so) with an ulterior motive. 
The man of inferior character acts, 
   And (does so) with an ulterior motive. 
The man of superior kindness acts, 
   But (does so) without an ulterior motive. 
The man of superior justice acts, 
   And (does so) with an ulterior motive. 
(But when) the man of superior 
li acts and finds no response, 
   He rolls up his sleeves to force it on others. 
 
 Therefore: 
After Tao is lost, then (arises the doctrine of) humanity. 
After humanity is lost, then (arises the doctrine of) justice. 
After justice is lost, then (arises the doctrine of) li
Now li is the thinning out of loyalty and honesty of heart. 
   And the beginning of chaos. 
The prophets are the flowering of Tao 
   And the origin of folly. 
Therefore the noble man dwells in the heavy (base), 
   And not in the thinning (end). 
He dwells in the fruit, 
   And not in the flowering (expression). 
Therefore he rejects the one and accepts the other. 
 

39.  Unity Through Complements 

There were those in ancient times possessed of the One; 
Through possession of the One, the Heaven was clarified, 
Through possession of the One, The Earth was stabilized, 
Through possession of the One, the gods were spiritualized, 
Through possession of the One, the valleys were made full, 
Through possession of the One, all things lived and grew, 
Through possession of the One, the princes and dukes 
   became the ennobled of the people. 
   - that was how each became so. 

Without clarity, the Heavens would shake, 
Without stability, the Earth would quake, 
Without spiritual power, the gods would crumble, 
Without being filled, the valleys would crack, 
Without the life-giving power, all things would perish, 
Without the ennobling power, the princes and dukes would stumble. 
therefore the nobility depend upon the common man for support, 
And the exalted ones depend upon the lowly for their base. 

That is why the princes and dukes call themselves 
   "the orphaned," "the lonely one," "the unworthy." 
Is is not true then that they depend upon the common man for support? 
Truly, take down the parts of a chariot, 
   And there is 
no chariot (left)
Rather than jingle like the jade, 
   Rumble like the rocks. 
 

40.  The Principle of Reversion 

Reversion is the action of Tao. 
   Gentleness is the function of Tao. 
The things of this world come from Being, 
   And Being (comes) from Non-being. 

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 18:7  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

14. Prehistoric Origins 

Looked at, but cannot be seen - 
   That is called the Invisible (yi). 
Listened to, but cannot be heard - 
   That is called the Inaudible (hsi). 
Grasped at, but cannot be touched - 
   That is called the Intangible (
wei). 
These three elude our inquiries 
And hence blend and become One. 

Not by its rising, is there light, 
Nor by its sinking, is there darkness. 
   Unceasing, continuous, 
   It cannot be defined, 
And reverts again to the realm of nothingness. 

That is why it is called the Form of the Formless, 
The Image of Nothingness. 
That is why it is called the Elusive: 
   Meet it and you do not see its face; 
   Follow it and you do not see its back. 
 

15.  The Wise Ones of Old 

The wise ones of old had subtle wisdom and depth of understanding, 
So profound that they could not be understood. 
And because they could not be understood, 
Perforce must they be so described: 
   Cautious, like crossing a wintry stream, 
   Irresolute, like one fearing danger all around, 
   Grave, like one acting as guest, 
   Self-effacing, like ice beginning to melt, 
 
Genuine, like a piece of undressed wood
   Open-minded, like a valley, 
   And 
mixing freely, like murky water. 

Who can find repose in a muddy world? 
   By lying still, it becomes clear. 
Who can maintain his calm for long? 
   By activity, it comes back to life. 

He who embraces this Tao 
   Guards against being over-full. 
Because he guards against being 
over-full
   He is beyond wearing out and renewal. 
 

16.  Knowing the Eternal Law 

Attain the utmost in Passivity, 
Hold firm to the basis of Quietude. 

The myriad things take shape and rise to activity, 
   But I watch them fall back to their repose. 
Like vegetation that luxuriantly grows 
   But returns to the root (soil) from which it springs. 

To return to the root is Repose; 
   It is called going back to one's Destiny. 
Going back to one's Destiny is to find the 
Eternal Law
   To know the Eternal Law is Enlightenment. 
And not to know the Eternal Law 
   Is to court disaster. 

He who knows the Eternal Law is tolerant; 
Being tolerant, he is impartial; 
Being impartial, he is 
kingly
Being kingly, he is in accord with 
Nature
Being in accord with Nature, he is in accord with Tao; 
Being in accord with Tao, he is eternal, 
And his whole life is preserved from harm. 

17.  Rulers 

Of the best rulers 
   The people (only) 
know that they exist; 
The next best the love and praise; 
The next they fear; 
And the next they revile. 

   When they do not command the people's faith, 
   Some will lose faith in them, 
   And then they resort to oaths! 
But (of the best) when their task is accomplished, 
   their work done, 
The people all remark, "We have done it ourselves." 
 

18.  The Decline of Tao 

On the decline of the great Tao, 
   The doctrine of 
"humanity" and "justice" arose. 
When knowledge and cleverness appeared, 
   Great hypocrisy followed in its wake. 

When the six relationships no longer lived at peace, 
   There was (praise of) "kind parents" and "filial sons." 

When a country fell into chaos and misrule, 
   There was (praise of) "loyal ministers." 
 

19.  Realize the Simple Self 

Banish wisdom, discard knowledge, 
   And the people shall profit a hundredfold; 
Banish "humanity," discard "justice," 
   And the people shall recover love of their kin; 
Banish cunning, discard "utility," 
   And the thieves and brigands shall disappear. 
As these three touch the externals and are inadequate, 
   The people have need of what they can depend upon: 

   Reveal thy simple self, 
   Embrace thy original nature, 
   Check thy selfishness, 
   Curtail thy 
desires
 

20.  The World and I 

Banish learning, and vexations end. 
   Between "Ah!" and "Ough!" 
   How much difference is there? 
Between "good" and "evil" 
   How much difference is there?" 
That which men fear 
   Is indeed to be feared; 
But, alas, distant yet is the dawn (of awakening)! 

The people of the world are merry-making, 
   As if partaking of the sacrificial feasts, 
   As if mounting the terrace in spring; 
I alone am mild, like one unemployed, 
   Like a new-born babe that cannot yet smile, 
   Unattached, like one without a home. 

The people of the world have enough and to spare, 
But I am like one left out, 
   My heart must be that of a fool, 
   Being muddled, nebulous! 

The vulgar are knowing, luminous; 
   I alone am dull, confused. 
The vulgar are clever, self-assured; 
   I alone, depressed. 
Patient as the sea, 
   Adrift, seemingly aimless. 

The people of the world all have a purpose; 
   I alone appear stubborn and uncouth. 
I alone differ from the other people, 
   And value drawing sustenance from the 
Mother
 

21.  Manifestations of Tao 

The marks of great Character 
Follow alone from the Tao. 

The thing that is called Tao 
   Is elusive, evasive. 
Evasive, elusive, 
   Yet latent in it are forms. 
Elusive, evasive, 
   Yet latent in it are objects. 
Dark and dim, 
   Yet latent in it is the life-force. 
The life-force being very true, 
   Latent in it are evidences. 

From the days of old till now 
Its Named (manifested forms) have never ceased, 
By which we may view the Father of All Things. 
How do I know the shape of the Father of All Things? 
   Through these (manifested forms)! 
 

22.  Futility of Contention 

To yield is to be preserved whole. 
To be bent is to become straight. 
To be hollow is to be filled. 
To be tattered is to be renewed. 
To be in want is to possess. 
To have plenty is to be confused. 

Therefore the Sage embraces the One
And becomes the model of the world. 
He does not reveal himself, 
   And is therefore 
luminous
He does not justify himself, 
   And is therefore far-famed. 
He does not boast of himself, 
   And therefore people give him credit. 
He does not pride himself, 
   And is therefore the chief among men. 

Is it not indeed true, as the ancients say, 
   "To yield is to be preserved whole?" 
Thus he is preserved and the world does him homage. 
 

23.  Identification with Tao 

Nature says few words: 
Hence it is that a squall lasts not a whole morning. 
A rainstorm continues not a whole day. 
Where do they come from? 
From Nature. 
Even Nature does not last long (in its utterances), 
   How much less should human beings? 

Therefore it is that: 
   He who follows the Tao is identified with the Tao. 
   He who follows Character (Teh) is identified with Character. 
   He who abandons (Tao) is identified with abandonment (of Tao). 
He who is identified with Tao - 
   Tao is also glad to welcome him. 
He who is identified with character - 
   Character is also glad to welcome him. 
He who is identified with abandonment - 
   Abandonment is also glad t welcome him. 
He who has not enough faith 
   Will not be able to command faith from others. 
 

24.  The Dregs and Tumors of Virtue 

He who stands on tiptoe does not stand (firm); 
He who strains his strides does not walk (well); 
He who reveals himself is not luminous; 
He who justifies himself is not far-famed; 
He who boasts of himself is not given credit; 
He who prides himself is not chief among men. 
   These in the eyes of Tao 
   Are called "the dregs and tumors of Virtue," 
      Which are things of disgust. 
Therefore the man of Tao spurns them. 
 

25.  The Four Eternal Models 

Before the Heaven and Earth existed 
There was something nebulous: 
   Silent, isolated, 
   Standing alone, changing not, 
   Eternally revolving without fail, 
   Worthy to be the Mother of All Things. 
I do not know its name 
   And address it as Tao. 
If forced to give it a name, I shall call it "Great." 
Being great implies reaching out in space, 
Reaching out in space implies far-reaching, 
Far-reaching implies reversion to the original point. 

Therefore: 
   Tao is Great, 
   The Heaven is great, 
   The Earth is great, 
   The 
King is also great. 
There are the Great Four in the universe, 
And the King is one of them. 

Man models himself after the Earth; 
The Earth models itself after Heaven; 
The Heaven models itself after Tao; 
Tao 
models itself after nature. 

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 18:5  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

7. Living for Others 

The universe is everlasting. 
The reason the universe is everlasting 
   Is that it does not life for 
Self
Therefore it can long endure. 

Therefore the Sage puts himself last, 
   And finds himself in the foremost place; 
Regards his body as accidental, 
   And his body is thereby preserved. 
Is it not because he does not live for Self 
That his Self is realized? 
 

8.  Water 

The best of men is like water; 
   Water benefits all things 
   And does not compete with them. 
It dwells in (the lowly) places that all disdain - 
   Wherein it comes near to the Tao. 

In his dwelling, (the Sage) loves the (lowly) earth; 
In his heart, he loves what is profound; 
In his relations with others, he loves kindness; 
In his words, he loves sincerity; 
In government, he loves peace; 
In business affairs, he loves ability; 
In hi actions, he loves choosing the right time. 
   It is because he does not contend 
   That he is without reproach. 
 

9.  The Danger of Overweening Success 

Stretch (a bow) to the very full, 
   And you will wish you had stopped in time. 
Temper a (sword-edge) to its very sharpest, 
   And the edge will not last long. 
When gold and jade fill your hall, 
   You will not be able to keep them safe. 
To be proud with wealth and honor 
   Is to sow seeds of one's own downfall. 
Retire when your work is done, 
   Such is Heaven's way. 
 
 

10.  Embracing the One 

In embracing the One with your soul, 
   Can you never forsake the Tao? 
In controlling your vital force to achieve gentleness, 
   Can you become like the 
new-born child
In cleansing and purifying your Mystic vision, 
   Can you strive after perfection? 
In loving the people and governing the kingdom, 
   Can you rule without interference? 
In opening and shutting the Gate of Heaven, 
   Can you play the part of the 
Female
In comprehending all knowledge, 
   Can you renounce the mind? 
 

11.  The Utility of Not-Being 

Thirty spokes unite around the nave; 
   From their not-being (loss of their individuality) 
      Arises the utility of the wheel. 
Mold clay into a vessel; 
   From its not-being (in the vessel's hollow) 
      Arises the utility of the vessel. 
Cut out doors and windows in the house (-wall), 
   From their not-being (empty space) arises the utility of the house. 
Therefore by the existence of things we profit. 
And by the non-existence of things we are served. 
 

12.  The Senses 

The five colors blind the eyes of man; 
The five musical notes deafen the ears of man; 
The five flavors dull the taste of man; 
Horse-racing, hunting and chasing madden the minds of man; 
Rare, valuable goods keep their owners 
awake at night

Therefore the Sage: 
   Provides for the 
belly and not the eye
   Hence, he rejects the one and accepts the other. 
 

13.  Praise and Blame 

"Favor and disgrace cause one dismay; 
What we value and what we fear are within our Self." 

What does this mean: 
"Favor and disgrace cause one dismay?" 
Those who receive a favor from above 
   Are dismayed when they receive it, 
   And dismayed when they lose it. 

What does this mean: 
"What we value and what we 
fear are within our Self?" 
We have fears because we have a 
self
When we do not regard that self as self, 
What have we to fear? 

Therefore he who values the world as his self 
   May then be entrusted with the government of the world; 
And he who loves the world as his self - 
   The world may then be entrusted to his care. 

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 18:4  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

1. On the Absolute Tao  

The Tao the can be told of 
Is not the Absolute Tao; 
The Names that can be given 
Are not Absolute Names. 

The Nameless is the origin of Heaven and Earth; 
The Named is the Mother of All Things. 

Therefore: 
Oftentimes, one strips oneself of passion 
In order to see the Secret of Life; 
Oftentimes, one regards life with passion, 
In order to see its manifest forms. 

These two (the Secret and its manifestations) 
Are (in their nature) the same; 
They are given different names 
When they become manifest. 

They may both be called the Cosmic Mystery
Reaching from the Mystery into the Deeper Mystery 
Is the Gate to the 
Secret of All Life. 
 
 

2.  The Rise of Relative Opposites  

When the people of the Earth all know beauty as beauty, 
   There arises (the recognition of) ugliness. 
When the people of the Earth all know the good as good, 
   There arises (the recognition of) evil. 

Therefore: 
   Being and non-being interdepend in growth; 
   Difficult and easy interdepend in completion; 
   Long and short interdepend in contrast; 
   High and low interdepend in position; 
   Tones and voice interdepend in harmony; 
   Front and behind interdepend in company. 

Therefore the Sage: 
   Manages affairs without action; 
   Preaches the doctrine without words; 
All things take their rise, but he does not turn away from them; 
He gives them life, but does not take possession of them; 
He acts, but does not appropriate; 
Accomplishes, but claims no credit. 
It is because he lays claim to no credit 
That the credit cannot be taken away from him. 
 

3.  Action Without Deeds  

Exalt not the wise
   So that the people shall not scheme and contend; 
Prize not rare objects, 
   So that the people shall not steal; 
Shut out from site the things of desire, 
   So that the people's hearts shall not be disturbed. 

Therefore in the government of the Sage: 
   He keeps empty their 
hearts 
   Makes full their bellies, 
   Discourages their ambitions, 
   Strengthens their frames; 
So that the people may be innocent of knowledge and desires. 
And the cunning ones shall not presume to 
interfere
   By action without deeds 
   May all live in peace. 
 

4.  The Character of Tao 

Tao is a hollow vessel, 
   And its use is inexhaustible! 
Fathomless! 
   Like the fountain head of all things, 
   Its sharp edges rounded off, 
   Its tangles untied, 
   Its light tempered, 
   Its turmoil submerged, 
Yet dark like deep water it seems to remain. 
   I do not know whose Son it it, 
   An image of what existed before God. 
 

5.  Nature  

Nature is unkind: 
   It treats the creation like sacrificial 
straw-dogs
The Sage is unkind: 
   He treats the people like sacrificial straw-dogs. 

How the universe is like a bellows! 
   Empty, yet it gives a supply that never fails; 
   The more it is worked, the more it brings forth. 

By many words is wit exhausted. 
Rather, therefore, hold to the 
core
 

6.  The Spirit of the Valley 

The Spirit of the Valley never dies. 
It is called the 
Mystic Female
   The Door of the Mystic Female 
   Is the root of Heaven and Earth. 

   Continuously, continuously, 
   It seems to remain. 
   Draw upon it 
   And it serves you with 
ease. 

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 18:2  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

 

A stone sculpture of Laozi, located north of Quanzhou at the foot of Mount Qingyuan.

Potential officials throughout Chinese history drew on the authority of non-Confucian sages, especially Laozi and Zhuangzi, to deny serving any ruler at any time. Zhuangzi, Laozi's most famous follower, had a great deal of influence on Chinese literati and culture. Zhuangzi is a central authority regarding eremitism, a particular variation of monasticism sacrificing social aspects for religious aspects of life. Zhuangzi considered eremitism the highest ideal, if properly understood.[34]

Scholars such as Aat Vervoom have postulated that Zhuangzi advocated a hermit immersed in society. This view of eremitism holds that seclusion is hiding anonymously in society. To a Zhuangzi hermit, being unknown and drifting freely is a state of mind. This reading is based on the "inner chapters" of the self-titled Zhuangzi.[35]

Scholars such as James Bellamy hold that this could be true and has been interpreted similarly at various points in Chinese history. However, the "outer chapters" of Zhuangzi have historically played a pivotal role in the advocacy of reclusion. While some scholars state that Laozi was the central figure of Han Dynasty eremitism, historical texts do not seem to support that position.[36]

An Islamic scholar Mirza Tahir Ahmad, the fourth Caliph of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in his book Revelation, Rationality, Knowledge & Truth sees Laozi as a recipient of divine revelations from God who founded a monotheistic religion which deteroriated over many centuries into what we see as Taoism today.[37]

Political theorists influenced by Laozi have advocated humility in leadership and a restrained approach to statecraft, either for ethical and pacifist reasons, or for tactical ends. In a different context, various anti-authoritarian movements have embraced the Laozi teachings on the power of the weak.[38] The economist Murray Rothbard suggested that Laozi was the first libertarian, likening Laozi's ideas on government to F.A. Hayek's theory of spontaneous order.[39][40] James A. Dorn agreed, writing that Laozi, like many 18th century liberals, "argued that minimizing the role of government and letting individuals develop spontaneously would best achieve social and economic harmony."[41] Similarly, the Cato Institute's David Boaz includes passages from the Daodejing in his 1997 book The Libertarian Reader.[42] Philosopher Roderick Long, however, argues that libertarian themes in Taoist thought are actually borrowed from earlier Confucian writers.[43]

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 13:24  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

 

Laozi meets Yinxi

Laozi's relationship with the guardian of the western pass, named Yinxi (Wade Giles Yin Hse), is the subject of numerous legends. It is Yinxi who asked Laozi to write down his wisdom in the traditional account of the Daodejing's creation. The story of Laozi transmitting the Daodejing to Yinxi is part of a broader theme involving Laozi the deity delivering salvific truth to a suffering humanity. Regardless, the deliverance of the Daodejing was the ultimate purpose of his human incarnation. Folklore developed around Laozi and Yinxi to demonstrate the ideal interaction of Taoist master and disciple.[31]

A seventh century work, Sandong zhunang ("Pearly Bag of the Three Caverns"), provides one account of their relationship. Laozi pretended to be a farmer when reaching the western gate, but was recognized by Yinxi, who asked to be taught by the great master. Laozi was not satisfied by simply being noticed by the guard and demanded an explanation. Yinxi expressed his deep desire to find the Tao and explained that his long study of astrology allowed him to recognize Laozi's approach. Yinxi was accepted by Laozi as a disciple. This is considered an exemplary interaction between Daoist master and disciple, reflecting the testing a seeker must undergo before being accepted. A would-be adherent is expected to prove his determination and talent, clearly expressing his wishes and showing that he had made progress on his own towards realizing the Tao.[32]

The Pearly Bag of the Three Caverns continues the parallel of an adherent's quest. Yinxi received his ordination when Laozi transmitted the Daodejing, along with other texts and precepts, just as Taoist adherents receive a number of methods, teachings and scriptures at ordination. This is only an initial ordination and Yinxi still needed an additional period to perfect his faith, thus Laozi gave him three years to perfect his Dao. Yinxi gave himself over to a full-time devotional life. After the appointed time, Yinxi again demonstrates determination and perfect trust, sending out a black sheep to market as the agreed sign. He eventually meets again with Laozi, who announces that Yinxi's immortal name is listed in the heavens and calls down a heavenly procession to clothe Yinxi in the garb of immortals. The story continues that Laozi bestowed a number of titles upon Yinxi and took him on a journey throughout the universe, even into the nine heavens. After this fantastic journey, the two sages set out to western lands of the barbarians. The training period, reuniting and travels represent the attainment of the highest religious rank in medieval Taoism called "Preceptor of the Three Caverns". In this legend, Laozi is the perfect Daoist master and Yinxi is the ideal Taoist student. Laozi is presented as the Tao personified, giving his teaching to humanity for their salvation. Yinxi follows the formal sequence of preparation, testing, training and attainment.[33]

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 13:21  توسط Masoud Molouki | 

Laozi's magnum opus, the Daodejing, is one of the most significant treatises in Chinese cosmogony. As with most other ancient Chinese philosophers, Laozi often explains his ideas by way of paradox, analogy, appropriation of ancient sayings, repetition, symmetry, rhyme, and rhythm.

The Daodejing, often called simply the Laozi after its reputed author, describes the Dao (or Tao) as the mystical source and ideal of all existence: it is unseen, but not transcendent, immensely powerful yet supremely humble, being the root of all things. According to the Daodejing, humans have no special place within the Dao, being just one of its many ("ten thousand") manifestations. People have desires and free will (and thus are able to alter their own nature). Many act "unnaturally", upsetting the natural balance of the Dao. The Daodejing intends to lead students to a "return" to their natural state, in harmony with Dao.[23] Language and conventional wisdom are critically assessed. Taoism views them as inherently biased and artificial, widely using paradoxes to sharpen the point.[24]

Livia Kohn provides an example of how Laozi encouraged a change in approach, or return to "nature", rather than action. Technology may bring about a false sense of progress. The answer provided by Laozi is not the rejection of technology, but instead seeking the calm state of wu wei, free from desires. This relates to many statements by Laozi encouraging rulers to keep their people in "ignorance", or "simple-minded". Some scholars insist this explanation ignores the religious context, and others question it as an apologetic of the philosophical coherence of the text. It would not be unusual political advice if Laozi literally intended to tell rulers to keep their people ignorant. However, some terms in the text, such as "valley spirit" (gushen) and "soul" (po), bear a religious context and cannot be easily reconciled with a purely ethical reading of the work.[24]

Wu wei, literally "non-action" or "not acting", is a central concept of the Daodejing. The concept of wu wei is very complex and reflected in the words' multiple meanings, even in English translation; it can mean "not doing anything", "not forcing", "not acting" in the theatrical sense, "creating nothingness", "acting spontaneously", and "flowing with the moment."[25]

It is a concept used to explain ziran, or harmony with the Dao. It includes the concepts that value distinctions are ideological and seeing ambition of all sorts as originating from the same source. Laozi used the term broadly with simplicity and humility as key virtues, often in contrast to selfish action. On a political level, it means avoiding such circumstances as war, harsh laws and heavy taxes. Some Taoists see a connection between wu wei and esoteric practices, such as the "sitting in oblivion" (emptying the mind of bodily awareness and thought) found in the Zhuangzi.[24]

According to esoteric adherents, the book contains specific instructions for Daoist adepts relating to qigong meditations, and in veiled preachings the way to revert to the primordial state.[26] This interpretation supports the view that Taoism is a religion addressing the quest of immortality.[27][28]

Taoism

Laozi is traditionally regarded as the founder of Daoism, intimately connected with the Daodejing and "primordial" (or "original") Daoism. Popular ("religious") Daoism typically presents the Jade Emperor as the official head deity. Intellectual ("elite") Daoists, such as the Celestial Masters sect, usually present Laozi (Laojun, "Lord Lao") and the Three Pure Ones at the top of the pantheon of deities.[29][30]

The story of Laozi has taken on strong religious overtones since the Han dynasty. As Daoism took root, Laozi was recognized as a god. Belief in the revelation of the Dao from the divine Laozi resulted in the formation of the Way of the Celestial Master, the first organized religious Daoist sect. In later mature Daoist tradition, Laozi came to be seen as a personification of Dao. He is said to have undergone numerous "transformations", or taken on various guises in various incarnations throughout history to initiate the faithful in the Way. Religious Daoism often holds that the "Old Master" did not disappear after writing the Daodejing, but rather traveled to India to reveal the Dao.

+ نوشته شده در  جمعه 29 مرداد1389ساعت 13:18  توسط Masoud Molouki |