Friday, April 13, 2012

Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu, Chapter 67

Dao De Jing, Laozi
Chapter 67

"In the world each says
My Tao is great and seems to lack resemblance
In the end only great therefore seems to lack resemblance.
It looks like resemblance goes with the long-lasting
With what is tiny as well.
In the end I possess three principles I am obtaining yet defending
One, say compassion
Two, say thrift
Three say lack of venturing to act to precede the world.
Compassion, so be able to be brave
Thrift, so be able to expand
Lack venturing to act to precede the world
So be able to perfect tools of growth.
Right now, abandon compassion just to be brave
Abandon thrift just to expand
Abandon being behind just to precede
Death goes with these.
In the end with compassion
A war happens and next comes conquering
Keeping to it happens and next comes solidity.
The heavens attain helping
It happens that compassion is defending."
-  Translated by David Lindauer, Chapter 67

"Everyone, says that my Tao is great,
seemingly different (from yours).
Because it is great, it seems different.
If it were not different,
it would have vanished long ago.
I have three treasures which I hold and keep.
The first is mercy;
the second is economy (thrifty);
the third is daring not to be ahead of others (which draws jealousy).
From mercy comes courage;
from economy comes generosity;
staying behind ensures maturity and fulfillment.
Nowadays men shun mercy and be brave;
abandon economy and be wasteful;
do not believe in humility, but always try to be the first.
This ensures death.
Mercy brings victory in battle and strength in defense.
If God wants to save him, makes him have mercy." 
-   Translated by Tienzen Gong, Chapter 67 
"All in the world call me great; but I resemble the unlikely.
Now a man is great only because he resembles the unlikely.
Did he resemble the likely, how lasting, indeed, would his mediocrity be!
1 have three treasures which I cherish and prize.
The first is called compassion.
The second is called economy.
The third is called not daring to come to the front in the world. 
The compassionate can be brave;
The economical can be generous;
Those who dare not come to the front in the world can become perfect as chief vessels.
Now, if people discard compassion and are brave;
If they discard economy and are generous;
If they discard modesty and are ambitious, they will surely die."
-   Translated by D. T. Suzuki and Paul Carus, 1913, Chapter 67

"The Tao may appear to be idealistic, but if you can put it into practice, you realize its greatness.
There are three traits which are required. 1. Compassion. 2. Patience. 3. Humility
Compassionate and you can face things the way they are.
Thus you can forgive yourself of any mistake.
Patient and you remain unmoved until the right opportunity arises.
Humble and you overcome self-importance, thus the ego.
In following the Tao, these are your three most valuable treasures."
-   Translated by David Bullen, Chapter 67 

"The world calls my Tao great but myself insignificant.
Yes: the clearer Tao manifests the more meaningless the ego becomes.
Worth nothing and without duration is he who wants to rate and be of importance.
Three treasures I guard which endure: the first is compassion the second frugality the third modesty.
Compassion makes me brave frugality generous modesty a carrier of the eternal.
Today the inconsiderate is called brave the spendthrift generous the go-getter progressive. 
They are progressing away from the essential thing toward decay toward death while the compassionate conquer through gentleness remaining in existence through non-resistance.
Heaven fills with compassion those it wants to preserve."
-   Translated by Schmidt, Chapter 67

"All the world says that, while my Tao is great, it yet appears to be inferior to other systems of teaching.
Now it is just its greatness that makes it seem to be inferior.
If it were like any other system, for long would its smallness have been known!
But I have three precious things which I prize and hold fast.
The first is gentleness; the second is economy; and the third is shrinking from taking precedence of others.
With that gentleness I can be bold;
With that economy I can be liberal;
Shrinking from taking precedence of others, I can become avessel of the highest honor.
Now-a-days they give up gentleness and are all for being bold;
Economy, and are all for being liberal;
The hindmost place, and seek only to be foremost;
Which in the end is death. 
Gentleness is sure to be victorious even in battle, and firmly to maintain its ground.
Heaven will save its possessor, by his very gentleness protecting him."
-   Translated by James Legge, 1891, Chapter 67  

"Everyone under Heaven regards my Tao as Great, resembling nothing else.
Great, yes; that is the reason it resembles nothing else.
If it resembled anything else, it would have slight chance of survival.
I have three Treasures to hold and protect.
The first is Compassion.
The second is Economy.
The third is not presuming to be the First under Heaven.
Compassion permits Courage.
Economy makes Generosity possible.
Not presuming to be the First under Heaven is a quality of Leadership.
Now, abandon Compassion and consider Courage.
Abandon Frugality and consider Generosity.
Abandon Humility and consider Leadership.
Impossible !
Now, Compassion in battle leads to Victory; Compassion in Defense lends strength.
Heaven will assist the commander who exhibits Compassion."
-   Translated by Karl Kromal, 2002, Chapter 67 

"Everyone says my Dao is so great that it does not look like anything.
I say because it is so great, it does not look like anything.
If it were like anything, it would have disappeared long ago.
I have three treasures to keep and protect:
The first is kindness, the second is thrift, and the third is not fighting to be first.
Only if you are kind, can you be brave;
Only if you are thrifty, can you be generous;
Only if you do not fight to be first, can you be a leader.
However, the people today are not kind but brave,
Are not thrifty but generous,
Are not humble but want to be leaders.
These people are destined for failure.
With kindness, when you fight, you will win; when you defend, you will be strong.
If the heavens wants to save someone, it will always give him kindness as his defense."
-   Translated by Xiaolin Yang, Chapter 67 



  1. Good morrow Mike,

    Fascinating how Tienzen Gong's language use shows an interesting nuance with "daring not to be...".

    Welcome back, hope your 're-creation' was energizing. J

  2. Being humble and quieter is stressed throughout the Tao Te Ching. I guess it does require some "daring" to be humble and quieter while living in the Age of the Articulate Experts as we do.
    Nice to be back. Thanks.