Thursday, August 23, 2012

Dao De Jing, Laozi, Chapter 52

Tao Te Ching, by Lao Tzu
Chapter 52

"The beginning of the universe, when materialized, is considered to be a mother.
When a man finds the mother, he will know the children, accordingly.
Even though he knows the children, he still clings to the mother:
Therefore, although his body wanes, he never perishes.
The person who shuts his mouth and closes his doors
Will never perish.
If he opens his mouth and increases his affairs,
He will never be saved.
The person who sees the tiniest thing possesses clear vision,
The person who adheres to the weak possesses strength.
Use your light, but dim your brightness,
In this way you will not do yourself any harm.
This is called following the eternal Tao."
-   Translated by Chou-Wing Chohan, Chapter 52 

"The world has an origin.
The origin is the mother.
Knowing the mother, we know the son.
Knowing the son, we deduce the mother.
This way, we can be successful.
Plugging leakages,
Closing openings,
We can never be depleted.
Opening leakages,
Making too many commitments,
We can be hopeless.
Those who pay attention to details are wise.
Those who exercise flexibility are strong.
Use the light,
Things are illuminated.
Thus we can avoid mistakes.
This is called normal behavior."
-   Translated by Thomas Zhang, Chapter 52  

"If you trace problems in your relationship
back to the beginning
you will find their seeds
were sown and then ignored.
They grew unnoticed until their fruit
ripened and surprised you.
But if you can find
where the seeds were sown,
there you will find the roots as well.
And if you remove the roots
your problems will wither."
-   Translated by William Martin, Chapter 52

"That which was the beginning of all things under heaven
We may speak of as the “mother” of all things.
He who apprehends the mother
Thereby knows the sons.
And he who has known the sons,
Will hold all the tighter to the mother,
And to the end of his days suffer no harm;
“Block the passages, shut the doors,
And till the end your strength shall not fail.
Open up the passages, increase your doings,
And till your last day no help shall come to you.”
As good sight means seeing what is very small
So strength means holding on to what is weak.
He who having used the outer-light can return to the innerlight
Is thereby preserved from all harm.
This is called resorting to the always-so."
-   Translated by Arthur Waley, Chapter 52 

"This world must have begun in certain way;
We may thenceforth consider it the origin (mother) of our world;
Once we manage to ascertain the origin, we could [apply it] to study its offsprings;
After we learn more about the offsprings, we may reciprocally eke out our knowledge about the mother (the origin);
This is my never-ending life-long quest.
If paths and openings of one's connections [to the outside world] are blocked, he will never be aroused to do anything in life;
If paths and openings of one's connections [to the outside world] are unlocked and he is properly motivated, he will never cease [from the quest described above].
One who perceives subtleties is brilliant;
One who maintains humility is strong.
One who would use [the light of Tao] to illuminate his [potential] brilliance will thus leave behind nothing that could cause misfortune to later generations.
A person, who achieves all of the above described fulfillment, is what I called the person with embodiment of the perpetual [Te]."
-   Translated by Lee Org, Chapter 52 

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