September 14th, 2009

goban
  • trevoke

1

The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao.
The name that can be named is not the eternal name.
The nameless is the beginning of heaven and Earth.
The named is the mother of the ten thousand things.
Ever desireless, one can see the mystery.
Ever desiring, one sees the manifestations.
These two spring from the same source but differ in name; this appears as darkness.
Darkness within darkness.
The gate to all mystery.
-
-
If you can talk about it,
it ain't Tao.
If it has a name,
it's just another thing.

Tao doesn't have a name.
Names are for ordinary things.

Stop wanting stuff;
it keeps you from seeing what's real.
When you want stuff,
all you see are things.

Those two sentences
mean the same thing.
Figure them out,
and you've got it made.
-

The first version is from the Fortune files. The second version is the Beatrice Tao.

Chapter One: Taoing

The way you can go
isn't the real way.
The name you can say
isn't the real name.

Heaven and earth
begin in the unnamed.
Name's the mother
of the ten thousand things.

So the unwanting soul
sees what's hidden,
and the everwanting soul
sees only what it wants.

Two things, one origin
but different in name,
whose identity is mystery.
Mystery of all mysteries!
The door to the hidden.

               Ursula Le Guin, 1998