September 18th, 2009

  • trevoke


Heaven and Earth are impartial;
They see the ten thousand things as straw dogs.
The wise are impartial;
They see the people as straw dogs.
The space between heaven and Earth is like a bellows.
The shape changes but not the form;
The more it moves, the more it yields.
More words count less.
Hold fast to the center.
Tao's neutral:
it doesn't worry about good or evil.
The Masters are neutral:
they treat everyone the same.

Lao Tzu said Tao is like a bellows:
It's empty,
but it could help set the world on fire.
If you keep using Tao, it works better.
If you keep talking about it,
it won't make any sense.

Be cool.

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

Chapter Five: Useful Emptiness

Heaven and earth aren't humane.
To them the ten thousand things
are straw dogs.

Wise souls aren't humane.
To them the hundred families
are straw dogs.

Heaven and earth
act as a bellows.

Empty yet structured,
it moves, inexhaustibly giving.

Lao Tse, ca. 600 b.c./  Ursula Le Guin and J.P. Seaton, 1998 a.d.
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