October 26th, 2009

Chapter forty-three: Water and stone

What's softest in the world
rushes and runs
over what's hardest in the world.

The immaterial
enters
the impenetrable.

So I know the good in not doing

The wordless teaching,
the profit in not doing--
not many people understand it.

Lao Tsu, interpreted by Ursula Le Guin.
goban
  • trevoke

43

The softest thing in the universe
Overcomes the hardest thing in the universe.
That without substance can enter where there is no room.
Hence I know the value of non-action.

Teaching without words and work without doing
Are understood by very few.
-
-
The softest force in the universe
can overcome the hardest of objects.
Something without substance
can pass through the space between atoms.

That's how I know
about the power of doing nothing.

The silent teachings
and the power of doing nothing
can only be understood
by a few people.
-

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