June 7th, 2010

Chapter 24

To lift the heal is not to stand,
To take long strides is not to walk.
To show off is not to shine.
To insist that one is right is not to be distinct.
To claim credit is to have no credit.
To be proud of oneself is not to be the best.
From the point of view of Tao, all of these are extras which things themselves do not like.
Therefore, the man of Tao does not abide with these.

                                    Translated by Chang Chung-yuan, 1975.


He who stands on tiptoe is not steady.
He who strides cannot maintain the pace.
He who makes a show is not enlightened.
He who is self-righteous is not respected.
He who boasts achieves nothing.
He who brags will not endure.
According to followers of the Tao, "These are extra food and unnecessary luggage."
They do not bring happiness.
therefore followers of the Tao avoid them.
Keep your feet firmly planted
unless you want to fall on your face.
Learn how to pace yourself
if you want to get anywhere.
Don't call attention to yourself
if you want people to notice your work.

Nobody respects people
who always have excuses.
Nobody gives credit to people
who always take it.
People who hype themselves
have nothing else to offer.

Think of being in touch with Tao
like eating at a buffet:
Take only what you need.
Save some for everybody else.

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