February 16th, 2013

goban
  • trevoke

37

Tao abides in non-action,
Yet nothing is left undone.
If kings and lords observed this,
The ten thousand things would develop naturally.
If they still desired to act,
They would return to the simplicity of formless substance.
Without form there is no desire.
Without desire there is tranquillity.
And in this way all things would be at peace.
-
-
Tao never does anything
but nothing is left undone.

If our leaders
could get in touch with Tao,
the world would take care of itself.
Even if they wanted
to impose their own ideas,
they'd be drawn back to Tao's
nameless simplicity.

When our lives are that simple,
we want for nothing.
We can relax,
and the world becomes a better place.
-

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

Chapter 37

37.1 The Way is always uncontrived,
       yet there's nothing it doesn't do.
37.2 If lords and monarchs could keep to it,
       all beings would evolve spontaneously.
       When they have evolved and want to act,
       I would stabilize them with nameless simplicity.
37.3 Even nameless simplicity would not be wanted.
       By not wanting, there is calm,
       and the world will straighten itself.

Tao Teh Ching - Thomas Cleary Translation