Counsel him not to use force to conquer the universe.
For this would only cause resistance.
Thorn bushes spring up wherever the army has passed.
Lean years follow in the wake of a great war.
Just do what needs to be done.
Never take advantage of power.
But never glory in them.
But never boast.
But never be proud.
Because this is the natural way.
But not through violence.
Force is followed by loss of strength.
This is not the way of Tao.
That which goes against the Tao comes to an early end.
If you want to be a leader
who's in touch with Tao,
never use violence
to achieve your goals.
Every act of violence backfires.
An army on the move
leaves a trail of tears,
and a military victory
always lies in ruins.
The Masters do what needs doing
and that's all they do.
Do what you have to do
without arrogance or pride.
Get the job done
and don't brag about it afterwards.
Do what you have to do,
not for your own benefit,
but because it needs to be done.
And don't do it the way
you think it should be done,
do it the way it needs to be done.
The mighty will always lose their power
and any connection
they ever had to Tao.
They will not last long;
if you're not right with Tao,
you might as well be dead.
The first version is from the Fortune files. The second version is the Beatrice Tao.