Chapters 25 – 30

<< Dao De Jing / 道德經 >>

Chapter 25


Before the Universe was born
There was already something, formless and perfect
Empty and serene
Unconditioned, unchanging, infinite and inexhaustible
It is the creating force of everything that is
For lack of a better name, I just call it Tao
If forced to describe it, I shall name it Omnipresent
It flows through all things, infinitely extending
And always returning to the origin of all things

Tao is great
Universe is great
Earth is great
Man is great
These are the four great powers

Man follows the Earth
The Earth follows the Universe
The Universe follows the Tao
The Tao follows only itself

Chapter 26


The heavy is the root of the light
The still is the master of unrest

Therefore, the Master travels all day
Without ever leaving home
However splendid the views
She remains unattached

Why should she, the owner of the world
flit about like a homeless?
To be fidgety is to wander astray from the source
To be restless is to lose control of your own mind

Chapter 27


A master walker leaves no tracks
and is not intent upon arriving
A good speech leaves no flaws
A great scientist frees himself of concepts
and keeps his mind open to what is

A well-shut door needs no bolts
   Yet it cannot be opened
A well-tied knot needs no rope
   Yet it cannot be untied

Therefore, the Master is willing to save all people
Never abandoning anyone
He makes good use of all things
Never wasting anything
This is called following the light

Therefore, the good man is the bad man’s teacher
And the bad man is the good man’s job

If the teacher is not valued
Or the student is not treasured
You will get lost in confusion
   However intelligent or clever you are
   – Such is the secret

Chapter 28


Know the strength of man
But keep a woman’s care
And you will receive the world in your arms
Embracing the world
Sticking to the Tao
And you will return to the unspoiled state of a newborn

Know the white
But keep the black
And you will be a model for the world
Being a model for the world
Sticking to the Tao
And you will reunite with the primordial light

Know the glory
Yet keep the humility
And be the valley of the universe
Being the valley
Sticking to the Tao
And you will return to your primal self

The world is created from the formless
Like utensils from a block of wood
The Master knows the utensils
Yet keeps to the uncarved block
A great tailor cuts little

Chapter 29


There are ambitious people who want to conquer the world
But I don’t think they will succeed

The world is God’s Vessel
It can’t be interfered with human force
If you tamper with it, you’ll ruin it.
If you possess it like an object, you’ll lose it

There is a time for going forward
a time for staying behind
a time for action
a time for rest
a time for being vigorous
a time for being resigned
a time for playing safe
a time for taking risk

The Master gives up on anything extreme, extravagant or excessive
She lets everything go their own way
and simply resides at the center

Chapter 30


The Master of the Tao never tries to force issues
For every force there is a counterforce
Violence, even well intentioned
Always rebounds upon oneself

The Master does his job
And then he stops
He understands that the universe
Forever is out of control
And that attempting to interfere with events
Goes against the currents of the Tao

The Master believes in herself
Therefore she doesn’t have to convince others
She is content with herself
Therefore she doesn’t need others’ approval
She accepts herself
So the whole world accepts her