The Tao (Mears)

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He who would help a Ruler of men by Tao Does not take soldiers to give strength to the kingdom. His service is well rewarded. Where troops dwell, there grow thorns and briers. After great wars, there follow bad years. He who loves, bears fruit unceasingly, He does not dare to conquer by strength. He bears fruit, but not with assertiveness, He bears fruit, but not with boastfulness, He bears fruit, but not with meanness, He bears fruit, but not to obtain it for himself, He bears fruit, but not to shew his strength. Man is great and strong, then he is old, In this he is not of Tao. If he is not of Tao He will quickly perish.


The Master who is a Captain of soldiers Does not give blessings with his weapons. Soldiers' weapons are hated by most men, Therefore he who has the Tao gives them no place. In the dwelling of the man of peace the left side is the place of honour. In soldiers' usage the right side is the place of honour. A soldier does not give blessings with his weapons. They are not the instruments of a man of peace. A man of peace will not possess them, nor use them; He gives the first place to calmness and repose. If he conquers, he does not rejoice. Without joy is he who wounds and kills men. The Master who wounds and kills men Cannot succeed in ruling his kingdom. In time of joy, the left hand is preferred, In time of mourning, the right hand is preferred. In war, the second in command is placed on the left, The first in command is placed on the right, That is, he stands in the place of mourning. He who has killed many men should weep with many tears. He who has conquered in battle should stand in the place of mourning.


The Name of Inner Life is Everlasting Tao. If only he is pure, though he may be small, The Servant of Tao dares to stand against the world. Tao is able to maintain the unity of prince and people; It subdues and binds all beings with each other; It united Heaven and Earth harmoniously to produce sweet dew; It gathers the people in the bonds of time and individuality. The Name produces, divides, and brings to life; Things produced ever return into the name. The Master also shall know how to rest in it. Knowing how to rest in it means that he never will decay. On the earth everywhere Tao exists, As the waters are collected in the valleys And return into the rivers and the seas.


He who knows men is wise, He who knows himself can see clearly. He who conquers men has strength, He who conquers himself has power He who knows that he has enough is rich, He who acts with energy has a strong will. He who fails not to find the Self shall endure, He who dies, but does not perish, shall endure for ever.


Great Tao flows everywhere, It extends to the left and to the right. All beings receive It in order to live and be free. It works out perfectness in them although It possesses not a Name. It protects them with love and sustains them, but does not claim to be Ruler of their actions. Always seeking the innermost, you may say that Its Name is in the Small. All beings return again into It, yet It does not claim to be Ruler of their actions. You may say that Its Name is in the Great. That is why, to the end of his life, the self-controlled man is not great in action, Thus he is able to perfect his greatness.


Hold fast the idea of "The Great," Then all men will be drawn to you. They will come to you and receive no hurt, But rest, peace and great calm. When you provide music and exquisite food The traveller will stay with you gladly. When the Tao flows out from you to him By his palate he does not detect its savour, By his eye he cannot perceive it, By his ears he cannot hear it, But in using it he finds it to be inexhaustible.

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