Thursday, February 24, 2011

66: Go Low to Stand High


The river and the sea can be kings of a hundred valleys,
Because they lie below them.
That is why they can be the kings of a hundred valleys.
If the sage wants to stand above people,
He must speak to them from below.
If he wants to lead people,
He must follow them from behind.
When the sage stands above people,
They are not oppressed.
When he leads people,
They are not obstructed.
The world will exalt him
And not grow tired of him.
Because he does not resist,
None in the world resists him.

Go Low to Stand High

When Lao Tzu says that there are things that can rule over valleys, it comes as a surprise. He frequently compares Tao to the valley, and who can rule Tao? But the rivers float downwards and the sea is lower than the land, so they behave like Tao in their yielding. By their humble yielding they can become rulers...

Here is my full commentary on this Tao Te Ching chapter:
Tao Te Ching Chapter 66 Translation and Commentary

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