Translation: Tao Te King – Chapter 31. Ending war

Chapter 31. Ending war

Weapons, be they how fancy ever, are not sources of luck, but feared by all.

This why that man of the Tao does not dwell where these things are.

Stone statue depicting Laozi
We know why we make pictures of this guy. CC-SA-3.0 by yet another almost anonymous homie who goes by the name of Thanato. Get those chisels cracking. Now.

A respectable man sets the place of honor to left side of him in his home but a soldier going to battle, gives honor to his right side.

For weapons are ominous objects and an enlightened man does not use them unless he has no choice.

His great desire is for peace and he doesn’t rejoice in victory.

Rejoicing of victory is rejoicing of loss of human life.

Who rejoices in bloodshed is not fit to rule the country.

When peace and joy is in the country the left side is valued but when things go bad, honor is given to the right side.

General adjutant is therefore on the left side but general is on the right side.

I understand this is the same manner as is in funerals.


Own translation from 1925 Finnish translation by Pekka Ervast (ISBN 951-8995-01-X) with kind permission of Ruusu-Ristin Kirjallisuusseura ry.

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