Translation: Tao Te King – Chapter 18. Mending

Chapter 18. Mending

Animated .gif showing the right stroke order for writing Tao.
道 Tao. PD by artist Micheletb

When the great Tao has disappeared, charity among people and duty towards one’s kin follows.¹

When wisdom is joined with honor the world is full of those who ask.

When family ties are severed the children’s duties and parents’ spoiling replace them.

When there is lot of arguing among the people “patriots” flourish.


  1. Mr. Ervast: “When people do not have knowledge of the Way they grapple all sorts of external ethics. This chapter is perhaps written against the superficial-materialistic teachings of Confucius.”

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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