Translation: Tao Te King – Chapter 29. Idleness

Chapter 29. Idleness

When a man who wants to cure the world takes it to his hand I understand there is no end to his task.

Spiritual vessels cannot be formed in the world

He who makes, destroys.

A picture of the Louguantai Temple
The Louguantai Temple, about 70 km, west of Xi’an at 34° 3′ 34.82″ N, 108° 19′ 27.34″ E, is the place where tradition says that Laozi, founder of Taosim, composed the Tao Te King. Notice the statue of Laozi among the trees in the back. CC-BY 3.0 by artist Jean-Marie Hullot

He who grapples, loses.

For it is unavoidable that if one advances another is left behind. If one turns hot another goes cold. If one is strenghtened another is weakened. Id one is assisted another is spoiled.

This is why a wise man abandons all bigotry, light-mindedness and grandeur.


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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