Translation: Tao Te King – Chapter 56. Wondrous virtue

Chapter 56. Wondrous virtue

He who knows the Tao does not argue about it, and those who telltale of it do not know it.¹

To hold lips closed, to shut the doors of vision and hearing, to smoothen sharp corners, lessen the glare of bright light and to be on the same level as the dirt of the land – this is the wondrous virtue.

Picture of  a painting of a Chinese feller meditating. Hard.
Picture of a painting of a Chinese feller meditating. Hard. PD-ancient uploaded by Shizhao.

He who notices this, he looks with the same eyes at open mindedness and sullen mindedness, benevolence and insult, honor and shaming.

This is why all people greatly respect him.²


  1. Mr. Ervast: “First advice for those seeking God is that he should refrain from arguing about spiritual matters. To get to know God is only possible by endogenously seeking and silent practice.”
  2. Mr. Ervast: “This whole chapter is probably about practicer of mediation.”

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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