Translation: Tao Te King – Chapter 66. Placing yourself last

Chapter 66. Placing yourself last

Image of a turqoise lake with mountaneus backdrop
PD by artist and uploader Wieschendahl.

The great streams and rivers receive tax from all rivers and streams through their lowliness: this is the reason for their greatness.

That is why a wise one wanting to rule the people talks of himself as lower than them; and wanting to be able he sets himself back-most.

Thus even if he is higher than them, they don’t feel his weight, and even if he were to go in front of them he is a hindrance to none.

That is why the whole world raises him to glory and no-one is offended by it.

Because he does not compete, he has no-one envious of him.


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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