Lao Tse — Tao Te Ching

13. Glory and disgrace are equally feared. Fame is a great distress in life.

What does it mean that glory and disgrace are equally feared? It means that people fight for glory and then fear to lose it.

And what does it mean that fame is a great distress in life? It means that I suffer great distress because I treasure my name.

When I cease treasuring my name, I will have no distress.

Thus, the wise do not seek praise from people. They just serve people self-sacrificingly, therefore, they can live among people in peace. They do not fight against anyone for something, therefore, they are invincible.

14. If you look at Tao, you cannot notice It immediately. This is why It is called hard-to-be-seen.

If you listen to Tao, you cannot hear It immediately. This is why It is called hard-to-be-heard.

If you try to grasp Tao, you cannot reach It. This is why It is called hard-to-be-caught.

In Tao are Those Who fill you with delight!* All Those in Tao are merged into One.

Tao is equal above and below.

Tao, infinite in size, cannot be called by the name of any One of Them.

They come out from Tao manifesting Their Individualities, then come back to the state without individual manifestations in It.

Tao has no corporeal image or face. This is why one regards It as hidden and mysterious.

Meeting Tao, I do not see Its face. Following Tao, I do not see Its back.

By strictly following the primordial Path of transformation of oneself as a consciousness, one can cognize the Eternal Origin. This Path is the Path to Tao.

*  Holy Spirits Who come out from Tao and are coessential to It. In the Christian tradition, They are called, in the aggregate sense, the Holy Spirit.

To be continue.

Classics of Spiritual Philosophy and the Present


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