The Book of the Right Way of Laozi – 2


Everyone under the sun knows that by taking the beautiful as beautiful, ugliness follows.
Everyone knows that by taking the good as good, evil follows.
Therefore, causes bring about their opposite effects. Difficult and easy complete each other.
Long and short inform each other; above and below overturn each other.
Past and future harmonize together.
Truly, because the sage lives effortlessly he is effective.
He preaches without speaking.
He sees all things as they are, but does not relinquish them.
They appear, yet he does not hold onto them. He acts, yet does not depend on them.
He is accomplished, yet does not dwell on his accomplishments.
Truly, a man alone is at home everywhere.

天 下 皆 知 美 之 為 美 , 斯 惡 已 。
皆 知 善 之 為 善 , 斯 不 善 已 。
有 無 相 生 , 難 易 相 成 , 長 短 相 形 ,
高 下 相 盈 , 音 聲 相 和 , 前 後 相 隨 。
恆 也 。 是 以 聖 人 處 無 為 之 事 ,
行 不 言 之 教 ﹔ 萬 物 作 而 弗 始 ,
生 而 弗 有 , 為 而 弗 恃 , 功 成 而 不 居 。
夫 唯 弗 居 , 是 以 不 去 。


Beauty posits ugliness;
Goodness posits badness.
Birth and death posit life;
Difficulty and ease posit vitality;
Long and short posit horizontal space.
Height and depth posit vertical space;
Pitch and timbre posit music;
Past and future posit time.
Thus, the sage is effortlessly effective and teaches wordlessly.
Everything appears, yet he disdains nothing;
He gives himself up to all, yet he does not seek to control aught;
Everything reacts to him, yet he does not depend on anything.
He acts, but does not think about himself;
Because he takes nothing for himself, everything comes to him.