The Book of the Right Way of Laozi – 80


A small country with a few people
Will not use their machines even if they have them,
Will not travel far if they fear death;
Even if they have boats and carriages they will not use them;
Even if they have armies they will not deploy them,
Using knotted ropes to communicate.
Sweet their food,
Beautiful their attire,
At peace at home,
Laughterful their customs.
Each country is close enough to see its neighbours,
To hear the clucking of their chickens
And the barking of their dogs,
And grow old and die
Without (the people) ever leaving home.