The Book of the Right Way of Laozi – 58


When government is invisible, the people are honest.
When government is officious, the people are taxed.
Bad luck upholds good luck, which leans on bad luck.
Good luck upholds bad luck, which is concealed within it.
Going to extremes is not the right way.
Seeking extremes precipitates their opposites.
Humanity has been lost in this way for many long hard days.
Truly, therefore, the sage—
Is just but not cruel,
Honest but not hard,
Straightforward but not vulgar,
Bright but not brilliant.