The Book of the Right Way of Laozi – 74.

74

The people don’t fear death.
What a burden is the fear of death.
But even if people were to fear death
And an executioner were willing
Who would dare
To execute such a criminal plan.
Yet the state has always punished murder with murder,
Assuming responsibility for killing from death itself.
Trying to supplant nature is like trying to supplant the master carpenter.
The man who tries to supplant the master carpenter
Is unlikely not to hurt his hand!

民不畏死,奈何以死懼之?若使民常畏死,而為奇者,吾得執而殺之,孰敢?常有司殺者殺。夫司殺者,是大匠斲;夫代大匠斲者,希有不傷其手矣。

Advertisements