The Dao De Jing
PART ONE  DAO (THE WAY)
5th page 17 - 22

a modern interpretation of lao tzu
perpetrated by Ron Hogan

17.

When a Master takes charge,
hardly anybody notices.
The next best leader
is obeyed out of love.
After that,
there's the leader obeyed out of fear.
The worst leader is one who is hated.

Trust and respect people.
That's how you earn
their trust and respect.

The Masters don't give orders;
they work with everybody else.
When the job's done,
people are amazed
at what they accomplished.

 

18.

When people lose touch with Dao,
they start talking about
"righteousness" and "sanctity."

When people forget what's true,
they start talking about
"self-evident truths."

When people have no respect
for one another,
they start talking about
"political correctness"
and "family values."

When the nation is unstable,
people start talking about "patriotism."

 

19.

Get rid of sanctity.
People will understand the truth
and be happier.

Get rid of morality.
People will respect each other
and do what's right.

Get rid of value and profit.
People will not steal
if they do not desire.

If that's not possible, go to Plan B:
Be simple. Be real.
Do your work as best you can.
Don't think about what you get for it.
Stay focused. Get rid of all your crap.

 

20.

Don't spend too much time
thinking about stupid shit.

Why should you care
if people agree or disagree with you?

Why should you care
if others find you attractive or not?

Why should you care
about things that worry others?

Call bullshit on all that.

Let other people
get worked up
and try to enjoy themselves.

I'm not going to give myself away.
A baby doesn't know how to smile,
but it's still happy.

Let other people
get excited about stuff.
I'm not going to hang on to anything.
I'm not going to fill my mind with ideas.
I'm not going to get stuck in a rut,
tied down to any one place.

Other people are clever;
I guess I must be stupid.
Other people have goals;
I guess I must be aimless.
Like the wind. Or the waves.

I'm not like other people.
I'm getting right with Tao.

 

 

 

21.

A Master stays focused on Dao.
Nothing else, just Dao.

But you can't pin Dao down--
you can't even see it!
How are you supposed to focus on something like that?

Just remember what Lao Tzu said:
The universe began as a void.
The void fills with images.
Images lead to the creation of objects.
And every object has Dao at its core.

That's the way it's been,
ever since the world began.
How can I be so sure?
I just know.

22.

Learn how to stand still
if you want to go places.
Get on your knees
if you want to stand tall.
If you want wisdom,
empty your mind.
If you want the world,
renounce your riches.
Push yourself until you're exhausted,
and then you'll find your strength.

You can go far
if you don't have anything to carry.
The more you acquire,
the less you can really see.

A Master takes this to heart
and sets an example
for everybody else.

She doesn't show off
so people take notice.
She's not out to prove anything
so people take her at her word.
She doesn't brag about herself
but people know what she's done.
She hasn't got an agenda
but people know what she can do.
She's not out to get anybody
so nobody can get in her way.

"Learn how to stand still
if you want to go places."
That's not as crazy as it sounds.
Get in touch with Tao,
and you'll see what I mean.

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Dao De Jing Page 6 Chapters 23 - 25    Dao De Jing Menu

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