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Wen-tzu | Understanding the Mysteries | 67


Lao-tzu said:

Human feelings are such that people submit to virtue rather than force.

Virtue is in what you give, not in what you get. Therefore when sages want to be valued by others, first they values others, when they want to be respected by others, first they respect others. When they want to overcome others, first the overcome themselves, when they want to humble others, first they humble themselves. So they are both noble and lowly, using the Way to adjust and control this.

The sage kings of ancient times spoke humbly to others and placed themselves after others.

This is why he world gladly promoted them and did not tire of them, supported them without considering it a burden.

So if you know how giving becomes taking and deference becomes precedence, then you are close to the Way.

Translated by Thomas Cleary

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