2/02/2015

Turning back

Knowing man
and staying woman,
be the riverbed of the world.
Being the world's riverbed
of eternal unfailing power
is to go back again to be newborn.

Knowing light
and staying dark,
be a pattern to the world.
Being the world's great pattern
of eternal unerring power
is to go back again to boundlessness.

Knowing glory
and staying modest,
be the valley of the world.
Being the world's valley
of eternal inexhaustible power
is to go back again to the natural.

Natural wood is cut up
and made into useful things.
Wise souls are used
to make into leaders.
Just so, a great carving
is done without cutting.

--Ursula K. Le Guin's translation of Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching, book 1, chapter 28

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