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"Hard rains do not last all day."

Tao Te Ching - Chapter 23

Tao Te Ching, by Lao Tzu.

The Taoist Classic by Lao Tzu
Translated and Explained


23

To be of few words is natural.


Strong winds do not last all morning,

Hard rains do not last all day.

What cause them?

Heaven and Earth.

If Heaven and Earth are unable to persist,

How could man?


Those who follow the Way are one with the Way.

Those who live virtuously are one with virtue.

Those who deprive themselves are one with deprivation.


Those who are one with the Way are welcomed by the Way.

Those who are one with virtue are welcomed by virtue.

Those who are one with deprivation are deprived of deprivation.


Those who do not show trust will not be trusted.



Deprived of Deprivation

Greed and excess are not kindly treated by nature. Every culture contains several examples of this in myths, fables, and historical records. Lao Tzu states it several times in his book. Here, he also points out that sacrifice brings its very own form of reward: Those who are willing to make sacrifices will often find that they avoid them. They are deprived of deprivation.

       Lao Tzu plays with words, but not with their meaning. The nature of deprivation is such that those who welcome it will be deprived of it. Deprivation ignores them. Their sacrifice is not called for, just because they willingly offer it.

       This also means that those who try to avoid it will get it in abundance. What you try to escape is exactly what will hunt you, like the predator does its prey. Living is not for free. Those who try to escape the costs will be charged double and triple, whereas those who willingly open their purse will find it untouched. The major costs in life appear for those who reject them.

       There is what we call poetic justice to life. From those who take indiscriminately, there will be taken. To those who give willingly, there will be given. Life is a puzzle of paradoxes, making sense only at a distance.

       So, when Lao Tzu concludes in the last line, which seems to be only vaguely connected to this chapter, that you must show trust to be trusted, then he means it to be true also for your relation to nature and its Way. Those who volunteer to make sacrifices have that trust, and therefore the Way of nature goes their way.

       It's easier said than done, but accepting life as it unfolds in front of you is the most rewarding way through it.

© Stefan Stenudd.

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Tao Te Ching Explained


Preface


Introduction


Literature


The 81 Chapters of Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu
translated and explained by Stefan Stenudd.
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Tao Te Ching Explained


James Legge's Tao Te Ching


Aleister Crowley's Tao Te Ching


The 1st Chapter of Tao Te Ching in 76 Versions


Lao Tzu - Legendary Author of Tao Te Ching





My Taoism Books:


Tao Te Ching - The Taoism of Lao Tzu Explained. Book by Stefan Stenudd. Tao Te Ching

The Taoism of Lao Tzu Explained. The great Taoist philosophy classic by Lao Tzu translated, and each of the 81 chapters extensively commented. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.

       More about the book here.


Tao Quotes - the Ancient Wisdom of the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu. Book by Stefan Stenudd. Tao Quotes

The Ancient Wisdom of the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu. 389 quotes from the foremost Taoist classic, divided into 51 prominent topics. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.

       More about the book here.



My Other Websites:


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Life Energy

The many ancient and modern life force beliefs all over the world explained.


Creation Myths

Creation stories from around the world, and the ancient cosmology they reveal.


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Other Books by Stefan Stenudd:


Cosmos of the Ancients. Book by Stefan Stenudd. Cosmos of the Ancients

The Greek philosophers and what they thought about cosmology, myth, and the gods. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.


QI - increase your life energy. Book by Stefan Stenudd. Qi - Increase Your Life Energy

The life energy qi (also chi or ki) explained, with exercises on how to awaken, increase and use it. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.


Aikido Principles. Book by Stefan Stenudd. Aikido Principles

Basic Concepts of the Peaceful Martial Art
Aikido principles, philosophy, and basic ideas. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.


Sunday Brunch with the World Maker. Novel by Stefan Stenudd. Sunday Brunch with the World Maker

Fiction. A brunch conversation slips into the mysterious, soon to burst beyond the realm of possibility. Click the image to see the book at Amazon.


Stefan Stenudd, Swedish author of fiction and non-fiction. Stefan Stenudd


About me

I'm a Swedish author and aikido instructor. In addition to fiction, I've written books about Taoism and other East Asian traditions. I'm also an historian of ideas, researching ancient thought and mythology. Click the image to get to my personal website.

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