Chapter 34 from the Tao Te Ching

I love to read the Tao Te Ching, spiritually I find many of its chapters to be something with which I have a great internal resonance. I have often felt as though our concepts of God are all too personified; I think we choose to view God this way because we are persons with being, so we naturally see all things from this vantage point. Deep down within me, though, there has honestly been a disconnect with that idea. I do not want to try to define God, nor personify God, but I appreciate searching for, encountering and wondering at what it is that connects with the physical world and the intangibilities of our spiritualities.

For that reason, I appreciate the unnamed connectedness that is spoken of in chapter 34.
Enjoy!   I will render it from two different translated sources:

This first translation is by Charles Muller 

The Tao is like a great flooding river. How can it be directed to the left or the right?

The myriad of things rely on it for their life but do not distinguish it.

It brings to completion but cannot be said to exist.

It clothes and feeds all things without lording over them.

It is always desireless, so we call it “the small.”

The myriad things return to it and it doesn’t exact lordship

Thus it can be called “great.”

Till the end, it does not regard itself as Great.

Therefore it actualizes its greatness.

This next translation of the same chapter is by Stephen Addiss and Stanley Lombardo. 

Great tao overflows

To the left    To the right.

All beings owe their life to it

And do not depart from it.

it acts without a name.

It clothes and nourishes all beings

But does not become their master.

Enduring without desire,

it may be called slight.

All beings return to it,

But it does not become their master.

It may be called immense.
By not making itself great,

It can do great things.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s