Chapter 16 How to return to the root.
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(Version and commentary of He Shanggong in English)


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16. 1  
If one reaches the extreme of emptiness,

致 = 至the extreme. A man who has gained Tao, diminishes the feelings and drives out the desires. The five interiors are quieted down and cleared. He strives for the extreme of emptiness.

If one keeps quietness and firmness,

If one keeps quietness and clarity and acts firmly.

All things together rise.

To rise is the same as to live. All things are together brought to life.

We thereby see their return.

This means: We thereby see that all things without exception return to their origin. This means that man ought to regard the origin as important. important.

Now the full bloom of things,

yun-yun is the fulness of blossoms and leaves.

Everything returns to its root.

This means: Everything without exception withers and dies. Everything returns to its root and then revives.

To return to the root means to rest.

Rest is called the root. The root is peaceful and pliant. Modestly it remains below. Therefore it does not return to death.

This is called to return to life.

This means: To be quiet and peaceful, this is called to return to life and thereby not to die.

To return to life is called lasting eternally.

If one is able to know how to walk eternally in Tao, then one is illuminated.

If one does not know the eternal, disorder causes misfortune to arise.

Who does not know how to walk eternally in Tao, is disordered and hypocritical. Thereby he loses the spirits. Therefore he is unhappy.

Who knows the eternal is called all-embracing.

If one is able to know how to walk eternally in Tao, to abandon the feelings and to forget the desires, then there is nothing one might not embrace.

To be all-embracing is to be universal.

Who embraces everything, is universally just and impartial. Of the vices of the multitude, nothing agrees with him. Universality is royalty.

Who is universally just and impartial, may thereby become king of the empire.

If one justly practises asceticism, then the form becomes united to the spirits and to all beings. He collects his personality.

Royalty is heaven.

If the king possesses Te, he becomes united to the spirits. Then he becomes identical with heaven.

Heaven is Tao.

If his Te identifies him with heaven, then he becomes one with Tao.

Tao is lasting.

After having become one with Tao one is able to last long.

To lose the body is not dangerous.

If one is able to be universal, to be king, to become identical with heaven, to become one with Tao, being these four one is pure and perfect. Without misfortune, without fault, [only] with heaven and earth entirely disappearing, one does not strive for danger and calamity.

- Chinese :

《道德經》: 致虛極,守靜篤。萬物並作,吾以觀復。夫物芸芸,各復歸其根。歸根曰靜,是謂復命。復命曰常,知常曰明。不知常,妄作凶。知常容,容乃公,公乃王,王乃天,天乃道,道乃久,沒身不殆。

《老子河上公章句·歸根》: 致虛極,守靜篤,萬物並作,吾以觀復。夫物芸芸,各復歸其根,歸根曰靜,是謂復命。復命曰常。知常曰明;不知常,妄作凶。知常容,容乃公,公乃王,王乃天,天乃道,道乃久。沒身不殆。

《馬王堆·老子甲道經》: 至虛極也,守情表也。萬物旁作,吾以觀其復也。天物雲雲,各復歸於其□,□□。情,是胃復命。復命,常也;知常,明也;不知常,㠵。㠵作凶。知常容,容乃公,公乃王,王乃天,天乃道,□□□沕身不怠。

《馬王堆·老子乙道經》: 至虛極也,守靜督也。萬物旁作,吾以觀其復也。天物𥘟𥘟,各復歸於其根,曰靜。靜,是胃復命。復命,常也;知常,明也;不知常,芒;芒,作凶;知常容,容乃公,公乃王,□□天,天乃道,道乃沒身不殆。
(⁎)
- He Shanggong (Chinese) :

致虛極,得道之人,捐情去欲,五內清靜,至於虛極。守靜篤,守清靜,行篤厚。萬物並作,作,生也。 萬物並生也。吾以觀復。言吾以觀見萬物無不皆歸其本也。人當念重其本也。夫物芸芸,芸芸者,華葉盛也。各復歸其根,言萬物無不枯落,各復反其根而更生也。歸根曰靜,靜謂根也。 根安靜柔弱,謙卑處下,故不復死也。是謂復命。言安靜者是為復還性命,使不死也。復命曰常。復命使不死,乃道之所常行也。知常曰明;能知道之所常行,則為明。不知常,妄作凶。不知道之所常行,妄作巧詐,則失神明,故凶也。知常容,能知道之所常行,去情忘欲,無所不包容也。容乃公,無所不包容,則公正無私,眾邪莫當。公乃王,公正無私,可以為天下王。治身正則形一,神明千萬,共湊其躬也。王乃天,能王,德合神明,乃與天通。天乃道,德與天通,則與道合同也。道乃久。與道合同,乃能長久。沒身不殆。能公能王,通天合道,四者純備,道德弘遠,無殃無咎,乃與天地俱沒,不危殆也。
(Ⅱ)
- Wing-Tsit Chan (1963) :

Attain complete vacuity. Maintain steadfast quietude.
All things come into being, And I see thereby their return. All things flourish, But each one returns to its root.
This return to its root means tranquillity. It is called returning to its destiny. To return to destiny is called the eternal (Tao). To know the eternal is called enlightenment. Not to know the eternal is to act blindly to result in disaster.
He who knows the eternal is all-embracing. Being all-embracing, he is impartial. Being impartial, he is kingly (universal). Being kingly, he is one with Nature. Being one with Nature, he is in accord with Tao.
Being in accord with Tao, he is everlasting And is free from danger throughout his lifetime.
(Ⅲ)
- Ellen Marie Chen (1989) :

Reach the pole of emptiness (hsü-chi),
Abide in genuine quietude (ching).
Ten thousand beings flourish together,
I am to contemplate (kuan) their return (fu).
Now things grow profusely,
Each again returns (kuei) to its root.
To return to the root is to attain quietude (ching),
It is called to recover life (ming).
To recover life is to attain the Everlasting (ch'ang),
To know the Everlasting (ch'ang) is to be illumined (ming).
Not knowing (chih) the Everlasting (ch'ang),
One commits evils wantonly.
Knowing the Everlasting one becomes all containing (yung).
To be all containing is to be public (kung).
To be public is to be kingly (wang).
To be kingly is to be like heaven.
To be like heaven is to be like Tao.
To be like Tao is to last long.
This is to lose the body without becoming exhausted (pu tai).
(Ⅳ)
- Ch'u Ta-Kao (1904) :

Attain to the goal of absolute vacuity; Keep to the state of perfect peace.
All things come into existence, And thence we see them return. Look at the things that have been flourishing; Each goes back to its origin.
Going back to the origin is called peace; It means reversion to destiny. Reversion to destiny is called eternity. He who knows eternity is called enlightened. He who does not know eternity is running blindly into miseries.
Knowing eternity he is all-embracing. Being all~embracing he can attain magnanimity. Being magnanimous he can attain omnipresence. Being omnipresent he can attain supremacy. Being supreme he can attain Tao.
He who attains Tao is everlasting. Though his body may decay he never perishes.
(Ⅴ)
- World by world translation :

Traditional // simplified // pinyin // definition // dictionary
致 // 致 // zhì // ① adresser ② causer ③ entraîner ④ s'appliquer à // Chinese-French
致 // 致 // zhì // ① to send ② to devote ③ to deliver ④ to cause ⑤ to convey // CC-CEDICT
緻 // 致 // zhì // ① fine ② delicate // CC-CEDICT
虛 // 虚 // xū // ① vide ② inoccupé ③ vacant ④ faux ⑤ faible ⑥ fragile ⑦ en vain // Chinese-French
虛 // 虚 // xū // ① emptiness ② void ③ abstract theory or guiding principles ④ empty or unoccupied ⑤ diffident or timid ⑥ false ⑦ humble or modest ⑧ (of health) weak ⑨ virtual ⑩ in vain // CC-CEDICT
極 // 极 // jí // ① sommet ② extrémité ③ pôle ④ extrêmement // Chinese-French
極 // 极 // jí // ① extremely ② pole (geography, physics) ③ utmost ④ top // CC-CEDICT
守 // 守 // shǒu // ① garder ② défendre ③ monter la garde ④ respecter (une règle) ⑤ être proche de // Chinese-French
守 // 守 // shǒu // ① to guard ② to defend ③ to keep watch ④ to abide by the law ⑤ to observe (rules or ritual) ⑥ nearby ⑦ adjoining // CC-CEDICT
靜 // 静 // jìng // ① calme ② silencieux // Chinese-French
靜 // 静 // jìng // ① still ② calm ③ quiet ④ not moving // CC-CEDICT
篤 // 笃 // dǔ // ① sincère ② ardent ③ grave // Chinese-French
篤 // 笃 // dǔ // ① serious (illness) ② sincere ③ true // CC-CEDICT
萬物 // 万物 // wàn wù // ① tous les êtres vivants // Chinese-French
萬物 // 万物 // wàn wù // ① all living things // CC-CEDICT
並 // 并 // bìng // ① and ② furthermore ③ also ④ together with ⑤ (not) at all ⑥ simultaneously ⑦ to combine ⑧ to join ⑨ to merge // CC-CEDICT
作 // 作 // zuò // ① faire ② apparaître ③ rédiger ④ ouvrage ⑤ oeuvre ⑥ considérer comme // Chinese-French
作 // 作 // zuò // ① to do ② to grow ③ to write or compose ④ to pretend ⑤ to regard as ⑥ to feel ⑦ writings or works // CC-CEDICT
作 // 作 // zuō // ① worker ② workshop ③ (slang) troublesome ④ high-maintenance (person) // CC-CEDICT
吾 // 吾 // wú // ① je ② mon // Chinese-French
吾 // 吾 // wú // ① surname Wu // CC-CEDICT
吾 // 吾 // wú // ① I ② my (old) // CC-CEDICT
以 // 以 // yǐ // ① prendre ② utiliser ③ selon ④ à cause de ⑤ pour // Chinese-French
以 // 以 // yǐ // ① abbr. for Israel 以色列[Yi3 se4 lie4] // CC-CEDICT
以 // 以 // yǐ // ① to use ② by means of ③ according to ④ in order to ⑤ because of ⑥ at (a certain date or place) // CC-CEDICT
㕥 // 以 // yǐ // ① old variant of 以[yi3] // CC-CEDICT
㠯 // 以 // yǐ // ① old variant of 以[yi3] // CC-CEDICT
觀 // 观 // guān // ① regarder avec attention, observer // Chinese-French
觀 // 观 // guān // ① to look at ② to watch ③ to observe ④ to behold ⑤ to advise ⑥ concept ⑦ point of view ⑧ outlook // CC-CEDICT
觀 // 观 // guàn // ① temple taoïste // Chinese-French
觀 // 观 // guàn // ① surname Guan // CC-CEDICT
觀 // 观 // guàn // ① Taoist monastery ② palace gate watchtower ③ platform // CC-CEDICT
復 // 复 // fù // ① to go and return ② to return ③ to resume ④ to return to a normal or original state ⑤ to repeat ⑥ again ⑦ to recover ⑧ to restore ⑨ to turn over ⑩ to reply ⑪ to answer ⑫ to reply to a letter ⑬ to retaliate ⑭ to carry out // CC-CEDICT
夫 // 夫 // fū // ① mari // Chinese-French
夫 // 夫 // fū // ① husband ② man ③ manual worker ④ conscripted laborer (old) // CC-CEDICT
夫 // 夫 // fú // ① (classical) this, that ② he, she, they ③ (exclamatory final particle) ④ (initial particle, introduces an opinion) // CC-CEDICT
物 // 物 // wù // ① objet ② chose ③ être, matière // Chinese-French
物 // 物 // wù // ① thing ② object ③ matter ④ abbr. for physics 物理 // CC-CEDICT
芸芸 // 芸芸 // yún yún // ① numerous ② diverse and varied // CC-CEDICT
各 // 各 // gè // ① chaque ② chacun // Chinese-French
各 // 各 // gè // ① each ② every // CC-CEDICT
復歸 // 复归 // fù guī // ① revenir // Chinese-French
復歸 // 复归 // fù guī // ① to return ② to come back // CC-CEDICT
其 // 其 // qí // ① son ② sa ③ ses ④ leur ⑤ leurs ⑥ il(s) ⑦ elle(s) ⑧ ceci ⑨ cela // Chinese-French
其 // 其 // qí // ① his ② her ③ its ④ their ⑤ that ⑥ such ⑦ it (refers to sth preceding it) // CC-CEDICT
根 // 根 // gēn // ① racine (botanique) ② racine (mathématiques) ③ radical chimique ④ base ⑤ fondement ⑥ pied (d'une montagne) ⑦ origine des choses ⑧ spécificatif des objets longs et minces (cigarettes, troncs d'arbre, cordes, etc.) // Chinese-French
根 // 根 // gēn // ① root ② basis ③ classifier for long slender objects, e.g. cigarettes, guitar strings ④ CL:條|条[tiao2] ⑤ radical (chemistry) // CC-CEDICT
歸根 // 归根 // guī gēn // ① to return home (after a lifetime's absence) ② to go back to one's roots // CC-CEDICT
曰 // 曰 // yuē // ① dire ② appeler // Chinese-French
曰 // 曰 // yuē // ① to speak ② to say // CC-CEDICT
靜 // 静 // jìng // ① calme ② silencieux // Chinese-French
靜 // 静 // jìng // ① still ② calm ③ quiet ④ not moving // CC-CEDICT
是 // 是 // shì // ① être ② oui ③ correct // Chinese-French
是 // 是 // shì // ① is ② are ③ am ④ yes ⑤ to be // CC-CEDICT
昰 // 是 // shì // ① variant of 是[shi4] ② (used in given names) // CC-CEDICT
謂 // 谓 // wèi // ① dire ② adresser la parole ③ être appelé ④ penser // Chinese-French
謂 // 谓 // wèi // ① surname Wei // CC-CEDICT
謂 // 谓 // wèi // ① to speak ② to say ③ to name ④ to designate ⑤ meaning ⑥ sense // CC-CEDICT
復命 // 复命 // fù mìng // ① faire un rapport sur l'accomplissement de sa mission ② faire un rapport de mission ③ debriefing // Chinese-French
復命 // 复命 // fù mìng // ① to report on completion of a mission ② debriefing // CC-CEDICT
復命 // 复命 // fù mìng // ① faire un rapport sur l'accomplissement de sa mission ② faire un rapport de mission ③ debriefing // Chinese-French
復命 // 复命 // fù mìng // ① to report on completion of a mission ② debriefing // CC-CEDICT
曰 // 曰 // yuē // ① dire ② appeler // Chinese-French
曰 // 曰 // yuē // ① to speak ② to say // CC-CEDICT
常 // 常 // cháng // ① souvent ② fréquemment ③ ordinaire ④ commun ⑤ constant ⑥ invariable // Chinese-French
常 // 常 // cháng // ① surname Chang // CC-CEDICT
常 // 常 // cháng // ① always ② ever ③ often ④ frequently ⑤ common ⑥ general ⑦ constant // CC-CEDICT
知 // 知 // zhī // ① savoir ② connaître ③ connaissances // Chinese-French
知 // 知 // zhī // ① to know ② to be aware // CC-CEDICT
常 // 常 // cháng // ① souvent ② fréquemment ③ ordinaire ④ commun ⑤ constant ⑥ invariable // Chinese-French
常 // 常 // cháng // ① surname Chang // CC-CEDICT
常 // 常 // cháng // ① always ② ever ③ often ④ frequently ⑤ common ⑥ general ⑦ constant // CC-CEDICT
曰 // 曰 // yuē // ① dire ② appeler // Chinese-French
曰 // 曰 // yuē // ① to speak ② to say // CC-CEDICT
明 // 明 // míng // ① brillant ② clair ③ comprendre ④ vue ⑤ distinct ⑥ net ⑦ ouvert ⑧ public ⑨ explicite ⑩ prompt ⑪ leste ⑫ prochain ⑬ suivant ⑭ ouvertement // Chinese-French
明 // 明 // míng // ① Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) ② surname Ming ③ Ming (c. 2000 BC), fourth of the legendary Flame Emperors, 炎帝[Yan2 di4] descended from Shennong 神農|神农[Shen2 nong2] Farmer God // CC-CEDICT
明 // 明 // míng // ① bright ② opposite: dark 暗[an4] ③ (of meaning) clear ④ to understand ⑤ next ⑥ public or open ⑦ wise ⑧ generic term for a sacrifice to the gods // CC-CEDICT
不知 // 不知 // bù zhī // ① ne pas savoir ② ne pas comprendre // Chinese-French
不知 // 不知 // bù zhī // ① not to know ② unaware ③ unknowingly ④ fig. not to admit (defeat, hardships, tiredness etc) // CC-CEDICT
常 // 常 // cháng // ① souvent ② fréquemment ③ ordinaire ④ commun ⑤ constant ⑥ invariable // Chinese-French
常 // 常 // cháng // ① surname Chang // CC-CEDICT
常 // 常 // cháng // ① always ② ever ③ often ④ frequently ⑤ common ⑥ general ⑦ constant // CC-CEDICT
妄 // 妄 // wàng // ① faux ② insensé ③ téméraire // Chinese-French
妄 // 妄 // wàng // ① absurd ② fantastic ③ presumptuous ④ rash // CC-CEDICT
作 // 作 // zuò // ① faire ② apparaître ③ rédiger ④ ouvrage ⑤ oeuvre ⑥ considérer comme // Chinese-French
作 // 作 // zuò // ① to do ② to grow ③ to write or compose ④ to pretend ⑤ to regard as ⑥ to feel ⑦ writings or works // CC-CEDICT
作 // 作 // zuō // ① worker ② workshop ③ (slang) troublesome ④ high-maintenance (person) // CC-CEDICT
凶 // 凶 // xiōng // ① méchant ② féroce ③ néfaste ④ acte de violence // Chinese-French
凶 // 凶 // xiōng // ① vicious ② fierce ③ ominous ④ inauspicious ⑤ famine ⑥ variant of 兇|凶[xiong1] // CC-CEDICT
兇 // 凶 // xiōng // ① terrible ② fearful // CC-CEDICT
知 // 知 // zhī // ① savoir ② connaître ③ connaissances // Chinese-French
知 // 知 // zhī // ① to know ② to be aware // CC-CEDICT
常 // 常 // cháng // ① souvent ② fréquemment ③ ordinaire ④ commun ⑤ constant ⑥ invariable // Chinese-French
常 // 常 // cháng // ① surname Chang // CC-CEDICT
常 // 常 // cháng // ① always ② ever ③ often ④ frequently ⑤ common ⑥ general ⑦ constant // CC-CEDICT
容 // 容 // róng // ① expression ② mine ③ aspect ④ contenir ⑤ tolérer ⑥ permettre ⑦ laisser // Chinese-French
容 // 容 // róng // ① surname Rong // CC-CEDICT
容 // 容 // róng // ① to hold ② to contain ③ to allow ④ to tolerate ⑤ appearance ⑥ look ⑦ countenance // CC-CEDICT
容 // 容 // róng // ① expression ② mine ③ aspect ④ contenir ⑤ tolérer ⑥ permettre ⑦ laisser // Chinese-French
容 // 容 // róng // ① surname Rong // CC-CEDICT
容 // 容 // róng // ① to hold ② to contain ③ to allow ④ to tolerate ⑤ appearance ⑥ look ⑦ countenance // CC-CEDICT
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① être ② mais ③ cependant ④ alors ⑤ donc // Chinese-French
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① to be ② thus ③ so ④ therefore ⑤ then ⑥ only ⑦ thereupon // CC-CEDICT
廼 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
迺 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
公 // 公 // gōng // ① public ② commun ③ équitable ④ mâle ⑤ affaires publiques // Chinese-French
公 // 公 // gōng // ① public ② collectively owned ③ common ④ international (e.g. high seas, metric system, calendar) ⑤ make public ⑥ fair ⑦ just ⑧ Duke, highest of five orders of nobility 五等爵位[wu3 deng3 jue2 wei4] ⑨ honorable (gentlemen) ⑩ father-in-law ⑪ male (animal) // CC-CEDICT
公 // 公 // gōng // ① public ② commun ③ équitable ④ mâle ⑤ affaires publiques // Chinese-French
公 // 公 // gōng // ① public ② collectively owned ③ common ④ international (e.g. high seas, metric system, calendar) ⑤ make public ⑥ fair ⑦ just ⑧ Duke, highest of five orders of nobility 五等爵位[wu3 deng3 jue2 wei4] ⑨ honorable (gentlemen) ⑩ father-in-law ⑪ male (animal) // CC-CEDICT
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① être ② mais ③ cependant ④ alors ⑤ donc // Chinese-French
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① to be ② thus ③ so ④ therefore ⑤ then ⑥ only ⑦ thereupon // CC-CEDICT
廼 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
迺 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
王 // 王 // wáng // ① roi ② prince ③ (nom de famille) // Chinese-French
王 // 王 // wáng // ① surname Wang // CC-CEDICT
王 // 王 // wáng // ① king or monarch ② best or strongest of its type ③ grand ④ great // CC-CEDICT
王 // 王 // wàng // ① régner sur // Chinese-French
王 // 王 // wàng // ① to rule ② to reign over // CC-CEDICT
王 // 王 // wáng // ① roi ② prince ③ (nom de famille) // Chinese-French
王 // 王 // wáng // ① surname Wang // CC-CEDICT
王 // 王 // wáng // ① king or monarch ② best or strongest of its type ③ grand ④ great // CC-CEDICT
王 // 王 // wàng // ① régner sur // Chinese-French
王 // 王 // wàng // ① to rule ② to reign over // CC-CEDICT
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① être ② mais ③ cependant ④ alors ⑤ donc // Chinese-French
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① to be ② thus ③ so ④ therefore ⑤ then ⑥ only ⑦ thereupon // CC-CEDICT
廼 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
迺 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
天 // 天 // tiān // ① ciel ② jour ③ journée ④ temps ⑤ saison ⑥ nature ⑦ univers // Chinese-French
天 // 天 // tiān // ① day ② sky ③ heaven // CC-CEDICT
天 // 天 // tiān // ① ciel ② jour ③ journée ④ temps ⑤ saison ⑥ nature ⑦ univers // Chinese-French
天 // 天 // tiān // ① day ② sky ③ heaven // CC-CEDICT
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① être ② mais ③ cependant ④ alors ⑤ donc // Chinese-French
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① to be ② thus ③ so ④ therefore ⑤ then ⑥ only ⑦ thereupon // CC-CEDICT
廼 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
迺 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
道 // 道 // dào // ① doctrine, raison ② voie ③ dire ④ circuit, intendance // Chinese-French
道 // 道 // dào // ① road ② path ③ CL:條|条[tiao2],股[gu3] ④ principle ⑤ truth ⑥ morality ⑦ reason ⑧ skill ⑨ method ⑩ Dao (of Daoism) ⑪ to say ⑫ to speak ⑬ to talk ⑭ classifier for long thin things (rivers, cracks etc), barriers (walls, doors etc), questions (in an exam etc), commands, courses in a meal, steps in a process ⑮ (old) administrative division (similar to province in Tang times) // CC-CEDICT
道 // 道 // dào // ① doctrine, raison ② voie ③ dire ④ circuit, intendance // Chinese-French
道 // 道 // dào // ① road ② path ③ CL:條|条[tiao2],股[gu3] ④ principle ⑤ truth ⑥ morality ⑦ reason ⑧ skill ⑨ method ⑩ Dao (of Daoism) ⑪ to say ⑫ to speak ⑬ to talk ⑭ classifier for long thin things (rivers, cracks etc), barriers (walls, doors etc), questions (in an exam etc), commands, courses in a meal, steps in a process ⑮ (old) administrative division (similar to province in Tang times) // CC-CEDICT
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① être ② mais ③ cependant ④ alors ⑤ donc // Chinese-French
乃 // 乃 // nǎi // ① to be ② thus ③ so ④ therefore ⑤ then ⑥ only ⑦ thereupon // CC-CEDICT
廼 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
迺 // 乃 // nǎi // ① variant of 乃[nai3] // CC-CEDICT
久 // 久 // jiǔ // ① longtemps ② de longue date // Chinese-French
久 // 久 // jiǔ // ① (long) time ② (long) duration of time // CC-CEDICT
沒 // 没 // méi // ① ne pas avoir // Chinese-French
沒 // 没 // méi // ① (negative prefix for verbs) ② have not ③ not // CC-CEDICT
沒 // 没 // mò // ① noyer ② inonder ③ mourir // Chinese-French
沒 // 没 // mò // ① drowned ② to end ③ to die ④ to inundate // CC-CEDICT
身 // 身 // shēn // ① corps ② vie ③ soi-même // Chinese-French
身 // 身 // shēn // ① body ② life ③ oneself ④ personally ⑤ one's morality and conduct ⑥ the main part of a structure or body ⑦ pregnant ⑧ classifier for sets of clothes: suit, twinset ⑨ Kangxi radical 158 // CC-CEDICT
不 // 不 // bù // ① ne... pas ② non ③ (pour former une question placé à la fin d'une phrase, pour indiquer l'indifférence avec shen me ④ pour indiquer une alternative avec jiu) // Chinese-French
不 // 不 // bù // ① (negative prefix) ② not ③ no // CC-CEDICT
殆 // 殆 // dài // ① danger ② presque ③ à peu près // Chinese-French
殆 // 殆 // dài // ① dangerous ② perilous ③ to endanger ④ almost ⑤ probably ⑥ only // CC-CEDICT
(Ⅵ)
- Yi Wu (1989) :

When one is extremely stilled and free of vain desires,
All things will work together
So that one can watch the changes,
For all things return to their roots:
Their original states without poles.
Returning is completing the cycle of life's work.
The cycling of life is absolute,
Awareness of that absoluteness is wisdom.
Without that wisdom, one may do things willfully
And may hence meet with an early death.
With the wisdom, one can be tolerant.
Being tolerant, one can be just to everything.
Being just, one can be a wise leader,
Being a wise leader, one can fulfill the greatest cause.
Being able to fulfill, one is serving the Way.
By serving the Way, the cause can last,
And will not vanish even after one's death.
(Ⅶ)
- Lynn (2004) :

Their attainment of emptiness absolute and their maintenance of quietude guileless,
The myriad things interact.
I, as such, observe their return.
All things flourish, but each reverts to its roots.
To return to the root is called "quietude," which means to revert to one's destiny, and reversion to one's destiny is called "constancy."
To understand constancy is called "perspicacity."
Not to understand constancy results in errant behavior and, with it, misfortune.
To understand constancy is to embrace all things.
To embrace things is to be impartial.
Such impartiality means true kingship.
With true kingship, he is one with Heaven.
To be one with Heaven means to be one with the Dao.
To be one with the Dao is to be everlasting.
As long as he lives, no danger shall befall him.
(Ⅷ)


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