Chapter 28 How to return to simplicity.
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(Version and commentary of He Shanggong in English)


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28. 1  
By knowing one’s femininity and retaining one’s masculinity one becomes the ravine of the empire.

Masculinity exemplifies the exalted, femininity the subordinate. Though men know the exalted of itself, they again retain it by means of the subordinate. If one flees from the strength of masculinity, one becomes united to the weakness of femininity. Who has reached this, to him the empire turns like water gushing into a deep ravine.

If one becomes the empire’s ravine, eternal Te does not depart.

If man is able to stay modestly below, like a deep ravine, then Te is always there. It does not again depart from the self.

One returns to infancy.

One always returns to the intention of becoming like an infant, so stupid and without knowledge.

By knowing one’s whiteness and retaining one’s blackness one becomes the empire’s model.

Whiteness exemplifies enlightenment, blackness silence. Though a man may know himself as enlightened and penetrating, he must keep this state by being silent, as if he were in the darkness and invisible. If this is the case, then he may become the empire’s model, and then his Te will remain forever.

If one becomes the empire’s model, eternal Te does not change.

If a man is able to become the empire’s model, then Te forever remains within his self and will not change again.

One returns to the culmination of non-existence.

If Te does not change, then one will be long-lived. One causes the body to return to the culmination of the infinite.

By knowing one’s splendour and retaining one’s disgrace one becomes the valley of the empire.

Splendour exemplifies estimation, disgrace exemplifies stainedness. Who knows that his self is held in estimation, must retain this by stainedness. If he is of this kind, then the empire will turn to him like water rushing down a valley.

If one becomes the empire’s valley, then eternal Te remains.

足 = 止to remain. If a man is able to become the empire’s valley, then eternal Te remains within his self.

One returns to simplicity.

One must induce one’s personality to return to reality and simplicity and not to outward appearance.

When unwrought wood is cut up, it is turned into tools.

Tools are useful. By cutting up all things one turns them into tools for use. When Tao is cut up, then it forms spirits. When it dissolves, it becomes sun and moon. When it is divided, the five elements are created.

If the saint uses them, then they become the foremost of the officials.

If the saint raises them into use, they become the foremost of all officials.

Therefore a great government does not hurt.

If a saint uses them, then he governs the empire by means of the great Tao. Thereby he hurts nothing. If one practises asceticism, then one is to govern and to quiet the desires by means of the great Tao and not to hurt the spirits.

- Chinese :

《道德經》: 知其雄,守其雌,為天下谿。為天下谿,常德不離,復歸於嬰兒。知其白,守其黑,為天下式。為天下式,常德不忒,復歸於無極。知其榮,守其辱,為天下谷。為天下谷,常德乃足,復歸於樸。樸散則為器,聖人用之,則為官長,故大制不割。

《老子河上公章句·反朴》: 知其雄,守其雌,為天下谿。為天下谿,常德不離,復歸於嬰兒。知其白守其黑,為天下式。為天下式,常德不忒,復歸於無極。知其榮,守其辱,為天下谷。為天下谷,常德乃足復歸於樸。樸散則為器,聖人用之則為官長。故大制不割。

《馬王堆·老子甲道經》: 知其雄,守其雌,為天下溪。為天下溪,恆德不雞。恆德不雞,復歸嬰兒。知其白,守其辱,為天下浴。為天下浴,恆德乃□德乃□□□□□。知其,守其黑,為天下式。為天下式,恆德不貣。德不貣,復歸於無極。楃散□□□□人用則為官長。夫大制無割。

《馬王堆·老子乙道經》: 知其雄,守其雌,為天下鷄。為天下鷄,恆德不離。恆德不離,復□□□□□其白,守其辱,為天下○浴。為天下浴,恆德乃足。恆德乃足,復歸於樸。知其白,守其黑,為天下式。為天下式,恆德不貸。恆德不貸,復歸於無極。樸散則為器,聖人用,則為官長,夫大制無割。
(⁎)
- He Shanggong (Chinese) :

知其雄,守其雌,為天下谿。雄以喻尊,雌以喻卑。人雖自知其尊顯,當復守之以卑微,去雄之強梁,就雌之柔和,如是則天下歸之,如水流入深谿也。為天下谿,常德不離,人能謙下如深谿,則德常在,不復離於己。復歸於嬰兒。當復歸志於嬰兒,惷然而無所知也。知其白守其黑,為天下式。白以喻昭昭,黑以喻默默。人雖自知昭昭,明白當復守之以默默,如闇昧無所見,如是則可為天下法式,則德常在。為天下式,常德不忒,人能為天下法式,則德常在於己,不復差忒。復歸於無極。德不差忒,則常生久壽,歸身於無窮極也。知其榮,守其辱,為天下谷。榮以喻尊貴,辱以喻污濁。人能知己之有榮貴,當復守之以污濁,如是則天下歸之,如水流入深谷也。為天下谷,常德乃足足,止也。人能為天下谷,則德乃常止於己。復歸於樸。復當歸身於質樸,不復為文飾。樸散則為器,器,用也。萬物之樸散則為器用也。若道散則為神明,流為日月,分為五行也。聖人用之則為官長。聖人升用則為百官之元長也。故大制不割。聖人用之則以大道制御天下,無所傷割,治身則以大道制御情欲,不害精神也。
(Ⅱ)
- Wing-Tsit Chan (1963) :

He who knows the male and keeps to the female Becomes the ravine of the world. Being the ravine of the world, He will never depart from eternal virtue, But returns to a state of infancy.
He who knows the white and yet keeps to the black Becomes the model for the world. Being the model for the world, He will never deviate from eternal virtue, But returns to the state of the non-ultimate.
He who knows glory but keeps to humility Becomes the valley of the world, He will be proficient in eternal virtue, And returns to the state of simplicity (uncarved wood).
When the uncarved wood is broken up, it is turned into concrete things. But when the sage uses it, he becomes the leading official. Therefore the great ruler does not cut up.
(Ⅲ)
- Ellen Marie Chen (1989) :

To know (chih) the male,
But to abide (shou) by the female (tz'u),
Is to be the valley (ch'i) of the world.
Being the valley of the world,
And departing (li) not from the everlasting power (ch'ang te),
One again returns to the infant (ying erh).
To know (chih) the white (pe),
But to abide (shou) by the black (heh),
Is to be the model (shih) of the world.
Being the model of the world,
And deviating (t'eh) not from the everlasting power,
One again returns to the unlimited (wu-chi).
To know (chih) the illustrious (yung),
But to abide (shou) by the obscure (ju),
Is to be the valley (ku) of the world.
Being the valley of the world,
One's everlasting power (ch'ang te) being full,
One again returns to the uncarved wood (p'u).
The uncarved wood disperses to become vessels (ch'i),
To be used (yung) by the sage as officials.
Therefore a great institution does not mutilate (ko).
(Ⅳ)
- Ch'u Ta-Kao (1904) :

He who knows the masculine and yet keeps to the feminine Will become a channel drawing all the world towards it; Being a channel of the world, he will not be severed from the eternal virtue, And then he can return again to the state of infancy.
He who knows the white and yet keeps to the black Will become the standard of the world; Being the standard of the world, with him eternal virtue will never falter, And then he can return again to the absolute.
He who knows honour and yet keeps to humility Will become a valley that receives all the world into it; Being a valley of the world, with him eternal virtue Will be complete, And then he can return again to wholeness.
Wholeness, when divided, will make vessels of utility; These when employed by the Sage will become officials and chiefs. However, for a great function no discrimination is needed.
(Ⅴ)
- World by world translation :

Traditional // simplified // pinyin // definition // dictionary
知 // 知 // zhī // ① savoir ② connaître ③ connaissances // Chinese-French
知 // 知 // zhī // ① to know ② to be aware // 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
雄 // 雄 // xióng // ① mâle ② grand ③ grandiose ④ puissant // Chinese-French
雄 // 雄 // xióng // ① male ② staminate ③ grand ④ imposing ⑤ powerful ⑥ mighty ⑦ person or state having great power and influence // 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
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
雌 // 雌 // cí // ① femelle // Chinese-French
雌 // 雌 // cí // ① female ② Taiwan pr. [ci1] // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wèi // ① because of ② for ③ to // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wéi // ① as (in the capacity of) ② to take sth as ③ to act as ④ to serve as ⑤ to behave as ⑥ to become ⑦ to be ⑧ to do ⑨ by (in the passive voice) // CC-CEDICT
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① empire céleste // Chinese-French
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① land under heaven ② the whole world ③ the whole of China ④ realm ⑤ rule // CC-CEDICT
谿 // 溪 // xī // ① ruisseau // Chinese-French
谿 // 溪 // xī // ① variant of 溪[xi1] // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wèi // ① because of ② for ③ to // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wéi // ① as (in the capacity of) ② to take sth as ③ to act as ④ to serve as ⑤ to behave as ⑥ to become ⑦ to be ⑧ to do ⑨ by (in the passive voice) // CC-CEDICT
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① empire céleste // Chinese-French
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① land under heaven ② the whole world ③ the whole of China ④ realm ⑤ rule // CC-CEDICT
谿 // 溪 // xī // ① ruisseau // Chinese-French
谿 // 溪 // xī // ① variant of 溪[xi1] // CC-CEDICT
常德 // 常德 // cháng dé // ① Changde // Chinese-French
常德 // 常德 // cháng dé // ① Changde prefecture level city in Hunan // 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
離 // 离 // lí // ① de ② quitter ③ se séparer // Chinese-French
離 // 离 // lí // ① surname Li // CC-CEDICT
離 // 离 // lí // ① to leave ② to part from ③ to be away from ④ (in giving distances) from ⑤ without (sth) ⑥ independent of ⑦ one of the Eight Trigrams 八卦[ba1 gua4], symbolizing fire ⑧ ☲ // 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
於 // 于 // yú // ① dans ② à ③ de ④ par ⑤ que // Chinese-French
於 // 于 // yú // ① in ② at ③ to ④ from ⑤ by ⑥ than ⑦ out of // CC-CEDICT
於 // 於 // wū // ① en ② dans ③ pour ④ par // Chinese-French
於 // 於 // wū // ① (literary) Oh! ② Ah! // CC-CEDICT
於 // 於 // yū // ① surname Yu ② Taiwan pr. [Yu2] // CC-CEDICT
嬰兒 // 婴儿 // yīng ér // ① bébé ② nouveau-né // Chinese-French
嬰兒 // 婴儿 // yīng ér // ① infant ② baby ③ CL:個|个[ge4] ④ lead (Pb) // 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
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
白 // 白 // bái // ① blanc ② clair ③ pur ④ en vain // Chinese-French
白 // 白 // bái // ① surname Bai // CC-CEDICT
白 // 白 // bái // ① white ② snowy ③ pure ④ bright ⑤ empty ⑥ blank ⑦ plain ⑧ clear ⑨ to make clear ⑩ in vain ⑪ gratuitous ⑫ free of charge ⑬ reactionary ⑭ anti-communist ⑮ funeral ⑯ to stare coldly ⑰ to write wrong character ⑱ to state ⑲ to explain ⑳ vernacular Ⓐ spoken lines in opera // 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
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
黑 // 黑 // hēi // ① noir ② sombre ③ secret // Chinese-French
黑 // 黑 // hēi // ① abbr. for Heilongjiang province 黑龍江|黑龙江[Hei1 long2 jiang1] // CC-CEDICT
黑 // 黑 // hēi // ① black ② dark ③ sinister ④ secret ⑤ shady ⑥ illegal ⑦ to hide (sth) away ⑧ to vilify ⑨ (loanword) to hack (computing) // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wèi // ① because of ② for ③ to // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wéi // ① as (in the capacity of) ② to take sth as ③ to act as ④ to serve as ⑤ to behave as ⑥ to become ⑦ to be ⑧ to do ⑨ by (in the passive voice) // CC-CEDICT
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① empire céleste // Chinese-French
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① land under heaven ② the whole world ③ the whole of China ④ realm ⑤ rule // CC-CEDICT
式 // 式 // shì // ① type ② modèle ③ style ④ forme ⑤ cérémonie ⑥ rituel ⑦ formule ⑧ mode ⑨ à la manière de // Chinese-French
式 // 式 // shì // ① type ② form ③ pattern ④ style // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wèi // ① because of ② for ③ to // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wéi // ① as (in the capacity of) ② to take sth as ③ to act as ④ to serve as ⑤ to behave as ⑥ to become ⑦ to be ⑧ to do ⑨ by (in the passive voice) // CC-CEDICT
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① empire céleste // Chinese-French
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① land under heaven ② the whole world ③ the whole of China ④ realm ⑤ rule // CC-CEDICT
式 // 式 // shì // ① type ② modèle ③ style ④ forme ⑤ cérémonie ⑥ rituel ⑦ formule ⑧ mode ⑨ à la manière de // Chinese-French
式 // 式 // shì // ① type ② form ③ pattern ④ style // CC-CEDICT
常德 // 常德 // cháng dé // ① Changde // Chinese-French
常德 // 常德 // cháng dé // ① Changde prefecture level city in Hunan // 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
忒 // 忒 // tè // ① to err ② to change // CC-CEDICT
忒 // 忒 // tēi // ① excès // Chinese-French
忒 // 忒 // tēi // ① (dialect) too ② very ③ also pr. [tui1] // 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
於 // 于 // yú // ① dans ② à ③ de ④ par ⑤ que // Chinese-French
於 // 于 // yú // ① in ② at ③ to ④ from ⑤ by ⑥ than ⑦ out of // CC-CEDICT
於 // 於 // wū // ① en ② dans ③ pour ④ par // Chinese-French
於 // 於 // wū // ① (literary) Oh! ② Ah! // CC-CEDICT
於 // 於 // yū // ① surname Yu ② Taiwan pr. [Yu2] // CC-CEDICT
無極 // 无极 // wú jí // ① éternel ② illimité // Chinese-French
無極 // 无极 // wú jí // ① Wuji county in Shijiazhuang 石家莊地區|石家庄地区[Shi2 jia1 zhuang1 di4 qu1], Hebei ② The Promise (name of film by Chen Kaige) // CC-CEDICT
無極 // 无极 // wú jí // ① everlasting ② unbounded // 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
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
榮 // 荣 // róng // ① prospère ② gloire // Chinese-French
榮 // 荣 // róng // ① surname Rong // CC-CEDICT
榮 // 荣 // róng // ① glory ② honor ③ thriving // 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
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
辱 // 辱 // rǔ // ① insulter ② humilier ③ humiliation ④ honte // Chinese-French
辱 // 辱 // rǔ // ① disgrace ② dishonor ③ to insult ④ to bring disgrace or humiliation to ⑤ to be indebted to ⑥ self-deprecating ⑦ Taiwan pr. [ru4] // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wèi // ① because of ② for ③ to // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wéi // ① as (in the capacity of) ② to take sth as ③ to act as ④ to serve as ⑤ to behave as ⑥ to become ⑦ to be ⑧ to do ⑨ by (in the passive voice) // CC-CEDICT
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① empire céleste // Chinese-French
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① land under heaven ② the whole world ③ the whole of China ④ realm ⑤ rule // CC-CEDICT
谷 // 谷 // gǔ // ① vallée ② céréales ③ grains ④ millet // Chinese-French
谷 // 谷 // gǔ // ① surname Gu // CC-CEDICT
谷 // 谷 // gǔ // ① valley // CC-CEDICT
穀 // 谷 // gǔ // ① grain ② corn // CC-CEDICT
谷 // 谷 // yù // ① vallée ② céréales ③ grains ④ millet // Chinese-French
為 // 为 // wèi // ① because of ② for ③ to // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wéi // ① as (in the capacity of) ② to take sth as ③ to act as ④ to serve as ⑤ to behave as ⑥ to become ⑦ to be ⑧ to do ⑨ by (in the passive voice) // CC-CEDICT
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① empire céleste // Chinese-French
天下 // 天下 // tiān xià // ① land under heaven ② the whole world ③ the whole of China ④ realm ⑤ rule // CC-CEDICT
谷 // 谷 // gǔ // ① vallée ② céréales ③ grains ④ millet // Chinese-French
谷 // 谷 // gǔ // ① surname Gu // CC-CEDICT
谷 // 谷 // gǔ // ① valley // CC-CEDICT
穀 // 谷 // gǔ // ① grain ② corn // CC-CEDICT
谷 // 谷 // yù // ① vallée ② céréales ③ grains ④ millet // Chinese-French
常德 // 常德 // cháng dé // ① Changde // Chinese-French
常德 // 常德 // cháng dé // ① Changde prefecture level city in Hunan // 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
足 // 足 // zú // ① pied ② au moins ③ suffisant // Chinese-French
足 // 足 // zú // ① foot ② to be sufficient ③ ample // CC-CEDICT
足 // 足 // jù // ① excessive // 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
於 // 于 // yú // ① dans ② à ③ de ④ par ⑤ que // Chinese-French
於 // 于 // yú // ① in ② at ③ to ④ from ⑤ by ⑥ than ⑦ out of // CC-CEDICT
於 // 於 // wū // ① en ② dans ③ pour ④ par // Chinese-French
於 // 於 // wū // ① (literary) Oh! ② Ah! // CC-CEDICT
於 // 於 // yū // ① surname Yu ② Taiwan pr. [Yu2] // CC-CEDICT
樸 // 朴 // pǔ // ① simple // Chinese-French
樸 // 朴 // pǔ // ① plain and simple ② Taiwan pr. [pu2] // CC-CEDICT
樸 // 朴 // pǔ // ① simple // Chinese-French
樸 // 朴 // pǔ // ① plain and simple ② Taiwan pr. [pu2] // CC-CEDICT
散 // 散 // sàn // ① se disperser ② diffuser ③ dissiper // Chinese-French
散 // 散 // sàn // ① to scatter ② to break up (a meeting etc) ③ to disperse ④ to disseminate ⑤ to dispel ⑥ (coll.) to sack // CC-CEDICT
㪚 // 散 // sàn // ① variant of 散[san4] // CC-CEDICT
散 // 散 // sǎn // ① se détacher ② se disperser ③ dispersé ④ éparpillé // Chinese-French
散 // 散 // sǎn // ① scattered ② loose ③ to come loose ④ to fall apart ⑤ leisurely ⑥ powdered medicine // CC-CEDICT
則 // 则 // zé // ① règle ② règlement ③ alors ④ donc // Chinese-French
則 // 则 // zé // ① (conjunction used to express contrast with a previous clause) but ② then ③ standard ④ norm ⑤ principle ⑥ to imitate ⑦ to follow ⑧ classifier for written items // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wèi // ① because of ② for ③ to // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wéi // ① as (in the capacity of) ② to take sth as ③ to act as ④ to serve as ⑤ to behave as ⑥ to become ⑦ to be ⑧ to do ⑨ by (in the passive voice) // CC-CEDICT
器 // 器 // qì // ① ustensile ② appareil ③ objet ④ organe ⑤ capacité ⑥ talent // Chinese-French
器 // 器 // qì // ① device ② tool ③ utensil ④ CL:臺|台[tai2] // CC-CEDICT
聖人 // 圣人 // shèng rén // ① saint // Chinese-French
聖人 // 圣人 // shèng rén // ① saint ② sage ③ refers to Confucius 孔子[Kong3 zi3] ④ the current reigning Emperor // CC-CEDICT
用 // 用 // yòng // ① utiliser ② employer ③ avoir à faire ceci ou cela ④ manger ou boire ⑤ frais ou dépenses ⑥ utilité ⑦ c'est pourquoi ⑧ donc ⑨ par conséquent // Chinese-French
用 // 用 // yòng // ① to use ② to employ ③ to have to ④ to eat or drink ⑤ expense or outlay ⑥ usefulness ⑦ hence ⑧ therefore // CC-CEDICT
之 // 之 // zhī // ① (remplaçant une personne ou une chose comme complément) ② (particule possessive dans différentes expressions) // Chinese-French
之 // 之 // zhī // ① (possessive particle, literary equivalent of 的[de5]) ② him ③ her ④ it // CC-CEDICT
則 // 则 // zé // ① règle ② règlement ③ alors ④ donc // Chinese-French
則 // 则 // zé // ① (conjunction used to express contrast with a previous clause) but ② then ③ standard ④ norm ⑤ principle ⑥ to imitate ⑦ to follow ⑧ classifier for written items // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wèi // ① because of ② for ③ to // CC-CEDICT
為 // 为 // wéi // ① as (in the capacity of) ② to take sth as ③ to act as ④ to serve as ⑤ to behave as ⑥ to become ⑦ to be ⑧ to do ⑨ by (in the passive voice) // CC-CEDICT
官 // 官 // guān // ① mandarin ② officiel ③ public // Chinese-French
官 // 官 // guān // ① surname Guan // CC-CEDICT
官 // 官 // guān // ① government official ② governmental ③ official ④ public ⑤ organ of the body ⑥ CL:個|个[ge4] // CC-CEDICT
長 // 长 // cháng // ① long ② durable // Chinese-French
長 // 长 // cháng // ① length ② long ③ forever ④ always ⑤ constantly // CC-CEDICT
長 // 长 // zhǎng // ① chef ② tête ③ aîné ④ grandir ⑤ développer ⑥ accroître ⑦ renforcer // Chinese-French
長 // 长 // zhǎng // ① chief ② head ③ elder ④ to grow ⑤ to develop ⑥ to increase ⑦ to enhance // CC-CEDICT
故 // 故 // gù // ① incident ② cause ③ à dessein ④ exprès ⑤ raison ⑥ ancien ⑦ mourir // Chinese-French
故 // 故 // gù // ① happening ② instance ③ reason ④ cause ⑤ intentional ⑥ former ⑦ old ⑧ friend ⑨ therefore ⑩ hence ⑪ (of people) to die, dead // CC-CEDICT
大 // 大 // dà // ① grand ② massif // Chinese-French
大 // 大 // dà // ① big ② huge ③ large ④ major ⑤ great ⑥ wide ⑦ deep ⑧ older (than) ⑨ oldest ⑩ eldest ⑪ greatly ⑫ very much ⑬ (dialect) father ⑭ father's elder or younger brother // CC-CEDICT
大 // 大 // dài // ① docteur ② médecin // Chinese-French
大 // 大 // dài // ① see 大夫[dai4 fu5] // CC-CEDICT
制 // 制 // zhì // ① system ② to control ③ to regulate ④ variant of 製|制[zhi4] // CC-CEDICT
製 // 制 // zhì // ① fabriquer ② manufacturer ③ élaborer ④ contrôler ⑤ restreindre ⑥ système ⑦ régime // Chinese-French
製 // 制 // zhì // ① to manufacture ② to make // 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
割 // 割 // gē // ① couper // Chinese-French
割 // 割 // gē // ① to cut ② to cut apart // CC-CEDICT
(Ⅵ)
- Yi Wu (1989) :

One keeps weakness while knowing what strength is,
And serves as the humblest brook for the world.
Being the humblest, one can receive best
Until one returns to be the weakest infant.
One keeps black while knowing what white is,
And serves as a basic model for the world.
Being the basic model, one can receive properly
Until one returns to the oneness without polar opposition.
One keeps disgrace while knowing what glory is,
And serves as the lowest valley for the world.
Being the lowest, one can receive enough
To return to the most original simplicity.
Followed by people, this simplicity can shape the world
The wise use it as the example for the government.
The big system is, therefore, an indivisible simple whole.
(Ⅶ)
- Lynn (2004) :

He who knows the male yet sustains the female will be a river valley for all under Heaven.
He who is a river valley for all under Heaven never separates himself from constant virtue and always reverts to the infant.
He who knows the white yet sustains the black will be a model for all under Heaven.
He who is a model for all under Heaven never deviates from constant virtue
And always reverts to the infinite.
He who knows glory yet sustains disgrace will be a valley for all under Heaven.
He who is a valley for all under Heaven is filled completely by constant virtue, for he always reverts to the uncarved block.
When the uncarved block fragments, it turns into implements.
As the sage would make use of them, he stands as chief of officials over them.
Thus the great carver never cuts.
(Ⅷ)


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