Chapter 3 How to pacify the people.
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(Version and commentary of He Shanggong in English)


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(⁎)
(Ⅱ)
(Ⅲ)
(Ⅳ)
(Ⅴ)
(Ⅵ)
(Ⅶ)
(Ⅷ)


3. 1  
Not to exalt the worthies

By the worthies the average worthies of the world are meant. They exchange opinions, make themselves intelligible, detach themselves from Tao, adapt themselves to circumstances, avoid reality and effect appearance. Those who are not commendable may not be honoured with functions nor endowed with posts.

does not cause the people to contend.

Do not contend for merit and glory but return to nature.

Not to praise treasures difficult to gain

This means that a prince ought not to rule with a love for precious treasures. He should cast the money [back] to the mountains [where it came from] and throw the pearls and jewels into the lakes.

causes people not to become thieves.

If the superiors turn towards purity, the inferiors are not greedy.

Not to show things desirable

One ought to banish the songs of Cheng and to keep away adulators.

does not lead the mind into confusion.

Do not be bad and excessive nor unstable and confused.

Therefore the government of the saint

This means to govern the country together with the body.

empties their minds and fills their bellies,

Abandon desire and flee from confusion and trouble. Enclose Tao in your bosom, embrace unity and retain the five spirits.

weakens their will

Side with the weak and supple and do not stay with the powerful.

and strengthens their bones.

Save the semen and make its extension difficult. Then the marrow will become filled and the bones firm.

He always induces the people not to know and not to desire.

Return to simplicity and retain purity.

He causes the knowing ones not to dare to act.

Think with awe of the depth and do not take words easy.

If one acts non-action,

To do nothing sets inertness in motion,

then nothing is not governed.

If Te is changed to fullness, then the people are pacified.

- Chinese :

《道德經》: 不尚賢,使民不爭;不貴難得之貨,使民不為盜;不見可欲,使心不亂。是以聖人之治,虛其心,實其腹,弱其志,強其骨。常使民無知無欲。使天知者不敢為也。為無為,則無不治。

《老子河上公章句·安民》: 不尚賢,使民不爭。不貴難得之貨,使民不為盜。不見可欲,使心不亂。是以聖人之治,虛其心,實其腹,弱其志,強其骨。常使民無知無欲。使夫知者不敢為也。為無為,則無不治。

《馬王堆·老子甲道經》: 不上賢,□□□□□□□□□□□民不為□;不□□□□民不亂。是以聲人之□□□□□□□□□□□強其骨,恆使民無知無欲也。使□□□□□□□□□□□□□。

《馬王堆·老子乙道經》: 不上賢,使民不爭;不貴難得之貨,使民不為盜;不見可欲,使民不亂。是以聖人之治也,虛其心,實其腹,弱其志,強其骨。恆使民無知無欲也。使夫知不敢弗為而已,則無不治矣。
(⁎)
- He Shanggong (Chinese) :

不尚賢,賢謂世俗之賢,辯口明文,離道行權,去質為文也。 不尚者,不貴之以祿,不貴之以官。使民不爭。不爭功名,返自然也。不貴難得之貨,言人君不御好珍寶,黃金棄於山,珠玉捐於淵也。使民不為盜。上化清靜,下無貪人。不見可欲,放鄭聲,遠美人。使心不亂。不邪淫,不惑亂也。是以聖人之治,說聖人治國與治身同也。虛其心,除嗜欲,去亂煩。實其腹,懷道抱一守,五神也。弱其志,和柔謙讓,不處權也。強其骨。愛精重施,髓滿骨堅。常使民無知無欲。返樸守淳。使夫知者不敢為也。思慮深,不輕言。為無為,不造作,動因循。則無不治。德化厚,百姓安。
(Ⅱ)
- Wing-Tsit Chan (1963) :

Do not exalt the worthy, so that the people shall not compete.
Do not value rare treasures, so that the people shall not steal.
Do not display objects of desire, so that the people's hearts shall not be disturbed.
Therefore in the government of the sage, He keeps their hearts vacuous, Fills their bellies, Weakens their ambitions, And strengthens their bones,
He always causes his people to be without knowledge (cunning) or desire, And the crafty to be afraid to act.
By acting without action, all things will be in order.
(Ⅲ)
- Ellen Marie Chen (1989) :

Do not honor (shang) the worthy (hsien),
So that the people will not contend (cheng) with one another.
Do not value (kuei) hard-to-get goods,
So that the people will not turn robbers.
Do not show objects of desire (k'o yü),
So that the people's minds (hsin) are not disturbed.
Therefore, when the sage rules:
He empties the minds (hsin) of his people,
Fills their bellies,
Weakens their wills (chih),
And strengthens their bones.
Always he keeps his people in no-knowledge (wu-chih) and no-desire (wu-yü),
Such that he who knows dares not act.
Act by no-action (wu-wei),
Then, nothing is not in order.
(Ⅳ)
- Ch'u Ta-Kao (1904) :

Not exalting the worthy keeps the people from emulation.
Not valuing rare things keeps them from theft.
Not showing what is desirable keeps their hearts from confusion.
Therefore the Sage rules By emptying their hearts, Filling their stomachs, Weakening their ambitions And strengthening their bones.
He always keeps them from knowing what is evil and desiring what is good; thus he gives the crafty ones no chance to act.
He governs by non-action; consequently there is nothing un-governed.
(Ⅴ)
- World by world translation :

Traditional // simplified // pinyin // definition // dictionary
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
尚 // 尚 // shàng // ① estimer ② encore // Chinese-French
尚 // 尚 // shàng // ① surname Shang // CC-CEDICT
尚 // 尚 // shàng // ① still ② yet ③ to value ④ to esteem // CC-CEDICT
賢 // 贤 // xián // ① sage ② homme vertueux ③ sage ④ vertueux // Chinese-French
賢 // 贤 // xián // ① worthy or virtuous person ② honorific used for a person of the same or a younger generation // CC-CEDICT
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① envoyé ② utiliser ③ employer ④ faire faire ⑤ envoyer // Chinese-French
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① to make ② to cause ③ to enable ④ to use ⑤ to employ ⑥ to send ⑦ to instruct sb to do sth ⑧ envoy ⑨ messenger // CC-CEDICT
民 // 民 // mín // ① peuple ② gens du commun // Chinese-French
民 // 民 // mín // ① surname Min // CC-CEDICT
民 // 民 // mín // ① the people ② nationality ③ citizen // CC-CEDICT
不爭 // 不争 // bù zhēng // ① widely known ② incontestable ③ undeniable ④ to not strive for ⑤ to not contend for // 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
貴 // 贵 // guì // ① cher ② coûteux ③ précieux // Chinese-French
貴 // 贵 // guì // ① expensive ② noble ③ precious ④ (honorific) your // CC-CEDICT
難得 // 难得 // nán dé // ① précieux ② rare ③ peu fréquent // Chinese-French
難得 // 难得 // nán dé // ① seldom ② rare ③ hard to come by // 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
貨 // 货 // huò // ① marchandise // Chinese-French
貨 // 货 // huò // ① goods ② money ③ commodity ④ CL:個|个[ge4] // CC-CEDICT
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① envoyé ② utiliser ③ employer ④ faire faire ⑤ envoyer // Chinese-French
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① to make ② to cause ③ to enable ④ to use ⑤ to employ ⑥ to send ⑦ to instruct sb to do sth ⑧ envoy ⑨ messenger // CC-CEDICT
民 // 民 // mín // ① peuple ② gens du commun // Chinese-French
民 // 民 // mín // ① surname Min // CC-CEDICT
民 // 民 // mín // ① the people ② nationality ③ citizen // 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
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
盜 // 盗 // dào // ① voleur ② bandit ③ voler ④ dérober // Chinese-French
盜 // 盗 // dào // ① to steal ② to rob ③ to plunder ④ thief ⑤ bandit ⑥ robber // CC-CEDICT
不見 // 不见 // bù jiàn // ① disparaître // Chinese-French
不見 // 不见 // bù jiàn // ① not to see ② not to meet ③ to have disappeared ④ to be missing // CC-CEDICT
可 // 可 // kě // ① pouvoir ② permettre ③ approuver ④ mais ⑤ cependant // Chinese-French
可 // 可 // kě // ① can ② may ③ able to ④ to approve ⑤ to permit ⑥ to suit ⑦ (particle used for emphasis) certainly ⑧ very // CC-CEDICT
可 // 可 // kè // ① see 可汗[ke4 han2] // CC-CEDICT
欲 // 欲 // yù // ① envie ② désir ③ désirer ④ vouloir // Chinese-French
欲 // 欲 // yù // ① to wish for ② to desire ③ variant of 慾|欲[yu4] // CC-CEDICT
慾 // 欲 // yù // ① desire ② appetite ③ passion ④ lust ⑤ greed // CC-CEDICT
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① envoyé ② utiliser ③ employer ④ faire faire ⑤ envoyer // Chinese-French
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① to make ② to cause ③ to enable ④ to use ⑤ to employ ⑥ to send ⑦ to instruct sb to do sth ⑧ envoy ⑨ messenger // CC-CEDICT
心 // 心 // xīn // ① coeur ② pensée ③ esprit ④ intention // Chinese-French
心 // 心 // xīn // ① heart ② mind ③ intention ④ center ⑤ core ⑥ CL:顆|颗[ke1],個|个[ge4] // 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
亂 // 乱 // luàn // ① désordre, confusion ② anarchie, rébellion // Chinese-French
亂 // 乱 // luàn // ① in confusion or disorder ② in a confused state of mind ③ disorder ④ upheaval ⑤ riot ⑥ illicit sexual relations ⑦ to throw into disorder ⑧ to mix up ⑨ indiscriminate ⑩ random ⑪ arbitrary // CC-CEDICT
是以 // 是以 // shì yǐ // ① par conséquent ② donc // Chinese-French
是以 // 是以 // shì yǐ // ① therefore ② thus ③ so // 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
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
治 // 治 // zhì // ① gouverner ② administrer ③ guérir ④ soigner ⑤ aménager ⑥ paix // Chinese-French
治 // 治 // zhì // ① to rule ② to govern ③ to manage ④ to control ⑤ to harness (a river) ⑥ to treat (a disease) ⑦ to wipe out (a pest) ⑧ to punish ⑨ to research // 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
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
心 // 心 // xīn // ① coeur ② pensée ③ esprit ④ intention // Chinese-French
心 // 心 // xīn // ① heart ② mind ③ intention ④ center ⑤ core ⑥ CL:顆|颗[ke1],個|个[ge4] // CC-CEDICT
實 // 实 // shí // ① réalité ② fait ③ fruit ④ plein ⑤ vrai ⑥ réel // Chinese-French
實 // 实 // shí // ① real ② true ③ honest ④ really ⑤ solid ⑥ fruit ⑦ seed ⑧ definitely // 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
腹 // 腹 // fù // ① ventre // Chinese-French
腹 // 腹 // fù // ① abdomen ② stomach ③ belly // CC-CEDICT
弱 // 弱 // ruò // ① faible ② fragile ③ inférieur ④ un peu moins // Chinese-French
弱 // 弱 // ruò // ① weak ② feeble ③ young ④ inferior ⑤ (following a decimal or fraction) slightly less than // 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
志 // 志 // zhì // ① aspiration ② ambition ③ the will // CC-CEDICT
誌 // 志 // zhì // ① ambition ② idéal ③ annales // Chinese-French
誌 // 志 // zhì // ① sign ② mark ③ to record ④ to write a footnote // CC-CEDICT
強 // 强 // qiáng // ① fort ② puissant ③ de force // Chinese-French
強 // 强 // qiáng // ① surname Qiang // CC-CEDICT
強 // 强 // qiáng // ① strong ② powerful ③ better ④ slightly more than ⑤ vigorous ⑥ violent ⑦ best in their category, e.g. see 百強|百强[bai3 qiang2] // CC-CEDICT
強 // 强 // qiǎng // ① faire un effort ② forcer // Chinese-French
強 // 强 // qiǎng // ① to force ② to compel ③ to strive ④ to make an effort // CC-CEDICT
強 // 强 // jiàng // ① obstiné ② têtu ③ inflexible // Chinese-French
強 // 强 // jiàng // ① stubborn ② unyielding // 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
骨 // 骨 // gǔ // ① os ② ossature ③ charpente // Chinese-French
骨 // 骨 // gǔ // ① bone // 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
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① envoyé ② utiliser ③ employer ④ faire faire ⑤ envoyer // Chinese-French
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① to make ② to cause ③ to enable ④ to use ⑤ to employ ⑥ to send ⑦ to instruct sb to do sth ⑧ envoy ⑨ messenger // CC-CEDICT
民 // 民 // mín // ① peuple ② gens du commun // Chinese-French
民 // 民 // mín // ① surname Min // CC-CEDICT
民 // 民 // mín // ① the people ② nationality ③ citizen // CC-CEDICT
無知 // 无知 // wú zhī // ① ignorant // Chinese-French
無知 // 无知 // wú zhī // ① ignorant ② ignorance // CC-CEDICT
無 // 无 // wú // ① non ② 71e radical // Chinese-French
無 // 无 // wú // ① not to have ② no ③ none ④ not ⑤ to lack ⑥ un- ⑦ -less // CC-CEDICT
欲 // 欲 // yù // ① envie ② désir ③ désirer ④ vouloir // Chinese-French
欲 // 欲 // yù // ① to wish for ② to desire ③ variant of 慾|欲[yu4] // CC-CEDICT
慾 // 欲 // yù // ① desire ② appetite ③ passion ④ lust ⑤ greed // CC-CEDICT
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① envoyé ② utiliser ③ employer ④ faire faire ⑤ envoyer // Chinese-French
使 // 使 // shǐ // ① to make ② to cause ③ to enable ④ to use ⑤ to employ ⑥ to send ⑦ to instruct sb to do sth ⑧ envoy ⑨ messenger // 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
知 // 知 // zhī // ① savoir ② connaître ③ connaissances // Chinese-French
知 // 知 // zhī // ① to know ② to be aware // CC-CEDICT
者 // 者 // zhě // ① (placé après un adjectif ou un verbe est utilisé comme substantif pour désigner une personne ou une chose) // Chinese-French
者 // 者 // zhě // ① (after a verb or adjective) one who (is) ... ② (after a noun) person involved in ... ③ -er ④ -ist ⑤ (used after a number or 後|后[hou4] or 前[qian2] to refer to sth mentioned previously) ⑥ (used after a term, to mark a pause before defining the term) ⑦ (old) (used at the end of a command) ⑧ (old) this // CC-CEDICT
不敢 // 不敢 // bù gǎn // ① ne pas oser // 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
也 // 也 // yě // ① également ② aussi ③ à la fois ④ même ⑤ voire // Chinese-French
也 // 也 // yě // ① surname Ye // CC-CEDICT
也 // 也 // yě // ① also ② too ③ (in Classical Chinese) final particle implying affirmation // 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
無為 // 无为 // wú wéi // ① Wuwei county in Chaohu 巢湖[Chao2 hu2], Anhui // CC-CEDICT
無為 // 无为 // wú wéi // ① the Daoist doctrine of inaction ② let things take their own course ③ laissez-faire // 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
無不 // 无不 // wú bù // ① none lacking ② none missing ③ everything is there ④ everyone without exception // CC-CEDICT
治 // 治 // zhì // ① gouverner ② administrer ③ guérir ④ soigner ⑤ aménager ⑥ paix // Chinese-French
治 // 治 // zhì // ① to rule ② to govern ③ to manage ④ to control ⑤ to harness (a river) ⑥ to treat (a disease) ⑦ to wipe out (a pest) ⑧ to punish ⑨ to research // CC-CEDICT
(Ⅵ)
- Yi Wu (1989) :

Worship no sage,
And people will not struggle for vanity.
Treasure no rare goods,
And people will not steal them.
Dangle no tantalizer,
And people will not be confused in mind and will.
Therefore,
The wise politics fills the stomach rather than the mind,
Strengthens the bones and muscles rather than the will,
And enables people to be rather than to desire to be.
Indeed, it is through doing nothing misleading
That the greatest political success can be achieved.
(Ⅶ)
- Lynn (2004) :

Do not exalt the worthy [xian], and so keep the common folk from contention.
Do not value goods hard to get, and so stop the common folk from becoming thieves.
Do not let them see desirable things, and so spare the hearts/minds of the common folk from disorder.
Therefore the way the sage governs is to keep their hearts/minds empty and their bellies full.
He keeps their wills weak and their bones strong.
He always keeps the common folk free from the capacity for knowing and from feeling desire.
And prevents the knowledgeable from ever daring to act.
Because he acts without conscious effort, nothing remains ungoverned.
(Ⅷ)


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