Chapter 75 How to diminish craving.
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(Version and commentary of He Shanggong in English)


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(⁎)
(Ⅱ)
(Ⅲ)
(Ⅳ)
(Ⅴ)
(Ⅵ)
(Ⅶ)
(Ⅷ)


75. 1  
The hunger of the people comes from their prince’s consuming the bulk of the revenues.

That the people are hungry and cold has its reason in their prince’s raising too many taxes from his subjects.

Therefore they are hungry.

The people are altered by their prince and thereby become greedy. They rebel against Tao and are opposed to Te. Therefore they are hungry.

The people’s being difficult to govern comes from their prince’s fussing about.

That the people cannot be governed has its reason in their prince’s having many wishes and wanting to fuss about.

Therefore they are difficult to govern.

The people are altered by their prince and fuss about. Their character becomes hypocritical, and they are difficult to govern.

That men take death easy comes from their seeking for the fulness of life.

That the people easily risk their lives is because their way of seeking for life is too much bent on gain. Thereby they endanger themselves.

Therefore they take death easy.

Because they seek for the great fulness of life, they take it easy to get themselves on death-bringing ground.

Now he who lays stress on life is worthier that he who values life.

If one now thinks life alone not the most important thing, if dignities and emoluments are not occupying the mind, if wealth and profit do not enter the thoughts, if the emperor does not get you for his minister and the prince does not get you for his official, this is wiser than valuing life.

- Chinese :

《道德經》: 民之飢,以其上食稅之多,是以飢。民之難治,以其上之有為,是以難治。民之輕死,以其求生之厚,是以輕死。夫唯無以生為者,是賢於貴生。

《老子河上公章句·貪損》: 民之饑,以其上食稅之多,是以飢。民之難治,以其上之有為,是以難治。民之輕死,以其上求生之厚,是以輕死。夫為無以生為者,是賢於貴生。

《馬王堆·老子甲德經》: 人之飢也,以其取食稅之多也,是以飢。百姓之不治也,以其上有以為□,是以不治。民之巠死,以其求生之厚也,是以巠死。夫唯無以生為者,是賢貴生。

《馬王堆·老子乙德經》: 人之飢也,以其取食稅之多,是以飢。百生之不治也,以其上之有以為也,□以不治。民之輕死也,以其求生之厚也,是以輕死。夫唯無以生為者,是賢貴生。
(⁎)
- He Shanggong (Chinese) :

民之饑,以其上食稅之多,是以飢。人民所以饑寒者,以其君上稅食下太多,民皆化上為貪,叛道違德,故饑。民之難治,以其上之有為,是以難治。民之不可治者,以其君上多欲,好有為也。是以其民化上有為,情偽難治。民之輕死,以其上求生之厚,人民所以侵犯死者,以其求生活之道太厚,貪利以自危。是以輕死。以求生太厚之故,輕入死地也。夫為無以生為者,是賢於貴生。夫唯獨無以生為務者,爵祿不干於意,財利不入於身,天子不得臣,諸侯不得使,則賢於貴生也。
(Ⅱ)
- Wing-Tsit Chan (1963) :

The people starve because the ruler eats too much tax-grain. Therefore they starve.
They are difficult to rule because their ruler does too many things. Therefore they are difficult to rule.
The people take death lightly because their ruler strives for life too vigorously. Therefore they take death lightly. It is only those who do not seek after life that excel in making life valuable.
(Ⅲ)
- Ellen Marie Chen (1989) :

People are hungry.
Because their rulers levy too much grain tax,
Therefore they are hungry.
People are hard to rule.
Because their rulers rule by action (wei),
Therefore they are hard to rule.
People take death lightly.
Because they are in thick pursuit of life,
Therefore they take death lightly.
One who has nothing to pursue in life,
Is wiser than one who values life.
(Ⅳ)
- Ch'u Ta-Kao (1904) :

The people starve. Because their officials take heavy taxes from them, therefore they starve. The people are hard to rule. Because their officials meddle with affairs, therefore they are hard to rule. The people pay no heed to death. Because they endevour to seek life; therefore they pay no heed to death.
(Ⅴ)
- World by world translation :

Traditional // simplified // pinyin // definition // dictionary
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
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
飢 // 饥 // jī // ① hungry // 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
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
上 // 上 // shàng // ① monter ② grimper ③ partir pour ④ mettre ⑤ fixer ⑥ appliquer (un remède) ⑦ supérieur ⑧ haut ⑨ premier ⑩ précédent // Chinese-French
上 // 上 // shàng // ① on top ② upon ③ above ④ upper ⑤ previous ⑥ first (of multiple parts) ⑦ to climb ⑧ to get onto ⑨ to go up ⑩ to attend (class or university) // CC-CEDICT
上 // 上 // shǎng // ① see 上聲|上声[shang3 sheng1] // CC-CEDICT
食 // 食 // shí // ① manger ② nourriture ③ aliments pour animaux ④ éclipse // Chinese-French
食 // 食 // shí // ① to eat ② food ③ animal feed ④ eclipse // CC-CEDICT
食 // 食 // sì // ① nourrir // Chinese-French
食 // 食 // sì // ① to feed // CC-CEDICT
稅 // 税 // shuì // ① impôt ② taxe // Chinese-French
稅 // 税 // shuì // ① taxes ② duties // 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
多 // 多 // duō // ① beaucoup ② nombreux ③ de plus ④ de trop ⑤ plus de // Chinese-French
多 // 多 // duō // "① many ② much ③ often ④ a lot of ⑤ numerous ⑥ more ⑦ in excess ⑧ how (to what extent) ⑨ multi- ⑩ Taiwan pr. [duo2] when it means ""how""" // 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
飢 // 饥 // jī // ① hungry // 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
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
難 // 难 // nán // ① difficile ② ennuyeux ③ fatigant // Chinese-French
難 // 难 // nán // ① difficult (to...) ② problem ③ difficulty ④ difficult ⑤ not good // CC-CEDICT
難 // 难 // nàn // ① désastre ② détresse ③ clamité ④ infortune ⑤ malheur // Chinese-French
難 // 难 // nàn // ① disaster ② distress ③ to scold // 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
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
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
上 // 上 // shàng // ① monter ② grimper ③ partir pour ④ mettre ⑤ fixer ⑥ appliquer (un remède) ⑦ supérieur ⑧ haut ⑨ premier ⑩ précédent // Chinese-French
上 // 上 // shàng // ① on top ② upon ③ above ④ upper ⑤ previous ⑥ first (of multiple parts) ⑦ to climb ⑧ to get onto ⑨ to go up ⑩ to attend (class or university) // CC-CEDICT
上 // 上 // shǎng // ① see 上聲|上声[shang3 sheng1] // 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
有為 // 有为 // yǒu wéi // ① plein de promesses ② prometteur // Chinese-French
有為 // 有为 // yǒu wéi // ① promising ② to show promise // 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
難 // 难 // nán // ① difficile ② ennuyeux ③ fatigant // Chinese-French
難 // 难 // nán // ① difficult (to...) ② problem ③ difficulty ④ difficult ⑤ not good // CC-CEDICT
難 // 难 // nàn // ① désastre ② détresse ③ clamité ④ infortune ⑤ malheur // Chinese-French
難 // 难 // nàn // ① disaster ② distress ③ to scold // 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
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
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
輕 // 轻 // qīng // ① léger ② jeune ③ peu important ④ doucement ⑤ à la légère ⑥ mépriser // Chinese-French
輕 // 轻 // qīng // ① light ② easy ③ gentle ④ soft ⑤ reckless ⑥ unimportant ⑦ frivolous ⑧ small in number ⑨ unstressed ⑩ neutral ⑪ to disparage // CC-CEDICT
死 // 死 // sǐ // ① mourir ② à mort ③ extrêmement ④ mort ⑤ rigide // Chinese-French
死 // 死 // sǐ // ① to die ② impassable ③ uncrossable ④ inflexible ⑤ rigid ⑥ extremely ⑦ damned // 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
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
求生 // 求生 // qiú shēng // ① avoir la volonté de vivre // Chinese-French
求生 // 求生 // qiú shēng // ① to seek survival ② to possess the will to live // 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
厚 // 厚 // hòu // ① épais ② important ③ cordial ④ fort // Chinese-French
厚 // 厚 // hòu // ① thick ② deep or profound ③ kind ④ generous ⑤ rich or strong in flavor ⑥ to favor ⑦ to stress // 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
輕 // 轻 // qīng // ① léger ② jeune ③ peu important ④ doucement ⑤ à la légère ⑥ mépriser // Chinese-French
輕 // 轻 // qīng // ① light ② easy ③ gentle ④ soft ⑤ reckless ⑥ unimportant ⑦ frivolous ⑧ small in number ⑨ unstressed ⑩ neutral ⑪ to disparage // CC-CEDICT
死 // 死 // sǐ // ① mourir ② à mort ③ extrêmement ④ mort ⑤ rigide // Chinese-French
死 // 死 // sǐ // ① to die ② impassable ③ uncrossable ④ inflexible ⑤ rigid ⑥ extremely ⑦ damned // 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
唯 // 唯 // wéi // ① seulement // Chinese-French
唯 // 唯 // wéi // ① -ism ② only ③ alone // CC-CEDICT
唯 // 唯 // wěi // ① consentir // Chinese-French
唯 // 唯 // wěi // ① yes // 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
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
生 // 生 // shēng // ① vie ② existence ③ élève ④ cru ⑤ inconnu ⑥ étranger ⑦ accoucher ⑧ naître ⑨ pousser ⑩ vivre // Chinese-French
生 // 生 // shēng // ① to be born ② to give birth ③ life ④ to grow ⑤ raw ⑥ uncooked ⑦ student // 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
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
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
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
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
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
生 // 生 // shēng // ① vie ② existence ③ élève ④ cru ⑤ inconnu ⑥ étranger ⑦ accoucher ⑧ naître ⑨ pousser ⑩ vivre // Chinese-French
生 // 生 // shēng // ① to be born ② to give birth ③ life ④ to grow ⑤ raw ⑥ uncooked ⑦ student // CC-CEDICT
(Ⅵ)
- Yi Wu (1989) :

People are hungry because "the Above" tax too much.
People are disobedient because "the Above" do too much.
People would rather die because "the Above" live too high.
Therefore, one who does nothing to benefit one's own life
Is good at keeping and supporting lives.
(Ⅶ)
- Lynn (2004) :

The reason the common folk starve is that the ruler eats too much grain tax.
This is why they starve.
The reason the common folk are hard to govern is that the ruler takes deliberate actions [you-wei].
This is why they are hard to govern.
The reason the common folk take death lightly is that they place too much emphasis on life.
This is why they take death lightly.
It is only by acting without regard for life that one becomes more of a worthy than one who values life.
(Ⅷ)


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