oon afterward Tzu-yu fell ill and Tzu-ssu went to see him. "Great is the Creator!" said the sick man. "See how he (or it) has made me crumbled up like this!" (1) His back was hunched and his backbone was protruding. His internal organs were on the top of his body. His cheeks were level with his navel. His shoulders were higher than his head. The hair on top of his head pointed up toward the sky. The yin and yang (passive and active cosmic forces) in him were out of order, but his mind was at ease as though nothing had happened. He limped and walked quickly to the well and looked at his reflection, and said, "Alas! The Creator has made crumbled up like this!" "Do you dislike it?" asked Tzu-ssu. "No," said Tzu-yu, "why should I dislike it? Suppose my left arm is transformed into a cock. With it I should herald the dawn. Suppose my right arm is transformed into a sling. With it I should look for a dove to roast. Suppose my buttocks were transformed into wheels and my spirit into a horse. I should mount them. What need do I have for a chariot? When we come, it is because it was the occasion to be born. When we go, it is to follow the natural course of things. Those who are contented and at ease when the occasion comes and live in accord with the course of Nature cannot be affected by sorrow or joy. This is what the ancients called release (2) from bondage. Those who cannot release themselves are so because they are bound by material things. That material things cannot overcome Nature, however, has been a fact from time immemorial. Why, then, should I dislike it?"
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