Tao Te Ching – Verse 28 – Know the male, yet keep to the female

28
Know the male,
yet keep to the female:
receive the world in your arms.
If you receive the world,
the Tao will never leave you
and you will be like a little child.

 

Know the white,
yet keep to the black:
be a pattern for the world.
If you are a pattern for the world,
the Tao will be strong inside you
and there will be nothing you can’t do.

Know the personal,
yet keep to the impersonal:
accept the world as it is.
If you accept the world,
the Tao will be luminous inside you
and you will return to your primal self.

The world is formed from the void,
like utensils from a block of wood.
The Master knows the utensils,
yet keeps to the the block:
thus she can use all things.

(translation by Stephen Mitchell, 1995)
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Know the masculine, hold to the feminine
Be the watercourse of the world
Being the watercourse of the world
The eternal virtue does not depart
Return to the state of the infant
Know the white, hold to the black
Be the standard of the world
Being the standard of the world
The eternal virtue does not deviate
Return to the state of the boundless
Know the honor, hold to the humility
Be the valley of the world
Being the valley of the world
The eternal virtue shall be sufficient
Return to the state of plain wood
Plain wood splits, then becomes tools
The sages utilize them
And then become leaders
Thus the greater whole is undivided

(translation by Derek Lin, 2006)
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Zero is not divided.
Those dreaming of division:
Create male and female;
Good and bad;
White and Black;
And all sorts of confusions.
Through the self-inflicted test,
Can they find the wholeness of Nothingness?

(translation by Jeremy M. Miller, 2013)
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from I Ching Online

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