Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Chapter 7, Part 1B - Lieh Tzu

Kuan Yin spoke to the Master Lieh Tzu, saying: 'If speech is sweet, the echo will be sweet; if speech is harsh, the echo will be harsh. If the body is long, the shadow will be long; if the body is short, the shadow will be short. Reputation is like an echo, personal experiences like a shadow.

Hence the saying: "Heed your words, and they will meet with harmonious response; heed your actions, and they will find agreeable accord." Therefore, the Sage observes the origin in order to know the issue, scrutinizes the past in order to know the future. Such is the principle whereby he attains foreknowledge.

'The standard of conduct lies with one's own self; the testing of it lies with other men. We are impelled to love those who love us, and to hate those who hate us. T'ang and Wu loved the Empire, and therefore each became King. Chieh and Chou hated the Empire, and therefore they perished. Here we have the test applied. He who does not follow Tao when standard and test are both clear may be likened to one who, when leaving a house, does not go by the door, Or, when traveling abroad, does not keep to the straight road. To seek profit in this way is surely impossible.

'You may consider the virtues of Shen Nung and Yu. Yen, you may examine the books of Yü, Hsia, Shang and Chou, you may weigh the utterances of great teachers and sages, but you will find no instance of preservation or destruction, fullness or decay, which has not obeyed this supreme Law.'
~ Lionel Giles translation via Terebess Asia Online ~
Go here to read the introductory post to the chapters of the Book of Lieh Tzu.

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