Therefore the sage sees difficulty even in what seems easy, and so never has any difficulties.In an odd sort of way, these lines describe how I prepare for the future. As an autistic bloke who doesn't deal well with surprises, when considering possible outcomes to almost anything, I run through ever possible result I can think of. Put another, I always prepare myself for the worst!
~ James Legge translation, from The Sacred Books of the East, 1891 ~
Because the sage always confronts difficulties,
He never experiences them.
~ Gia-fu Feng and Jane English translation, published by Vintage Books, 1989 ~
Therefore, sages regard things as difficult
So they never encounter difficulties all through life
~ Derek Lin translation, from Tao Te Ching: Annotated & Explained, published by SkyLight Paths, 2006 ~
The Masters are always aware of the difficulties involved,
which is why they never have to deal with them.
~ Ron Hogan rendition, from Beatrice.com, 2004 ~
It is by experiencing the emotions of negative outcomes beforehand that I am better able to deal with them IF they come to pass. Needless to say, if those outcomes aren't as negative as I anticipated they might be, then I have stressed out myself over nothing!!
Consequently, I am certainly NOT suggesting that my method is what the passage here refers to...but it's in the ballpark. Sort of. ;-)
To view the Index page for this series to see what you may have missed or would like to read again, go here.