The men of old dwelt in the midst of crudity and chaos; side by side with the rest of the world, they attained simplicity and silence there. At that time the yin and yang were harmonious and still, ghosts and spirits worked no mischief, the four seasons kept to their proper order, the ten thousand things knew no injury, and living creatures were free from premature death. Although men had knowledge, they did not use it. This was called the Perfect Unity. At this time, no one made a move to do anything, and there was unvarying spontaneity.It's not just "the men of old!" As Scott often opines, life is messy. It is filled with "crudity and chaos." It is amidst this cacophony of sharps and flats that we must live. But through the din of noise, we can find silence through practiced meditation or deep contemplation.
~ Burton Watson translation ~
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