THE WISDOM OF CONTENTMENT
YANG CHU said:
"How can a body possessing the four things, a comfortable house, fine clothes, good food, and pretty women, still long for anything else? He who does so has an insatiable nature, and insatiableness is a worm that eats body and mind.
"Loyalty cannot set the sovereign at ease, but perhaps may imperil one's body. Righteousness cannot help the world, but perhaps may do harm to one's life. The sovereign's peace not being brought about by loyalty, the fame of the loyal dwindles to nothing, and the world deriving no profit from righteousness, the fame of the righteous amounts to naught.
"How the sovereign and subjects can alike be set at ease, and how the world and I can simultaneously be helped, is set forth in the dictum of the ancients."
Yu Tse said:
"He who renounces fame has no sorrow."
Lao Tse said:
"Fame is the follower of reality. Now, however, as people pursue fame with such frenzy — does it not really come of itself if it is disregarded? At present fame means honor and regard. Lack of fame brings humbleness and disgrace. Again, ease and pleasure follow upon honor and regard. Sorrow and grief attend humbleness and disgrace. Sorrow and grief are contrary to human nature; ease and pleasure are in accord with it. These things have reality."
Translator of Yang Zhu's Garden of Pleasure is Anton Forke. If you missed any posts in this series, please utilize the Yang Zhu label below.