5

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duced by his or her own wrong desires. 

The Final Admonition
Don't say virtue isn't possible these days.  Can what was possible in the past not be possible now? It is only because teaching is not complete and practice is not powerful.  Some say the ancients were pure and simple and therefore could be taught, while people of today are fickle and shallow, and therefore cannot be taught.  These are words that foster delusion - truly they are not worthy of consideration. 

Listen for advice, but be careful of your sources.  Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, whoever mixes with fools will be ruined.  Do not follow the minds of your own generation only: There is no conflict between the old and the new; the conflict is between the true and the false.  Ask widely among the prudent people of the older generation, in order to broaden your knowledge and amend your shortcomings, to shed light on what has not yet dawned on you.  Avoid those who change their devotion because of destitution or success, gain or loss; they are simply not yet worthy of talking to about the Way.

Accept reproof and grow in understanding; accepting correction is proof of self-respect, for while the fool thinks the way he goes is straight, the wise is listening to advice.  The mocker does not care to be reprimanded, and will not choose the wise as companions. 

Do not follow the way of Anger.  Anger is a wind that blows out the lamp of the mind.  Sharp words stir up anger, but a mild answer turns away wrath.  Mastery of temper is high proof of intelligence, but a quick

temper makes folly worse than ever. 

Do not follow the way of Hatred.  Hatred is darkness, and those who hate are in darkness walking about blindly, not knowing where they are going.  Those who love remain in the light and there is nothing in them to make them fall away, but whoever claims to be in the light but still hates is really in darkness. 

Follow those that show love toward others.  Love is always patient and kind; love is never jealous; love is not boastful, conceited, or rude; love never seeks its own advantage, and it does not take offense or keep track of grievances.  Love does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but finds its joy in the truth.  It is always ready to make allowances, to trust, to hope and to endure whatever comes.  In love, there is no room for fear, because fear implies punishment and whoever is afraid has not come to perfection