The Gospel of Thomas
 side by side with  The Tao Te Ching

The Way  and  The Tao
 

Scrolling both texts together...
Sequentially similar thoughts, words, and rhetoric are highlighted using similar colors.
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Like a present-day Conversation between Two Cultures
Compare and Contrast. Uncover The Truth and The Way
_____________________________________________

"The Way that can be trodden is not the enduring and unchanging Way.
"How pure...  the Tao is... The Son of One I do not know," Tao 4:2-3.
Discover His Way and Find The One.

"The name that can be named is not
the eternal name,"
The Tao 1:1
"That which is eternal is UNNAMEABLE."

"THE UNKNOWN GOD...  this I proclaim," Acts 17:22-23.
 
Finding the Meaning of the Words of
Jesus and Laozi,
Let us embrace The Truth, and May we walk This Way.



The Gospel of Thomas
or
The Original Gospel of Jesus

Based on the translation by
Mark M. Mattison

www.gospels.net/thomas
The Tao Teh King
or
The Tao and Its Characteristics
by Lao-Tse

Translated by
James Legge

www.gutenberg.org/files/216/216-h/216-h.htm

The Secret Sayings & The Mysterious Way

"Words cannot describe the Way"

The First Side of The Chiasm


Prologue:
The hidden sayings
Introduction:
The enduring and unchanging Tao
These are the hidden sayings that the living Jesus spoke and Didymos Judas Thomas wrote down.

(C.f. The names Didymos & Thomas can mean the Twin & may allude to to the mirror image of the Living... The Mother of us all. See Saying 22 & Galatians 4:26. "By him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth," Colossians 1:16.)
1. 1.  The Tao that can be trodden is not the enduring and unchanging Tao. The name that can be named is not the enduring and unchanging name.

1. 2.  (Conceived of as) having no name, it is the Originator of heaven and earth; (conceived of as) having a name, it is the Mother of all things.

(C.f.  Written Sayings or "Words cannot describe the Tao" or the Way, Tao 1:1 by David Bullen.)



Saying 1:
The Secret Meaning of the Teachings
The Tao and its Deep Mystery
And he said, "Whoever discovers the meaning of these sayings won't taste death."

(C.f. Death: Jesus spoke of "the outer darkness," Matthew 8:12.
See the inner meaning of "the dark sayings," Prov 1:6.)
1. 3.
 Always without desire we must be found,
 
If its deep mystery we would sound;
 But if desire always within us be,
 Its outer fringe
is all that we shall see.


Saying 2:
When
 
they will be amazed
they will
 
reign over the All
As the development takes place
they will know the Mystery
Jesus said, "Whoever seeks shouldn't stop until they find.

When
they find, they'll be disturbed.

When
they're disturbed, then they'll be amazed, and reign over the All."

(C.f. Seek and find: Saying 92, 94)
1. 4.  Under these two aspects, it is really the same;
but as development takes place, it receives the different names.
Together we call them the Mystery. Where the Mystery is the deepest is the gate of all that is subtle and wonderful.

2. 1.   All in the world know the beauty of the beautiful,
and in doing this they have (the idea of) what ugliness is;
they all know the skill of the skilful,
and in doing this they have (the idea of) what the want of skill is.


Saying 3:
Within
The Kingdom you will realize. You will know
With The King (or The Sage)
the work is accomplished
,

but
how no one can see
Jesus said, "If your leaders tell you, 'Look, the kingdom is in heaven,' then the birds of heaven will precede you. If they tell you, 'It's in the sea,' then the fish will precede you. Rather, the kingdom is within you and outside of you.

"When you know yourselves, then you'll be known, and you'll realize that you're the children of the living Father. But if you don't know yourselves, then you live in poverty, and you are the poverty."
2. 2.  So it is that existence and non-existence give birth
the one to
(the idea of) the other;
that difficulty and ease produce the one (the idea of) the other;
that length and shortness fashion out
the one the figure of the other
;
that (the ideas of) height and lowness arise from
the contrast of the one with the other
;
that the musical notes and tones become harmonious through
the relation of one with another
;
and that being before and behind give the idea of one following another.

2. 3.  Therefore the sage manages affairs without doing anything,
and conveys his instructions without the use of speech.

2. 4.   All things spring up,
and there is not one which declines to show itself;
they grow, and there is no claim made for their ownership;
they go through their processes,
and there is no expectation (of a reward for the results).
The work is accomplished,
and there is no resting in it (as an achievement).
 The work is done, but how no one can see;  
 'Tis this that makes the power not cease to be.


Saying 4:
In 
the place of life
both
the older person &
a little seven-day-old child... they will live
Within the way men of superior ability,
the sage
& the people are kept
Jesus said, "The older person won't hesitate to ask a little seven-day-old child about the place of life, and they'll live, because many who are first will be last, and they'll become one and the same."

(C.f.
Jesus & Laozi together: The old man & The seven-day-old child united, Saying 37, 28:1.)
3. 1.  Not to value and employ men of superior ability
is the way to keep the people from rivalry among themselves;
not to prize articles which are difficult to procure
is the way to keep them from becoming thieves;
not to show them what is likely to excite their desires
is the way to keep their minds from disorder.

3.
2.  Therefore the sage, in the exercise of his government,
empties
their minds, fills their bellies,
weakens
their wills, and strengthens their bones.


Saying 5:
The Kingdom is
  Hidden & Revealed
Without Knowledge &
Having Knowledge
of
Good Order
Jesus said, "Know what's in front of your face, and what's hidden from you will be revealed to you, because there's nothing hidden that won't be revealed." 3. 3.  He constantly (tries to) keep them without knowledge and without desire, and where there are those who have knowledge, to keep them from presuming to act (on it).  When there is this abstinence from action, good order is universal.


Saying 6:  
The Public
but Corrupted Ritual
The Secret but Pure Way of the Son
His disciples said to him, "Do you want us to fast? And how should we pray? Should we make donations? And what food should we avoid?"

Jesus said, "Don't lie, and don't do what you hate, because everything is revealed in the sight of heaven; for there's nothing hidden that won't be revealed, and nothing covered up that will stay secret."

(C.f. Whose Son gave birth to this Secret Way [or Tao]  which appears to have existed even before "their God"? Consider Thomas 53 & The Tao 4:3. Nothing covered up will stay secret.)
4. 1.  The Tao is (like) the emptiness of a vessel;
and in our employment of it
we must be on our guard against all fulness
.
How deep and unfathomable it is,
as if it were the Honoured Ancestor of all things!

4.
2.  We should blunt our sharp points,
and unravel the complications of things;
we should attemper our brightness,
and bring ourselves into agreement with the obscurity of others.
How pure and still the Tao is,
as if it would ever so continue!

4.
3.  I do not know whose son it is.
It might appear to have been before God.

(C.f. The Son:
"I do not know whose son it is," Tao 4:3.  "Who... established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is his son's name, if thou canst tell? Proverbs 30:4, Psalm 2:12. Salome said to Jesus, "Who are you, man, whose son?" Saying 61 Blatz. )
 


Saying 7:
Transforming the Beast Nature
Guarding your Inner Being
Jesus said, "Blessed is the lion that's eaten by a human and then becomes human, but how awful for the human who's eaten by a lion, and the lion becomes human."

(C.f. "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. But if ye bite and devour one another, [if your mouths are filled with hot air] take heed that ye be not consumed one of another," Galatians 5:15.)
5. 1.  Heaven and earth do not act from
(the impulse of) any wish to be benevolent;
they deal with all things as the dogs of grass are dealt with.
The sages do not act from (any wish to be) benevolent;
they deal with the people as the dogs of grass are dealt with.

5.
2.  May not the space between heaven and earth be compared to a bellows?
 'Tis emptied, yet it loses not its power;  
 Tis moved again, and sends forth air the more.

 Much speech to swift exhaustion lead we see;  
 Your inner being guard, and keep it free.


Saying 8:
The Wise Fisher
Easily Chooses

The Large fish
The Sage is Able to Realise Such ends.
He has no personal and private ends
.
He said, "The human being is like a wise fisher who cast a net into the sea and drew it up from the sea full of little fish. Among them the wise fisher found a fine large fish and cast all the little fish back down into the sea, easily choosing the large fish. Anyone who has ears to hear should hear!"


(C.f. The Spirit of the Valley... "It flows continuously... able to... endure," 7:1.)
6.    
 The valley spirit dies not, aye the same;
 The female mystery thus do we name.
 Its gate, from which at first they issued forth,
 Is called the root from which grew heaven and earth.
 Long and unbroken does its power remain,
 Used gently, and without the touch of pain.

7. 1.  Heaven is long-enduring and earth continues long.
The reason why heaven and earth are able to endure and continue
thus long is because they do not live of, or for, themselves.
This is how they are able to continue and endure.

7.
2.  Therefore the sage puts his own person last,
and yet it is found in the foremost place;
he treats his person as if it were foreign to him,
and yet that person is preserved.
Is it not because he has no personal and private ends,
that therefore such ends are realised?


Saying 9:
A Sower went out to sow Seed.
Some fell taking root
in good soil,
producing fruit a hundred and twenty
Walking the way of The Tao.
Benefiting all things the highest excellence
does not wrangle
 about the low position
of the place
Jesus said, "Look, a sower went out, took a handful of seeds, and scattered them. Some fell on the roadside; the birds came and gathered them. Others fell on the rock; they didn't take root in the soil and ears of grain didn't rise toward heaven. Yet others fell on thorns; they choked the seeds and worms ate them. Finally, others fell on good soil; it produced fruit up toward heaven, some sixty times as much and some a hundred and twenty." 8. 1.  The highest excellence is like (that of) water.
The excellence of water appears in its benefiting all things, and in its occupying, without striving (to the contrary), the low place which all men dislike.
Hence (its way) is near to (that of) the Tao.

8.
2.  The excellence of a residence is in (the suitability of) the place; that of the mind is in abysmal stillness;
that of associations is in their being with the virtuous;
that of government is in its securing good order;
that of (the conduct of) affairs is in its ability;
and that of (the initiation of) any movement is in its timeliness.

8. 3.  And when (one with the highest excellence)
does not wrangle
(about his low position),
no one finds fault with him.


Saying 10:
Pouring Fire on the World
Its better not to carry it full
Jesus said, "I've cast fire on the world, and look, I'm watching over it until it blazes." 9. 1.  It is better to leave a vessel unfilled,
than to attempt to carry it when it is full.
If you keep feeling a point that has been sharpened,
the point cannot long preserve its sharpness.


Saying 11:
When you were one
you became divided.
But the Living Won't Die. When you're in the light, what will you do?
When... held together in one embrace,
they can be kept from separating
.
When the work is done... withdraw into obscurity
This is the way of Heaven
Jesus said, "This heaven will disappear, and the one above it will disappear too. Those who are dead aren't alive, and those who are living won't die. In the days when you ate what was dead, you made it alive. When you're in the light, what will you do? On the day when you were one, you became divided. But when you become divided, what will you do?" 9. 2.  When gold and jade fill the hall,  
their possessor cannot keep them safe.
When wealth and honours lead to arrogancy,
this brings its evil on itself.
When the work is done,
and one's name is becoming distinguished,
to withdraw into obscurity is the way of Heaven.

10. 1.  When the intelligent and animal souls
are held together in one embrace
,
they can be kept from separating.
When one gives undivided attention to the (vital) breath,
and brings it to the utmost degree of pliancy,
he can become as a (tender) babe.
When he has cleansed away
the most mysterious sights
(of his imagination),
he can become without a flaw.


Saying 12:
Who Will Direct Us
?
Jesus said to them,
James the Just
Ruling the state... he proceeds.
Presiding over all, yet not controlling them
This is... The mysterious Qualityof the Way
The disciples said to Jesus, "We know you're going to leave us. Who will lead us then?"

Jesus said to them, "Wherever you are, you'll go to James the Just, for whom heaven and earth came into being."
10. 2.  In loving the people and ruling the state,
cannot he proceed without any (purpose of) action?
In the opening and shutting of his gates of heaven,
cannot he do so as a female bird?
While his intelligence reaches in every direction,
cannot he (appear to) be without knowledge?

10. 3.  (The Tao) produces (all things) and nourishes them;
it produces them and does not claim them as its own;
it does all, and yet does not boast of it;
it presides over all, and yet does not control them.
This is what is called 'The mysterious Quality' (of the Tao).


Saying 13:
Compare me to Someone
Spokes unite in the one on the empty space
Jesus said to his disciples, "If you were to compare me to someone, who would you say I'm like?"
Simon Peter said to him, "You're like a just angel."
Matthew said to him, "You're like a wise philosopher."
Thomas said to him, "Teacher, I'm completely unable to say whom you're like."
     Jesus said, "I'm not your teacher. Because you've drunk, you've become intoxicated by the bubbling spring I've measured out."
He took him aside and told him three things. When Thomas returned to his companions, they asked, "What did Jesus say to you?"
Thomas said to them, "If I tell you one of the things he said to me, you'll pick up stones and cast them at me, and fire will come out of the stones and burn you up."
11.  The thirty spokes unite in the one nave; but it is on the empty space (for the axle), that the use of the wheel depends.
Clay is fashioned into vessels; but it is on their empty hollowness, that their use depends.
The door and windows are cut out (from the walls) to form an apartment; but it is on the empty space (within), that its use depends.
Therefore, what has a (positive) existence serves for profitable adaptation, and what has not that for (actual) usefulness.

12. 1.   Colour's five hues from th' eyes their sight will take;
 Music's five notes the ears as deaf can make;
 The flavours five deprive the mouth of taste;  
 
The chariot course, and the wild hunting waste
 Make mad the mind; and objects rare and strange,  
 Sought for, men's conduct will to evil change.

12. 2. Therefore the sage seeks to satisfy (the craving of) the belly, and not the (insatiable longing of the) eyes.
He puts from him the latter, and prefers to seek the former.

13. 1.  Favour and disgrace would seem equally to be feared; honour and great calamity, to be regarded as personal conditions (of the same kind).


Saying 14:
If they welcome
you
go around in the countryside
& bridle the whole community
Getting that favour
honour (the kingdom) as his own person
& administer the kingdom
Jesus said to them, "If you fast, you'll bring guilt upon yourselves; and if you pray, you'll be condemned; and if you make donations, you'll harm your spirits.

"If they welcome you when you enter any land and go around in the countryside, heal those who are sick among them and eat whatever they give you, because it's not what goes into your mouth that will defile you. What comes out of your mouth is what will defile you."

(C.f. "Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing... If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body [or community]," James 3:10,2.)
13. 2. What is meant by speaking thus of favour and disgrace?
Disgrace is being in a low position (after the enjoyment of favour).
The getting that (favour) leads to the apprehension (of losing it),
and the losing it leads to the fear of (still greater calamity):
—this is what is meant by saying that favour
and disgrace would seem equally to be feared.
And what is meant by saying that honour
and great calamity are to be (similarly) regarded as personal conditions?
What makes me liable to great calamity is my having the body (which I call myself); if I had not the body,
what great calamity could come to me?

13.
3.  Therefore he who would administer the kingdom,
honouring it as he honours his own person, may be employed to govern it, and he who would administer it with the love which he bears to his own person may be entrusted with it.


Saying 15:
When you see
the one
We look at it and obtain The One
Jesus said, "When you see the one who wasn't born of a woman, fall down on your face and worship that person. That One is your Father."

(C.f. 
That One: "Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually," Hebrews 7:3.)
14. 1.  We look at it, and we do not see it,
and we name it 'the Equable.'
We listen to it, and we do not hear it, and we name it 'the Inaudible.'
We try to grasp it, and do not get hold of it,
and we name it 'the Subtle.'
With these three qualities, it cannot be made the subject of description; and hence we blend them together and obtain The One.


(C.f.
"We blend them together and obtain The One," Tao 14:1. "When you make the two into one... then you'll enter the kingdom," Thomas 22.)


Saying 16: 
People think
,

but
They don't know.
I've come
to cast divisions
We are able to know, but We do not see.
It returns. This is called the Form of the Formless
Jesus said, "Maybe people think that I've come to cast peace on the world, and they don't know that I've come to cast divisions on the earth: fire, sword, and war.

Where there are five in a house, there'll be three against two and two against three, father against and son and son against father. They'll stand up and be one."

(C.f. Jesus said, "Behold, I come quickly... I am... the beginning and the end, the first and the last," Revelation 22:12-13, Tao 14:3.
Also "Know [the Tao] as it was of old in the beginning," 14:3. "In the Beginning was the Message, and the Message was with God and the Message was divine," John 1:1.)
14. 2.  Its upper part is not bright,
and its lower part is not obscure.
Ceaseless in its action,
it yet cannot be named,
and then it again returns and becomes nothing.
This is called the Form of the Formless,
and the Semblance of the Invisible;
this is called the Fleeting and Indeterminable.

14.
3.  We meet it and do not see its Front; we follow it, and do not see its Back.
When we can lay hold of the Tao of old to direct the things of the present day, and are able to know it as it was of old in the beginning, this is called (unwinding) the clue of Tao.

(C.f. 
There are the Three qualities of the Tao [in 14:1]. And there will be Three against Two [i.e. the  divisions in Saying 16].  As We Blend them into The One [14:1], they will become One [Saying 16]. )


Saying 17: 
Jesus
will give you what
no human mind has ever thought
The skilful masters
will make an effort to describe what
is
 
beyond men's knowledge
Jesus said, "I'll give you what no eye has ever seen, no ear has ever heard, no hand has ever touched, and no human mind has ever thought."

(C.f. Jesus said, "The angels and the prophets will come to you and give to you those things you (already) have," Saying 88.)
15. 1.  The skilful masters (of the Tao) in old times,
with a subtle and exquisite penetration,
comprehended its mysteries,
and were deep (also) so as to elude men's knowledge.
As they were thus beyond men's knowledge,
I will make an effort to describe of what sort they appeared to be.


Saying 18:
One will stand up in the beginning.
Jesus said,
They'll know the end
,
and won't taste death
 
The condition of rest will gradually arise.
Those who preserve this Way 
can make
the muddy water clear
and secure the condition of rest
The disciples said to Jesus, "Tell us about our end. How will it come?"

Jesus said, "Have you discovered the beginning so that you can look for the end? Because the end will be where the beginning is. Blessed is the one who will stand up in the beginning. They'll know the end, and won't taste death."

(C.f. Jesus said, "Whoever discovers the meaning of these sayings won't taste death," Saying 1.)
15. 2.  Shrinking looked they like those who wade through a stream in winter; irresolute like those who are afraid of all around them; grave like a guest (in awe of his host); evanescent like ice that is melting away; unpretentious like wood that has not been fashioned into anything; vacant like a valley, and dull like muddy water.

15. 3.  Who can (make) the muddy water (clear)?
Let it be still, and it will gradually become clear.
Who can secure the condition of rest?
Let movement go on, and the condition of rest will gradually arise.

15. 4.   They who preserve this method of the Tao
do not wish to be full (of themselves).
It is through their not being full of themselves that they can afford to seem worn and not appear new and complete.


Saying 19:
Listen to my words:

The One
&
the
Trees
that don't change won't taste death
The report of the fulfilment
of
All things is that unchanging Rule
and he who is king-like... to the end of his bodily life,
is exempt from all danger of decay
Jesus said, "Blessed is the one who came into being before coming into being. If you become my disciples and listen to my message, these stones will become your servants; because there are five trees in paradise which don't change in summer or winter, and their leaves don't fall. Whoever knows them won't taste death." 16. 1.  The (state of) vacancy should be brought to the utmost degree,
and that of stillness guarded with unwearying vigour. All things alike go through their processes of activity, and (then) we see them return (to their original state). When things (in the vegetable world) have displayed their luxuriant growth, we see each of them return to its root. This returning to their root is what we call the state of stillness; and that stillness may be called a reporting that they have fulfilled their appointed end.

16. 2.  The report of that fulfilment is the regular, unchanging rule.
To know that unchanging rule is to be intelligent; not to know it leads to wild movements and evil issues. The knowledge of that unchanging rule produces a (grand) capacity and forbearance, and that capacity and forbearance lead to a community (of feeling with all things). From this community of feeling comes a kingliness of character; and he who is king-like goes on to be heaven-like. In that likeness to heaven he possesses the Tao. Possessed of the Tao, he endures long; and to the end of his bodily life, is exempt from all danger of decay.


Saying 20:
Jesus said
,
The kingdom
is like a mustard seed on tilled soil - it makes a plant that grows
Faith (in the Tao) is like the rulers -
Their undertaking was... successful 
in the people
The disciples asked Jesus, "Tell us, what can the kingdom of heaven be compared to?"

He said to them, "It can be compared to a mustard seed. Though it's the smallest of all the seeds, when it falls on tilled soil it makes a plant so large that it shelters the birds of heaven."

(C.f. Jesus said, "Because of your unbelief... If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed... nothing shall be impossible unto you," Matthew 17:20.)
17. 1.  In the highest antiquity, (the people) did not know that there were (their rulers).
In the next age they loved them and praised them.
In the next they feared them; in the next they despised them. Thus it was that when faith (in the Tao) was deficient (in the rulers) a want of faith in them ensued (in the people).

17. 2.  How irresolute did those (earliest rulers) appear, showing (by their reticence) the importance which they set upon their words!
Their work was done and their undertakings were successful, while the people all said,
'We are as we are, of ourselves!'


Saying 21:
The bandit is coming...

Don't let the bandit

break into the house
If we could renounce
there would be no thieves nor robbers
Mary said to Jesus, "Whom are your disciples like?"

He said, "They're like little children living in a field which isn't theirs. When the owners of the field come, they'll say, 'Give our field back to us.' They'll strip naked in front of them to let them have it and give them their field.

"So I say that if the owner of the house realizes the bandit is coming, they'll watch out beforehand and won't let the bandit break into the house of their domain and steal their possessions. You, then, watch out for the world! Prepare to defend yourself so that the bandits don't attack you, because what you're expecting will come. May there be a wise person among you!

"When the fruit ripened, the reaper came quickly, sickle in hand, and harvested it. Anyone who has ears to hear should hear!"
18. 1.  When the Great Tao (Way or Method) ceased to be observed, benevolence and righteousness came into vogue.
(Then) appeared wisdom and shrewdness, and there ensued great hypocrisy.

18. 2.  When harmony no longer prevailed throughout the six kinships, filial sons found their manifestation; when the states and clans fell into disorder, loyal ministers appeared.

19. 1.  If we could renounce our sageness and discard our wisdom, it would be better for the people a hundredfold.
If we could renounce our benevolence and discard our righteousness, the people would again become filial and
kindly. If we could renounce our artful contrivances
and discard our (scheming for) gain, there would be no thieves nor robbers.

19. 2.  Those three methods (of government)  
Thought olden ways in elegance did fail
And made these names their want of worth to veil;
 But simple views, and courses plain and true
 Would selfish ends and many lusts eschew.

20. 1.   When we renounce learning we have no troubles.
 The (ready) 'yes,' and (flattering) 'yea;'—
 Small is the difference they display.
 But mark their issues, good and ill
 What space the gulf between shall fill?

What all men fear is indeed to be feared;
but how wide and without end
is the range of questions
(asking to be discussed)!


Saying 22:
Jesus saw some little children nursing
Make the two into one... a single one (and the same)
I am like an infant... I value the nursing-mother
(I value the Tao, and the Way)
I alone seem to have lost everything
(C.f. Losing Everything - Saying 22:
The Eye, Hand, Foot, & Likeness Saying
:

The Message
of
Renunciation.
Becoming One & the same)
Jesus saw some little children nursing. He said to his disciples, "These nursing children can be compared to those who enter the kingdom."

They said to him, "Then we'll enter the kingdom as little children?"

Jesus said to them, "When you make the two into one, and make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and so make
the male and the female a single one (and the same) so that the male won't be male nor the female female; when you make eyes in the place of an eye, a hand in the place of a hand, a foot in the place of a foot, and an image in the place of an image; then you'll enter the kingdom."

(C.f. The Heavenly Mother, the gathering of the firstborn by the new and living Way, Galatians 4:26, Hebrews 12:22-24.)
20. 2.  The multitude of men look satisfied and pleased; as if enjoying a full banquet, as if mounted on a tower in spring.
I alone seem listless and still, my desires having as yet given no indication of their presence.
I am like an infant which has not yet smiled.
I look dejected and forlorn, as if I had no home to go to.
The multitude of men all have enough and to spare.
I alone seem to have lost everything.
My mind is that of a stupid man; I am in a state of chaos.

Ordinary men look bright and intelligent,
while I alone seem to be benighted.
They look full of discrimination,
while I alone am dull and confused.
I seem to be carried about as on the sea,
drifting as if I had nowhere to rest.
All men have their spheres of action,
while I alone seem dull and incapable,
like a rude borderer.
(Thus) I alone am different from other men,
but I value the nursing-mother (the Tao).

(C.f .  "Born again, not of corruptible seed, but...
by the word of God, which liveth & abideth for ever...
As newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word,
that ye may grow thereby,"  1 Peter 1:23, 2:2.)


Saying 23:
I'll choose you as a single one
The grandest forms of power
proceed only from the Tao
(or the Way)
Chapter 21
(第二十一章)
Jesus said, "I'll choose you, one out of a thousand and two out of ten thousand, and they'll stand as a single one." 21.  
 The grandest forms of active force

 From Tao come, their only source.
 Who can of Tao the nature tell?
 Our sight it flies, our touch as well.
孔 德之容,
唯道是從。
道之為物,
惟恍惟惚。


Saying 24:
He said, Light exists within a person of light, and they light up the whole world
The truth... when seen,
shall then be told
His disciples said, "Show us the place where you are, because we need to look for it."

He said to them, "Anyone who has ears to hear should hear! Light exists within a person of light, and they light up the whole world. If they don't shine, there's darkness."
 Eluding sight, eluding touch,
 The forms of things all in it crouch;
 Eluding touch, eluding sight,
 There are their semblances, all right.
 
 Profound it is, dark and obscure;
 Things' essences all there endure.
 Those essences the truth enfold
 Of what, when seen, shall then be told.
 Now it is so; 'twas so of old.
 Its name—what passes not away;
 So, in their beautiful array,
 Things form and never know decay.


Saying 25:
By love
protect your brother as your own soul
By this (Way)
the partial becomes complete
Jesus said, "Love your brother as your own soul.

Protect
them like the pupil of your eye."
How know I that it is so with all the beauties of existing things?
By this (nature of the Tao).

22. 1.
The partial becomes complete;
the crooked, straight;
the empty,
full;
the worn out, new
.
He whose (desires) are few gets them;
he whose (desires) are many goes astray.


Saying 26:
You get
the beam out
of your own eye
The sage holds (humility) in his embrace. 
He is free from
self-display
Jesus said, "You see the speck that's in your brother's eye, but you don't see the beam in your own eye. When you get the beam out of your own eye, then you'll be able to see clearly to get the speck out of your brother's eye." 22. 2. Therefore the sage holds in his embrace the one thing (of humility), and manifests it to all the world.
He is free from self-display,
and therefore he shines;
from self-assertion, and therefore he is distinguished;
from self-boasting, and therefore his merit is acknowledged;
from self-complacency, and therefore he acquires superiority.
It is because he is thus free from striving
that therefore no one in the world is able to strive with him.


Saying 27:
Fast from the world, and find the kingdom. Make the Sabbath into a Sabbath
Separate yourself and become whole.
Abstain from speech
Jesus said, "If you don't fast from the world, you won't find the kingdom. If you don't make the Sabbath into a Sabbath, you won't see the Father."

(C.f.
"The partial becomes complete" or “Separate yourself and become whole22:3 by David Bullen.)
22. 3.  That saying of the ancients that 'the partial becomes complete' was not vainly spoken:
—all real completion is comprehended under it.

23. 1.  Abstaining from speech marks him who is obeying the spontaneity of his nature.
A violent wind does not last for a whole morning;
a sudden rain does not last for the whole day.
To whom is it that these (two) things are owing?
To Heaven and Earth.
 

(C.f. On six days "God said" and then seemingly
abstained from speech on the seven day, Genesis 1:1,6,9,14,20,24,2:3, or The Seven days of Creation.)


Saying 28:
They're drunk.

They came... empty.
They'll change (their minds).
They fail.  A want... ensues.
They 
agree with him in that.
Jesus said, "I stood in the middle of the world and appeared to them in the flesh. I found them all drunk; I didn't find any of them thirsty. My soul ached for the children of humanity, because they were blind in their hearts and couldn't see. They came into the world empty and plan on leaving the world empty. Meanwhile, they're drunk. When they shake off their wine, then they'll change (their minds or repent)." If Heaven and Earth cannot make such
(spasmodic) actings last long, how much less can man!

23. 2.  Therefore when one is making the Tao his business,
those who are also pursuing it,
agree with him in it,
and those who are making the manifestation
of its course their object agree with him
in that;
while even those who are failing in both these things

agree with him where they fail
.

23. 3.  Hence, those with whom he agrees as to the Tao
have the happiness of attaining to it
;
those with whom he agrees as to its manifestation
have the happiness of attaining to it
;
and those with whom he agrees in their failure
have also the happiness of attaining
(to the Tao).
(But) when there is not faith sufficient (on his part),
a want of faith (in him) ensues (on the part of the others).

24.  He who stands on his tiptoes does not stand firm;
he who stretches his legs does not walk (easily).


Saying 29:
Jesus said, Spirit came into existence because of the body. Such great wealth was placed in this poverty & I'm amazed.
There was something undefined and complete,
coming into existence before Heaven and Earth.
Viewed from the standpoint of the Tao
Such conditions
are not valued.
Jesus said, "If the flesh came into existence because of spirit, that's amazing. If spirit came into existence because of the body, that's really amazing! But I'm amazed at how [such] great wealth has been placed in this poverty."

(C.f.  "There was something... coming into existence," 25.1.   Jesus said, "Blessed is he who came into being before he came into being," Saying 19.)
(So), he who displays himself does not shine;
he who asserts his own views is not distinguished;
he who vaunts himself does not find his merit acknowledged;
he who is self-conceited has no superiority allowed to him.
Such conditions, viewed from the standpoint of the Tao,
are like remnants of food,
or a tumour on the body, which all dislike.
Hence those who pursue (the course) of the Tao
do not adopt and allow them.

25. 1.  There was something undefined and complete,
coming into existence before Heaven and Earth.

(C.f. The Message or The Method of The Way of The Tao:
"In the Beginning was the Message, and the Message was with God and the Message was divine," John 1:1.)


Saying 30:
Where
there is only one
,
I say, I am.
Everywhere it was standing alone.
I call it
The Great. 
I do not know its name.
Jesus said, "Where there are three deities, they are divine. Where there are two or one, I am with them."

An alternate translation: Jesus said, "Where there are two, they are without God, and where there is only one, I say, I am with him," Saying 30 from The Greek fragment.

(C.f. Is it one, two, three, or four? "In the universe there are four that are great," Tao 25:3. And Jesus said, "Where there is only one, I say, I am with him," Saying 30.)
How still it was and formless, standing alone,
and undergoing no change, reaching everywhere and in no danger (of being exhausted)! It may be regarded as the Mother of all things.

25. 2. I do not know its name, and I give it the designation of the Tao (the Way or Course). Making an effort (further) to give it a name I call it The Great.

(C.f. Concerning "the Mother" & the children, Tao 24:1... Jesus said, "Make the two One," Saying 22.  
     Concerning "Making an effort to give it a name
I call it The Great," Tao 24:2... Moses said, "They shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say to them? And God said to Moses, I AM THAT I AM... Thus shall you say to the children... I AM has sent me to you," Exodus 3:13-14.  
     Concerning Standing: "How still it was and formless, standing alone," 25:1... Jesus said, "I stood in the middle of the world and appeared to them," Saying 28.) 


Saying 31:
Welcome
the way of 
Jesus
The Tao, the Earth, Heaven
Jesus said, "No prophet is welcome in their own village. No doctor heals those who know them."

(C.f. Jesus said, "A prophet is not without honour, but in his own country," Mark 6:4.)
25. 3.
Great, it passes on (in constant flow).
Passing on, it becomes remote.
Having become remote, it returns.
Therefore the Tao is great;
Heaven is great; Earth is great;
and the (sage) king is also great.
In the universe there are four that are great,
and the (sage) king is one of them.


Saying 32: 
Jesus
,
a city, & a high  mountain
The Tao, the Earth, Heaven
Jesus said, "A city built and fortified on a high mountain can't fall, nor can it be hidden."

(C.f.  The Way of Jesus and his 
Method simply is and it works.)  
25. 4.
Man takes his law from the Earth;
the Earth takes its law from Heaven;
Heaven takes its law from the Tao.
The law of the Tao is its being what it is.


Saying 33:
Everyone who comes & goes can
listen with both ears.
Light a lamp
, 
put it on the stand
Marching in the light of day... How should the lord... carry himself... with both gravity & lightness, stillness & movement.
Brilliant to look at
, 
in his proper place
Jesus said, "What you hear with one ear, listen to with both, then proclaim from your rooftops. No one lights a lamp and puts it under a basket or in a hidden place. Rather, they put it on the stand so that everyone who comes and goes can see its light." 26. 1.  Gravity is the root of lightness;
stillness, the ruler of movement.

26. 2.  Therefore a wise prince, marching the whole day,
does not go far from his baggage waggons.
Although he may have brilliant prospects to look at,
he quietly remains (in his proper place),
indifferent to them.
How should the lord of a myriad chariots carry himself lightly before the kingdom?


Saying 34:
Jesus  leads
The skilful traveller
leaves no... 
footsteps
Jesus said, "If someone who's blind leads someone else who's blind, both of them fall into a pit." If he do act lightly, he has lost his root (of gravity);
if he proceed to active movement, he will lose his throne.


27. 1.  
The skilful traveller leaves no traces of his wheels or footsteps;
the skilful speaker says nothing that can be found fault with or blamed;
the skilful reckoner uses no tallies;


Saying 35:
Jesus said
,

Tie the hands
,

break in
&
loot
the house
Hiding his procedure, use no strings or knots,
open what has been shut
,
& cast away nothing
Jesus said, "No one can break into the house of the strong and take it by force without tying the hands of the strong. Then they can loot the house." the skilful closer needs no bolts or bars,
while to open what he has shut will be impossible;
the skilful binder uses no strings or knots,
while to unloose what he has bound will be impossible.
In the same way the sage is always skilful at saving men,
and so he does not cast away any man;
he is always skilful at saving things,
and so he does not cast away anything.
This is called 'Hiding the light of his procedure.'


(C.f. Hiding the light: "How unsearchable are his judgments and his ways past finding out... of him... through him, & to him, are all things," Romans 11:33, 36.)


Saying 36:
Don't
 
you be anxious about
what you will wear
Honour the master.
Rejoice
in the helper
Jesus said, "Don't [you] be anxious from morning to evening or from evening to morning about what you will wear."

(C.f. Love over fear: The helper will "respect his teacher... cherish his resources," Tao 27:2 Wikisource. With common purpose
the helper is also a resource for the teacher.)
27. 2.  Therefore the man of skill is a master (to be looked up to) by him who has not the skill;
and he who has not the skill is the helper
of (the reputation of) him who has the skill.
If the one did not honour his master,
and the other did not rejoice in his helper,
an (observer), though intelligent, might greatly err about them. This is called 'The utmost degree of mystery.'


Saying 37:
You will see
the Son of the Living One
Behold his presence the simple infant man
His disciples said, "When will you appear to us? When will we see you?"

Jesus said, "When you strip naked without being ashamed, and throw your clothes on the ground and stomp on them as little children would, then [you'll] see the Son of the Living One and won't be afraid."
28. 1.  Who knows his manhood's strength,
 Yet still his female feebleness maintains;
 As to one channel flow the many drains,
 All come to him, yea, all beneath the sky.
 Thus he the constant excellence retains;
 The simple child again, free from all stains.

 Who knows how white attracts,
 Yet always keeps himself within black's shade,
 The pattern of humility displayed,
 Displayed in view of all beneath the sky;
 He in the unchanging excellence arrayed,
 Endless return to man's first state has made.

 Who knows how glory shines,
 Yet loves disgrace, nor e'er for it is pale;
 Behold his presence in a spacious vale,
 To which men come from all beneath the sky.
 The unchanging excellence completes its tale;
 The simple infant man in him we hail.


Saying 38:
You have wanted to &
You will look for me
,
but you won't be able to find me
If any one should wish to get
the kingdom for himself... 

I see
that he will not succeed
Jesus said, "Often you've wanted to hear this message that I'm telling you, and you don't have anyone else from whom to hear it. There will be days when you'll look for me, but you won't be able to find me." 28. 2.
The unwrought material, when divided and distributed, forms vessels. The sage, when employed, becomes the Head of all the Officers (of government); and in his greatest regulations he employs no violent measures.

29. 1.  If any one should wish to get the kingdom for himself, and to effect this by what he does, I see that he will not succeed.


Saying 39:
They
have taken the keys (⳨) of knowledge and hidden them.
He who would hold it in his grasp loses and destroys it.
Jesus said, "The Pharisees and the scholars have taken the keys of knowledge and hidden them. They haven't entered, and haven't let others enter who wanted to. So be wise as serpents and innocent (harmless) as doves." The kingdom is a spirit-like thing,
and cannot be got by active doing.
He who would so win it destroys it;
he who would hold it in his grasp loses it.

29. 2.   The course and nature of things is such that
 What was in front is now behind;
 What warmed anon we freezing find.
 Strength is of weakness oft the spoil;
 The store in ruins mocks our toil.

Hence the sage puts away excessive effort,
extravagance, and easy indulgence.


Saying 40:
A grapevine has been planted outside of the Father 
it'll be pulled up by its root and destroyed
He who... asserts his mastery in the kingdom by force of arms is sure to meet with its proper return
Jesus said, "A grapevine has been planted outside of the Father. Since it's malnourished, it'll be pulled up by its root and destroyed." 30. 1.
He who would assist a lord of men in harmony with the Tao
will not assert his mastery in the kingdom by force of arms.
Such a course is sure to meet with its proper return.

30. 2.
Wherever a host is stationed, briars and thorns spring up.
In the sequence of great armies there are sure to be bad years.


Saying 41:
Having
More and Less
Having More is Less
Jesus said, "Whoever has something in hand will be given more, but whoever doesn't have anything will lose even what little they do have." 30. 3.
A skilful (commander) strikes a decisive blow, and stops.
He does not dare (by continuing his operations) to assert and complete his mastery.
He will strike the blow, but will be on his guard against being vain or boastful or arrogant in consequence of it.
He strikes it as a matter of necessity; he strikes it, but not from a wish for mastery.


Saying 42:
Passing By
Attain strong maturity
Jesus said, "Become passersby."

(C.f.  Become old vs. Become passersby)
30. 4.  When things have attained their strong maturity they become old. This may be said to be not in accordance with the Tao:
and what is not in accordance with it soon comes to an end.


Saying 43:
 
Jesus said, Realize
Who I am
& what I say.
Instead, you either love your history of violence or your worldly peace
They who have the Tao, & The superior man can find true repose
[Peace and spiritual rest] without
using the force of arms
His disciples said to him, "Who are you to say these things to us?"

Jesus said to them, "You don't realize who I am from what I say to you, but you've become like those Judeans who either love the tree but hate its fruit, or love the fruit but hate the tree."

(C.f. Jesus said, "Come to me, because my yoke is easy and my requirements are light. You'll be refreshed," Saying 90.)
31. 1.  Now arms, however beautiful, are instruments of evil omen,
hateful, it may be said, to all creatures.
Therefore they who have the Tao do not like to employ them.

31. 2.  The superior man ordinarily considers the left hand the most honourable place, but in time of war the right hand.
Those sharp weapons are instruments of evil omen,
and not the instruments of the superior man;
—he uses them only on the compulsion of necessity.
Calm and repose are what he prizes;
victory (by force of arms) is to him undesirable.
To consider this desirable would be to delight in the slaughter of men; and he who delights in the slaughter of men cannot get his will in the kingdom.

(C.f. Alternate Translations: "His minister of Peace on His left, & His General on His right," by John Dicus, or "The way for a vital [or living] man to go is not the way of a soldier," by Witter Bynner, Tao 31:2. ) They who have the Tao do not like to employ armsThe superior man prizes calm and repose. The base-natured man  delights in slaughter.)


Saying 44:
Jesus said, Be forgiven
If One embodies the Tao as a minister
men should weep
Jesus said, "Whoever blasphemes the Father will be forgiven, and whoever blasphemes the Son will be forgiven, but whoever blasphemes the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, neither on earth nor in heaven."


(C.f.
Jesus said, "The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit," John 6:63"Heaven and Earth (under its guidance) unite together," Tao 32:3.  Jesus said, "When you make the two One... then you will enter the kingdom," Saying 22 and 102. Revelation 21:1-2.)
31. 3.  On occasions of festivity to be on the left hand is the prized position; on occasions of mourning, the right hand.
The second in command of the army has his place on the left;
the general commanding in chief has his on the right;
—his place, that is, is assigned to him as in the rites of mourning.
He who has killed multitudes of men should weep for them with the bitterest grief; and the victor in battle has his place (rightly) according to those rites.

32. 1.  The Tao, considered as unchanging, has no name.

32. 2.  Though in its primordial simplicity it may be small, the whole world dares not deal with (one embodying) it as a minister.
If a feudal prince or the king could guard and hold it,
all would spontaneously submit themselves to him.

32. 3.  Heaven and Earth (under its guidance) unite together and send down the sweet dew, which, without the directions of men, reaches equally everywhere as of its own accord.


Saying 45:
A person
brings things out from their treasure
All the world is like that of the great rivers
and seas to the streams from the valleys
Jesus said, "Grapes aren't harvested from thorns, nor are figs gathered from thistles, because they don't produce fruitA person who's good brings good things out of their treasure, and a person who's [evil] brings evil things out of their evil treasure. They say evil things because their heart is full of evil." 32. 4.  As soon as it proceeds to action, it has a name.
When it once has that name,
(men) can know to rest in it.
When they know to rest in it,
they can be free from all risk of failure and error.

32. 5.  The relation of the Tao to all the world is like that of the great rivers
and seas to the streams from the valleys.

(C.f. Fruit is often grown in the valleys.)


Saying 46:
No one's been born who's
so much greater 
than
John the Baptizer
He who knows other men is discerning.
He is satisfied 
with his lot
Jesus said, "From Adam to John the Baptizer, no one's been born who's so much greater than John the Baptizer that they shouldn't avert their eyes. But I say that whoever among you will become a little child will know the kingdom and become greater than John." 33. 1.  He who knows other men is discerning;
he who knows himself is intelligent.
He who overcomes others is strong;
he who overcomes himself is mighty.
He who is satisfied with his lot is rich;
he who goes on acting with energy has a (firm) will.

33. 2.  He who does not fail in the requirements of his position, continues long;
he who dies and yet does not perish, has longevity.


Saying 47: 
Jesus said
,
A new patch of cloth isn't sewn onto an old coat
The Great Image (of the invisible Tao)
clothes all things as with a garment
Jesus said, "It's not possible for anyone to mount two horses or stretch two bows, and it's not possible for a servant to follow two leaders, because they'll respect one and despise the other.

"No one drinks old wine and immediately wants to drink new wine. And new wine isn't put in old wineskins, because they'd burst. Nor is old wine put in new wineskins, because it'd spoil.

"A new patch of cloth isn't sewn onto an old coat, because it'd tear apart."
34. 1.  All-pervading is the Great Tao!
It may be found on the left hand and on the right.

34. 2.  All things depend on it for their production,
which it gives to them, not one refusing obedience to it.
When its work is accomplished,
it does not claim the name of having done it.
It clothes all things as with a garment,
and makes no assumption of being their lord;
—it may be named in the smallest things.
All things return (to their root and disappear),
and do not know that it is it which presides over their doing so;
—it may be named in the greatest things.

34. 3.  Hence the sage is able (in the same way) to accomplish his great achievements.
It is through his not making himself great that he can accomplish them.

35. 1.  To him who holds in his hands the Great Image (of the invisible Tao), the whole world repairs.
Men resort to him, and receive no hurt,
but (find) rest, peace, and the feeling of ease.


Saying 48: 
Jesus said,

They'll say to the mountain, 'Go away,' and it will
The use of the Tao
as it comes from the mouth 
is inexhaustible
Jesus said, "If two make peace with each other in a single house, they'll say to the mountain, 'Go away,' and it will." 35. 2.
Music and dainties will make the passing guest stop (for a time).
But though the Tao as it comes from the mouth,
seems insipid and has no flavour,
though it seems not worth being looked at or listened to, the use of it is inexhaustible.


Saying 49:
Blessed is he who is One – he who is chosen
One... takes inspiration...  he will be raised up
Jesus said, "Blessed are those who are one – those who are chosen, because you'll find the kingdom. You've come from there and will return there." 36. 1.  When one is about to take an inspiration,
he is sure to make a (previous) expiration;
when he is going to weaken another,
he will first strengthen him;

when he is going to overthrow another,
he will first have raised him up;
when he is going to despoil another,
he will first have made gifts to him:
—this is called 'Hiding the light (of his procedure).'

36. 2.  The soft overcomes the hard;
and the weak the strong.

36. 3.  Fishes should not be taken from the deep;
instruments for the profit of a state should not be shown to the people.


Saying 50:
'What's the sign of your Father
?'
say, 'It's movement and rest.'
Simplicity without a name expresses at rest and still
Jesus said, "If they ask you, 'Where do you come from?' tell them, 'We've come from the light, the place where light came into being by itself, [established] itself, and appeared in their image.'

"If they ask you, 'Is it you?' then say, 'We are its children, and we're chosen by our living Father.'

"If they ask you, 'What's the sign of your Father in you?' then say, 'It's movement and rest.'"

(C.f.
'Where do you come from? Saying 50. "You've come from there and will return there," Saying 49.
See The above & the below.)

37. 1.  The Tao in its regular course does nothing (for the sake of doing it), and so there is nothing which it does not do.

37. 2.  If princes and kings were able to maintain it,
all things would of themselves be transformed by them.

37. 3.  If this transformation became to me an object of desire, I would express the desire by the nameless simplicity.

 Simplicity without a name
 Is free from all external aim.
 With no desire, at rest and still,
 All things go right as of their will.

(C.f. "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth... And God said... and he rested," Genesis 1:1,3, 2:2, Side by Side.)



PART 2.
Virtue
See and Know
The
highest degree:
Discover the Keys () to the Kingdom
At the climax of the texts at Saying 51
is the center and top of The Chiasm of the Kingdom )



Saying 51:
He said
to them, "What you're looking for has already come"
Those who possessed in highest degree
the attributes
 of the Tao
did not seek to show them
His disciples said to him, "When will the dead have rest, and when will the new world come?"

He said to them, "What you're looking for has already come, but you don't know it."

(C.f. "The Father's kingdom is already spread out over the earth, and people don't see it," Saying 113. And 2 Peter 3:12.)
38. 1.  (Those who) possessed in highest degree the attributes (of the Tao) did not (seek) to show them,
and therefore they possessed them (in fullest measure).
(Those who) possessed in a lower degree those attributes (sought how) not to lose them, and therefore they did not possess them (in fullest measure).

38. 2.  (Those who) possessed in the highest degree those attributes did nothing (with a purpose),
and had no need to do anything.
(Those who) possessed them in a lower degree were (always) doing, and had need to be so doing.



Saying 51 from Jesus is

 at the Top of the Arch or The Apex of This Chiasm of Kingdom

And 
Here Begins The Second Side of this Chiasm



Saying 52:
Twenty-four prophets

have spoken

but
You've ignored
the Living One
(Those who) possessed the highest were (always seeking) to show it  and had no need to be doing so
His disciples said to him, "Twenty-four prophets have spoken in Israel, and they all spoke of you."

He said to them, "You've ignored the Living One right in front of you, and you've talked about those who are dead."
38. 3.  (Those who) possessed the highest benevolence
were
(always seeking) to carry it out,
and had no need to be doing so.
(Those who) possessed the highest righteousness
were
(always seeking) to carry it out,
and had need to be so doing.

38. 4.  (Those who) possessed the highest (sense of) propriety
were
(always seeking) to show it,
and when men did not respond to it,
they bared the arm and marched up to them.


Saying 53: 
He said
True Circumcision
has become profitable
The Great man chooses the fruit
His disciples said to him, "Is circumcision useful, or not?"

He said to them, "If it were useful, their Father would have children who are born circumcised. But the true circumcision in spirit has become profitable in every way."
38. 5.  Thus it was that when the Tao was lost, its attributes appeared;
when its attributes were lost, benevolence appeared;
when benevolence was lost, righteousness appeared;
and when righteousness was lost, the proprieties appeared.

38. 6.  Now propriety is the attenuated form of leal-heartedness and good faith, and is also the commencement of disorder;
swift apprehension is (only) a flower of the Tao,
and is the beginning of stupidity.

38. 7.   Thus it is that the Great man abides by what is solid,
and eschews what is flimsy;
dwells with the fruit and not with the flower.
It is thus that he puts away the one and makes choice of the other.


Saying 54:
Those Who Are Poor
The things... from of old,
Earth
,
Spirits, ValleysAll creatures, & Princes and kings
Jesus said, "Blessed are those who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of heaven." 39. 1.
The things which from of old have got the One (the Tao) are—

 Heaven which by it is bright and pure;
 Earth rendered thereby firm and sure;
 Spirits with powers by it supplied;
 Valleys kept full throughout their void
 All creatures which through it do live
 Princes and kings who from it get
 The model which to all they give.


 At this point within the text within the word "Cross" in Saying 55
is found The
Hidden Key () mentioned at Saying 39 and 51.
This Staurogram is created by Joining two letters into One.
In Thomas it is located at the Climax of The Chiasm of Discipleship.
Like stones in a door-frame, the left & the right are seen aligned together with the key.
Understood and Interpreted using The Key these aligned sayings teach The Way.


Saying 55: 
Jesus said
,

become my disciple
.

Take up his cross like I do
All these are the results of the One (the Tao).
"Become at one!" Tao 39, Wikisource.
Jesus said, "Whoever doesn't hate his father and mother can't become my disciple, and whoever doesn't hate his brothers and sisters and take up his cross in my way isn't worthy of me." All these are the results of the One (Tao).

(C.f.
"Become at one!" Tao 39, Wikisource. Become One by taking up your cross. Two become one by carrying the cross together. The Two letters Tau [T] & Rho [P] are joined together as One to become the Tau-Rho Cross, and perhaps illustrate this yoking together of disciple and Master. The disciple Paul wrote , "I am crucified with Christ," Galatians 2:20. See also Saying 2248, 90 106.)


Saying 56: 
Jesus said,
Of them
the world
isn't worthy
Princes and kings however grand and high
without
that life 
rend like heaven and earth
Jesus said, "Whoever has known the world has found a corpse. Whoever has found a corpse, of them the world isn't worthy." 39. 2.

 If heaven were not thus pure, it soon would rend;
 If earth were not thus sure, 'twould break and bend;
 Without these powers, the spirits soon would fail;
 If not so filled, the drought would parch each vale;
 Without that life, creatures would pass away;
 Princes and kings, without that moral sway,
 However grand and high, would all decay.

39. 3. Thus it is that dignity finds its (firm) root in its (previous) meanness, and what is lofty finds its stability in the lowness (from which it rises).


Saying 57:
My Fathers' kingdom
can be compared to someone who had good seed
Princes and kings call themselves 'Orphans,'
'Men of small virtue,'
Jesus said, "My Fathers' kingdom can be compared to someone who had [good] seed. Their enemy came by night and sowed weeds among the good seed. The person didn't let anyone pull out the weeds, 'so that you don't pull out the wheat along with the weeds,' they said to them. 'On the day of the harvest, the weeds will be obvious. Then they'll be pulled out and burned.'"

(C.f. Jesus said, "All things are plain in the sight of heaven," Saying 6.)
Hence princes and kings call themselves 'Orphans,' 'Men of small virtue,' and as 'Carriages without a nave.'
Is not this an acknowledgment that in their considering themselves mean they see the foundation of their dignity?
So it is that in the enumeration of the different parts of a carriage
we do not come on what makes it answer the ends of a carriage.
They do not wish to show themselves elegant-looking as jade,
but (prefer) to be coarse-looking as an (ordinary) stone.

40. 1.
 The movement of the Tao
 By contraries proceeds;
 And weakness marks the course
 Of Tao's mighty deeds.

40. 2. All things under heaven sprang from It as existing (and named); that existence sprang from It as non-existent (and not named).


Saying 58:
The person who's gone to a lot of trouble.
They've found
life
Scholars of the highest class,
when they hear about the Tao,
earnestly carry it into practice
Jesus said, "Blessed is the person who's gone to a lot of trouble. They've found life." 41. 1.  Scholars of the highest class,
when they hear about the Tao,
earnestly carry it into practice.
Scholars of the middle class,
when they have heard about it,
seem now to keep it and now to lose it.
Scholars of the lowest class,
when they have heard about it,
laugh greatly at it.
If it were not (thus) laughed at,
it would not be fit to be the Tao.


Saying 59:
Look for the Living One...
try to look for him
Its greatest beauty seems to offend the eyes
Jesus said, "Look for the Living One while you're still alive. If you die and then try to look for him, you won't be able to." 41. 2.
Therefore the sentence-makers have thus expressed themselves:—

 'The Tao, when brightest seen, seems light to lack;
 Who progress in it makes, seems drawing back;
 Its even way is like a rugged track.
 Its highest virtue from the vale doth rise;
 Its greatest beauty seems to offend the eyes;
 And he has most whose lot the least supplies.


Saying 60:
He said, That man is round about the lamb
The Tao is hidden, but never word it said;
They saw a Samaritan carrying a lamb to Judea. He said to his disciples, "That man is round about the lamb."

They said to him, "He's going to kill it and eat it."

He said to them, "While it's living, he won't eat it, but only after he kills it and it becomes a corpse."

They said, "He can't do it any other way."

He said to them, "You, too, look for a resting place, so that you won't become a corpse and be eaten."


(C.f. "He opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth," Isaiah 53:7.)
 Its firmest virtue seems but poor and low;
 Its solid truth seems change to undergo;
 Its largest square doth yet no corner show
 A vessel great, it is the slowest made;
 Loud is its sound, but never word it said;
 A semblance great, the shadow of a shade.'

41. 3.  The Tao is hidden, and has no name;
but it is the Tao which is skilful at imparting (to all things what they need)
and making them complete.

42. 1.  The Tao produced One; One produced Two; Two produced Three; Three produced All things.
All things leave behind them the Obscurity (out of which they have come), and go forward to embrace the Brightness (into which they have emerged), while they are harmonised by the Breath of Vacancy.

42. 2.  What men dislike is to be orphans,
to have little virtue, to be as carriages without naves;
and yet these are the designations which kings and princes use for themselves.
So it is that some things are increased by being diminished,
and others are diminished by being increased.


(C.f.
"These are the hidden sayings that the living Jesus spoke," Sayings Prologue. Look for a resting place. Jesus said, "Come to me, because my yoke is easy and my requirements are light. You'll be refreshed," Saying 90.)


Saying 61: 
Jesus said
,
"Two will rest on a couch.
One will die, the other will live
Teaching without words,
What other men teach, I also teach
.
The violent and strong do not die their natural death
Jesus said, "Two will rest on a couch. One will die, the other will live."

Salome said, "Who are you, Sir, to climb onto my couch and eat off my table as if you're from someone?"

Jesus said to her, "I'm the one who exists from what is whole. Some of what belongs to my Father was given to me."

"I'm your disciple."

"So I'm telling you, if someone is whole, they'll be full of light; but if they're divided, they'll be full of darkness."

(C.f.
Jesus said, "Many are waiting at the door, but those who are one will enter the bridal chamber," Saying 75.)
42. 3.  What other men (thus) teach, I also teach.
The violent and strong do not die their natural death. I will make this the basis of my teaching.

43. 1.  The softest thing in the world dashes against and overcomes the hardest; that which has no (substantial) existence enters where there is no crevice. I know hereby what advantage belongs to doing nothing (with a purpose).

43. 2.  There are few in the world who attain to the teaching without words, and the advantage arising from non-action.

44. 1.

 Or fame or life,
 Which do you hold more dear?
 Or life or wealth,
 To which would you adhere?
 Keep life and lose those other things;
 Keep them and lose your lifewhich brings
 Sorrow and pain more near?


Saying 62:
I tell my mysteries
Thus we may see what is more great
Jesus said, "I tell my mysteries to those who are worthy of my mysteries. Don't let your left hand know what your right hand is doing."

(C.f. "This is a great mystery," Ephesians 5:32.)
44. 2.
 Thus we may see,
 Who cleaves to fame
 Rejects what is more great;
 Who loves large stores
 Gives up the richer state.


Saying 63:
There was a rich man who had much money. He was thinking I'll use my money. 
Who thinks his great achievements poor
Who is content Needs fear no shame
Jesus said, "There was a rich man who had much money. He said, 'I'll use my money to sow, reap, plant, and fill my barns with fruit, so that I won't need anything.' That's what he was thinking to himself, but he died that very night. Anyone who has ears to hear should hear!" 44. 3.

 Who is content
 Needs fear no shame.
 Who knows to stop
 Incurs no blame.
 From danger free
 Long live shall he.

45. 1.

 Who thinks his great achievements poor
 Shall find his vigour long endure.
 Of greatest fulness, deemed a void,
 Exhaustion ne'er shall stem the tide.
 Do thou what's straight still crooked deem;
 Thy greatest art still stupid seem,
 And eloquence a stammering scream.


Saying 64: 
Jesus said
,
Bring whomever you find so that they can have dinner
Purity and stillness give the correct law. The people all keep their eyes and ears directed to him, and he deals with them all as his children.
Jesus said, "Someone was planning on having guests. When dinner was ready, they sent their servant to call the visitors.

"The servant went to the first and said, 'My master invites you.'
"They said, 'Some merchants owe me money. They're coming tonight. I need to go and give them instructions. Excuse me from the dinner.'

"The servant went to another one and said, 'My master invites you.'
"They said, "I've just bought a house and am needed for the day. I won't have time.'

"The servant went to another one and said, 'My master invites you.'
"They said, 'My friend is getting married and I'm going to make dinner. I can't come. Excuse me from the dinner.'

"The servant went to another one and said, 'My master invites you.'
"They said, "I've just bought a farm and am going to collect the rent. I can't come. Excuse me.'

"The servant went back and told the master, 'The ones you've invited to the dinner have excused themselves.'

"The master said to their servant, 'Go out to the roads and bring whomever you find so that they can have dinner.'

"Buyers and merchants won't [enter] the places of my Father."
45. 2. Constant action overcomes cold; being still overcomes heat.
Purity and stillness give the correct law to all under heaven.

46. 1. When the Tao prevails in the world,
they send back their swift horses to (draw) the dung-carts.
When the Tao is disregarded in the world,
the war-horses breed in the border lands.

46. 2. There is no guilt greater than to sanction ambition;
no calamity greater than to be discontented with one's lot;
no fault greater than the wish to be getting.
Therefore the sufficiency of contentment is an enduring and unchanging sufficiency.

47. 1.  Without going outside his door, one understands (all that takes place) under the sky; without looking out from his window, one sees the Tao of Heaven.  The farther that one goes out (from himself), the less he knows.

47. 2.  Therefore the sages got their knowledge without travelling; gave their (right) names to things without seeing them; and accomplished their ends without any purpose of doing so.

48. 1.  He who devotes himself to learning (seeks) from day to day to increase (his knowledge); he who devotes himself to the Tao (seeks) from day to day to diminish (his doing).

48. 2.  He diminishes it and again diminishes it, till he arrives at doing nothing (on purpose). Having arrived at this point of non-action, there is nothing which he does not do.

48. 3.  He who gets as his own all under heaven does so by giving himself no trouble (with that end). If one take trouble (with that end), he is not equal to getting as his own all under heaven.

49. 1.  The sage has no invariable mind of his own;
he makes the mind of the people his mind.

49. 2.  To those who are good (to me), I am good;
and to those who are not good (to me), I am also good;
—and thus (all) get to be good.
To those who are sincere (with me), I am sincere;
and to those who are not sincere (with me), I am also sincere; —and thus (all) get to be sincere.

49. 3.  The sage has in the world an appearance of indecision,
and keeps his mind in a state of indifference to all.
The people all keep their eyes and ears directed to him,
and he deals with them all as his children.



Saying 65:
Maybe they'll show
some respect to

my son
All things without exception honour the Tao
He said, "A [creditor] owned a vineyard. He leased it out to some sharecroppers to work it so he could collect its fruit.

"He sent his servant so that the sharecroppers could give him the fruit of the vineyard. They seized his servant, beat him, and nearly killed him.

"The servant went back and told his master. His master said, 'Maybe he just didn't know them.' He sent another servant, but the tenants beat that one too.

"Then the master sent his son, thinking, 'Maybe they'll show some respect to my son.'

"Because they knew that he was the heir of the vineyard, the sharecroppers seized and killed him. Anyone who has ears to hear should hear!"
50. 1.  Men come forth and live; they enter (again) and die.

50. 2.  Of every ten three are ministers of life (to themselves);  and three are ministers of death.

50. 3.  There are also three in every ten whose aim is to live, but whose movements tend to the land (or place) of death.  And for what reason?  Because of their excessive endeavours to perpetuate life.

50. 4. But I have heard that he who is skilful in managing the life entrusted to him for a time travels on the land without having to shun rhinoceros or tiger,  and enters a host without having to avoid buff coat or sharp weapon. The rhinoceros finds no place in him into which to thrust its horn, nor the tiger a place in which to fix its claws, nor the weapon a place to admit its point.
And for what reason?
Because there is in him no place of death.

51. 1.  All things are produced by the Tao,
and nourished by its outflowing operation.
They receive their forms according to the nature of each,
and are completed according to the circumstances of their condition. Therefore all things without exception honour the Tao, and exalt its outflowing operation.

51. 2.  This honouring of the Tao and exalting of its operation is not the result of any ordination, but always a spontaneous tribute.


Saying 66: 
Jesus said
,
Show me the stone
The Tao brings them to maturity.
This is called its mysterious operation
Jesus said, "Show me the stone the builders rejected; that's the cornerstone." 51. 3.  Thus it is that the Tao produces (all things), nourishes them, brings them to their full growth, nurses them, completes them, matures them, maintains them, and overspreads them.

51.
4.  It produces them and makes no claim to the possession of them;
it carries them through their processes and does not vaunt its ability in doing so;
it brings them to maturity and exercises no control over them;
—this is called its mysterious operation.


Saying 67:  Jesus said,
Knowing
Isn't Everything
When one knows the all 
he guard the qualities of
the mother
Jesus said, "Whoever knows everything (or the all), but is personally lacking, lacks everything."

(Jesus said, "My true mother gave me life," Saying 101.)
52. 1.  (The Tao) which originated all under the sky is to be considered as the mother of them all.

52. 2.  When the mother is found,
we know what her children should be.
When one knows that he is his mother's child,
and proceeds to guard (the qualities of) the mother that belong to him, to the end of his life he will be free from all peril.



Saying 68:
Blessed are you
when
you are hated 
and persecuted
He will be exempt from laborious exertion.
And
all his life there will be no safety for him
Jesus said, "Blessed are you when you're hated and persecuted, and no place will be found where you've been persecuted."

(C.f. Jesus said, "Love your brother as your own soul. Guard them like the pupil of your eye," Saying 25.)
52. 3.  Let him keep his mouth closed,
and shut up the portals (of his nostrils),
and all his life he will be exempt from laborious exertion.
Let him keep his mouth open,
and (spend his breath) in the promotion of his affairs,
and all his life there will be no safety for him.

52. 4.  The perception of what is small is (the secret of) clear-sightedness;
the guarding of what is soft and tender is (the secret of) strength.


Saying 69: 
Jesus said
, "Blessed are those who've been persecuted in their own hearts.
According to the Great Tao,
what I should be most afraid of
would be a boastful display
Jesus said, "Blessed are those who've been persecuted in their own hearts. They've truly known the Father. Blessed are those who are hungry, so that their stomachs may be filled."

(C.f. Jesus said, "When you know yourselves, then you'll be known," Saying 3.)
52. 5.

 Who uses well his light,
 Reverting to its (source so) bright,
 Will from his body ward all blight,
 And hides the unchanging from men's sight.

53. 1.  If I were suddenly to become known,
and (put into a position to) conduct (a government) according to the Great Tao, what I should be most afraid of would be a boastful display.


Saying 70:
Jesus said
,
What you have
within you
will save you
The great Tao (or way) is a superabundance
kept very level and easy
Jesus said, "If you give birth to what's within you, what you have within you will save you. If you don't have that within you, what you don't have within you will kill you."


(C.f. Jesus said, "Come to me, because my yoke is easy and my requirements are light. You'll be refreshed," Saying 90.)
53. 2.  The great Tao (or way) is very level and easy;
but people love the by-ways.

53. 3.  Their court(-yards and buildings) shall be well kept,
but their fields shall be ill-cultivated,
and their granaries very empty.
They shall wear elegant and ornamented robes,
carry a sharp sword at their girdle,
pamper themselves in eating and drinking,
and have a superabundance of property and wealth;
—such (princes) may be called robbers and boasters.
This is contrary to the Tao surely!



Saying 71: 
Jesus said
,
"I'll destroy this house
Sacrifices to his shrine... What (Tao's) skilful planter plants (or the builder builds) can never be uptorn
Jesus said, "I'll destroy this house, and no one will be able to build it […]"

(C.f.  Sowing and Building: A skillful builder does not destroy, Tao 54:1.  
Planters & Builders: Jesus said, "A city built and fortified on a high mountain can't fall," Saying 33. Jesus said, "Now the sower went out, took a handful of seeds, and scattered them," Saying 9.)
54. 1.

 What (Tao's) skilful planter plants
 Can never be uptorn;
 What his skilful arms enfold,
 From him can ne'er be borne.
 Sons shall bring in lengthening line,
 Sacrifices to his shrine.


Saying 72:
Tell
my brothers
to divide our inheritance
In the family; in the neighbourhood; in the state; and in the kingdom. In different cases Good fortune will be found
Someone said to him, "Tell my brothers to divide our inheritance with me."

He said to him, "Who made me a divider?"

He turned to his disciples and said to them, "Am I really a divider?"
54. 2.

 Tao when nursed within one's self,
 His vigour will make true;
 And where the family it rules
 What riches will accrue!
 The neighbourhood where it prevails
 In thriving will abound;
 And when 'tis seen throughout the state,
 Good fortune will be found.
 Employ it the kingdom o'er,
 And men thrive all around.

54. 3.  In this way the effect will be seen in the person, by the observation of different cases; in the family; in the neighbourhood; in the state; and in the kingdom.


Saying 73:
Jesus said, The workers
go
to the harvest
In this method & Way he who is like an infant will not be stung even by poisonous insects
Jesus said, "The harvest really is plentiful, but the workers are few. So pray that the Lord will send workers to the harvest."

( C.f. "The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few... I send you forth as lambs among wolves... I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you," Luke 10:2,3 19. )
54. 4.  How do I know that this effect is sure to hold thus all under the sky?
By this (method of observation).

55. 1.  He who has in himself abundantly the attributes (of the Tao) is like an infant.

Poisonous insects will not sting him;
fierce beasts will not seize him;
birds of prey will not strike him.


Saying 74:
Many are gathered

but there's nothing to drink
The infant's bones are weak 
but yet its grasp is firm
He said, "Lord, many are gathered around the well, but there's nothing to drink."

(C.f. Jesus saw some infants nursing. He said to his disciples, "These nursing infants can be compared to those who enter the kingdom," Saying 22.)
55. 2.
(The infant's) bones are weak and its sinews soft, but yet its grasp is firm.


Saying 75:
Jesus said
,
"
Those who are one
will
enter the bridal chamber
To him by whom this harmony is known,
(The secret of) the unchanging (Tao)
is shown
... 
The union of male and female
Jesus said, "Many are waiting at the door, but those who are one will enter the bridal chamber."

(C.f. His disciples said to him, "When will the kingdom come?" "It won't come by waiting for it," Saying 113. "When you make the two into one... & make the male and the female a single one [and the same] so that the male won't be male nor the female female... then you'll enter the kingdom," Saying 22.)
It knows not yet the union of male and female,
and yet its virile member may be excited;
—showing the perfection of its physical essence.
All day long it will cry without its throat becoming hoarse;
—showing the harmony (in its constitution).

55. 3.

 To him by whom this harmony is known,
 (The secret of) the unchanging (Tao) is shown,
 And in the knowledge wisdom finds its throne.
 All life-increasing arts to evil turn;
 Where the mind makes the vital breath to burn,
 (False) is the strength, (and o'er it we should mourn.)

55. 4. When things have become strong,
they (then) become old,
which may be said to be contrary to the Tao.
Whatever is contrary to the Tao soon ends.


Saying 76:
Jesus said, They sold their merchandise and bought that single pearl for themselves.
He who knows (the Tao) does not (care to) speak (about it);
This is called 'the Mysterious Agreement
.'
Jesus said, "The Father's kingdom can be compared to a merchant with merchandise who found a pearl. The merchant was wise; they sold their merchandise and bought that single pearl for themselves.

"You, too, look for the treasure that doesn't perish but endures, where no moths come to eat and no worms destroy."
56. 1.  He who knows (the Tao) does not (care to) speak (about it);
he who is (ever ready to) speak about it does not know it.

56. 2.  He (who knows it) will keep his mouth shut and close the portals (of his nostrils). He will blunt his sharp points and unravel the complications of things;
he will attemper his brightness,
and bring himself into agreement with the obscurity (of others).
This is called 'the Mysterious Agreement.'

56. 3.  (Such an one) cannot be treated familiarly or distantly;
he is beyond all consideration of profit or injury;
of nobility or meanness:
—he is the noblest man under heaven.



Saying 77: 
Jesus said
I am the All. The All... unfolds toward me
By measures of correction the kingdom is made one's own
Jesus said, "I'm the light that's over all. I am the All. The All has come from me and unfolds toward me.

"Split a log; I am there. Lift the stone, and you'll find me there."

57. 1.  A state may be ruled by (measures of) correction;
weapons of war may be used with crafty dexterity;
(but) the kingdom is made one's own (only) by freedom from action and purpose.

57. 2.  How do I know that it is so?
By these facts:
—In the kingdom the multiplication of prohibitive enactments increases the poverty of the people;
the more implements to add to their profit that the people have,
the greater disorder is there in the state and clan;
the more acts of crafty dexterity that men possess,
the more do strange contrivances appear; the more display there is of legislation, the more thieves and robbers there are.


Saying 78: 
Jesus said
, "What did you go out into the desert to see?
A reed shaken by the wind?"
A sage has said,
"
The people will be transformed of themselves
.
I will be fond of keeping still
."
Jesus said, "What did you go out into the desert to see? A reed shaken by the wind? A person wearing fancy clotheslike your rulers and powerful people? They wear fancy clothes, but can't know the truth."

(C.f. Jesus said, "Take heed of the living one while you are alive, lest you die & seek to see him & be unable to do so," Saying 59. "We know... we shall be [transformed to be] like him; for we shall see him as he is," 1 John 3:2.)
57. 3.  Therefore a sage has said,
'I will do nothing (of purpose), and the people will be transformed of themselves;
I will be fond of keeping still,
and the people will of themselves become correct.
I will take no trouble about it,
and the people will of themselves become rich;
I will manifest no ambition,
and the people will of themselves attain to the primitive simplicity.'

58. 1.

 The government that seems the most unwise,
 Oft goodness to the people best supplies;
 That which is meddling, touching everything,
 Will work but ill, and disappointment bring.


Saying 79:
Blessed
are 
those who have listened to the message of the Father and kept it
Happiness is for he who is straightforward concerning the method and allows himself no license
A woman in the crowd said to him, "Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts that nourished you."

He said to her, "Blessed are those who have listened to the message of the Father and kept it, because there will be days when you'll say, 'Blessed is the womb that didn't conceive and the breasts that haven't given milk.'"

(C.f Jesus said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it," Luke 11:28.)
Misery!
—happiness is to be found by its side!
Happiness!
—misery lurks beneath it!
Who knows what either will come to in the end?

58. 2.
Shall we then dispense with correction?
The (method of) correction shall by a turn become distortion,
and the good in it shall by a turn become evil.
The delusion of the people (on this point) has indeed subsisted for a long time.

58. 3.
Therefore the sage is (like) a square which cuts no one (with its angles);
(like) a corner which injures no one (with its sharpness).
He is straightforward, but allows himself no license;
he is bright, but does not dazzle.


Saying 80:
Whoever has found

the body
Accumulate the attributes.
Return to man's normal state
Jesus said, "Whoever has known the world has found the body; but whoever has found the body, of them the world isn't worthy." 59. 1.  For regulating the human (in our constitution)
and rendering the (proper) service to the heavenly,
there is nothing like moderation.

59. 2.  It is only by this moderation that
there is effected an early return
(to man's normal state).
That early return is what I call the repeated accumulation of the attributes (of the Tao).
With that repeated accumulation of those attributes,
there comes the subjugation (of every obstacle to such return).


Saying 81:
Whoever has should become a ruler and renounce it
He who possesses may be the ruler.
Governing
is like cooking small fish
Jesus said, "Whoever has become rich should become a ruler, and whoever has power should renounce it."

(Jesus said, "A wise fisher... cast all the little fish back," Saying 8.)
Of this subjugation we know not what shall be the limit;
and when one knows not what the limit shall be,
he may be the ruler of a state.

59. 3.  He who possesses the mother of the state may continue long. His case is like that (of the plant) of which we say that its roots are deep and its flower stalks firm:
—this is the way to secure that its enduring life shall long be seen.

60. 1.  Governing a great state is like cooking small fish.


Saying 82:
Jesus said, Whoever is near me is near the fire
The ruling sage does not hurt men.
The
energy of two converge in the virtue (of the Tao)
Jesus said, "Whoever is near me is near the fire, and whoever is far from me is far from the kingdom."


(C.f.
Converge: Jesus said, "If two make peace with each other in a single house, they'll say to the mountain, 'Go away,' and it will," Saying 48.)
60. 2.  Let the kingdom be governed according to the Tao,
and the manes of the departed will not manifest their spiritual energy.
It is not that those manes have not that spiritual energy,
but it will not be employed to hurt men.
It is not that it could not hurt men,
but neither does the ruling sage hurt them.

60. 3.  When these two do not injuriously affect each other,
their good influences converge in the virtue (of the Tao).

61. 1.  What makes a great state is its being (like) a low-lying,
down-flowing (stream);
—it becomes the centre to which tend (all the small states)
under heaven
.


Saying 83: 
Be hidden
by his light
Stillness may be considered (a sort of) abasement
Jesus said, "Images are revealed to people, but the light within them is hidden in the image of the Father's light. He'll be revealed, but his image will be hidden by his light." 61. 2.  (To illustrate from) the case of all females:
—the female always overcomes the male by her stillness.
Stillness may be considered (a sort of) abasement.

61. 3.  Thus it is that a great state,
by condescending to small states,
gains them for itself; and that small states,
by abasing themselves to a great state,
win it over to them.


Saying 84:
When you see... that 
which doesn't die how much you'll have to bear
The great... wishes to unite men, but the great... must learn to abase itself
Jesus said, "When you see your likeness, you rejoice. But when you see your images that came into being before you did – which don't die, and aren't revealed – how much you'll have to bear!"
In the one case the abasement leads to gaining adherents, in the other case to procuring favour.

61. 4.  The great state only wishes to unite men together and nourish them;
a small state only wishes to be received by,
and to serve, the other.
Each gets what it desires,
but the great state must learn to abase itself.


Saying 85: 
Jesus said
,
Adam didn't become worthy
Like the Son of Heaven even men who are not good are not abandoned by the Tao
Jesus said, "Adam came into being from a great power and great wealth, but he didn't become worthy of you. If he had been worthy, [he wouldn't have tasted] death." 62. 1.

 Tao has of all things the most honoured place.
 No treasures give good men so rich a grace;
 Bad men it guards, and doth their ill efface.

62. 2.  (Its) admirable words can purchase honour;
(its) admirable deeds can raise their performer above others. Even men who are not good are not abandoned by it.

62. 3.  Therefore when the sovereign occupies his place as the Son of Heaven, and he has appointed his three ducal ministers, though (a prince) were to send in a round symbol-of-rank large enough to fill both the hands, and that as the precursor of the team of horses (in the court-yard), such an offering would not be equal to (a lesson of) this Tao, which one might present on his knees.


Saying 86: 
The Son of Humanity
has nowhere to lay his head and rest
This Tao could be got by seeking for it,
and the guilty could escape (from the stain of their guilt) by it
Jesus said, "[The foxes have dens] and the birds have nests, but the Son of Humanity has nowhere to lay his head and rest."
62. 4.  Why was it that the ancients prized this Tao so much?
Was it not because it could be got by seeking for it,
and the guilty could escape (from the stain of their guilt) by it? This is the reason why all under heaven consider it the most valuable thing.


Saying 87:
Jesus said, "How miserable is the body and soul
(It is the way of the Tao) to anticipates things &
to conduct affairs without
(feeling the) trouble of them
Jesus said, "How miserable is the body that depends on a body, and how miserable is the soul that depends on both." 63. 1.  (It is the way of the Tao) to act without (thinking of) acting;
to conduct affairs without (feeling the) trouble of them;
to taste without discerning any flavour;
to consider what is small as great, and a few as many;
and to recompense injury with kindness.

63. 2.  (The master of it) anticipates things that are difficult while they are easy, and does things that would become great while they are small. All difficult things in the world are sure to arise from a previous state in which they were easy, and all great things from one in which they were small.

Therefore the sage, while he never does what is great,
is able on that account to accomplish the greatest things.


Saying 88:  
When
will they come to give and take
Before a thing has given indications of its presence, it is easy to take measures against it
Jesus said, "The angels and the prophets will come to you and give you what belongs to you. You'll give them what you have and ask yourselves, 'When will they come and take what is theirs?'" 63. 3.  He who lightly promises is sure to keep but little faith; he who is continually thinking things easy is sure to find them difficult.
Therefore the sage sees difficulty even in what seems easy, and so never has any difficulties.

64. 1. That which is at rest is easily kept hold of;
before a thing has given indications of its presence,
it is easy to take measures against it; that which is brittle is easily broken; that which is very small is easily dispersed.



Saying 89:
The
inside & the outside
The sprout & the branches that spread
Jesus said, "Why do you wash the outside of the cup? Don't you know that whoever created the inside created the outside too?" Action should be taken before a thing has made its appearance;
order should be secured before disorder has begun.

64. 2.  The tree which fills the arms grew from the tiniest sprout;
the tower of nine storeys rose from a (small) heap of earth;
the journey of a thousand li commenced with a single step.


Saying 90: 
Jesus said
,
My yoke is easy
The sage does not lose his hold
Jesus said, "Come to me, because my yoke is easy and my requirements are light. You'll be refreshed." 64. 3.
He who acts (with an ulterior purpose) does harm;
he who takes hold of a thing (in the same way) loses his hold.
The sage does not act (so), and therefore does no harm;
he does not lay hold (so), and therefore does not lose his hold.
(But) people in their conduct of affairs are constantly ruining them when they are on the eve of success.
If they were careful at the end,
as (they should be) at the beginning,
they would not so ruin them.


Saying 91:
Jesus
said, "You read the face of the sky and the earth
The sage learns what (other men) do not learn
They said to him, "Tell us who you are so that we may trust you."

He said to them, "You read the face of the sky and the earth, but you don't know the one right in front of you, and you don't know how to read the present moment."
64. 4.  Therefore the sage desires what (other men) do not desire,
and does not prize things difficult to get;
he learns what (other men) do not learn,
and turns back to what the multitude of men have passed by.
Thus he helps the natural development of all things,
and does not dare to act (with an ulterior purpose of his own).

65. 1.  The ancients who showed their skill in practising the Tao did so, not to enlighten the people,
but rather to make them simple and ignorant.

65. 2.  The difficulty in governing the people arises from their having much knowledge.
He who (tries to) govern a state by his wisdom is a scourge to it;
while he who does not (try to) do so is a blessing.



Saying 92:
Jesus said
, "Look and you'll find.
He who knows this model and rule finds
Jesus said, "Look and you'll find. I didn't answer your questions before. Now I want to give you answers, but you aren't looking for them." 65. 3. He who knows these two things finds in them also his model and rule.
Ability to know this model and rule constitutes what we call the mysterious excellence (of a governor).
Deep and far-reaching is such mysterious excellence,
showing indeed its possessor as opposite to others,
but leading them to a great conformity to him.


Saying 93:
Jesus said, Don't throw pearls... under their feet
The sage (rulerputs himself by his words below them
Jesus said, "Don't give what's holy to the dogs, or else it might be thrown on the manure pile. Don't throw pearls to the pigs, or else they might […]"

(C.f. Jesus said, "Neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you," Matthew 7:6.)
66. 1.  That whereby the rivers and seas are able
to receive the homage and tribute of all the valley streams,
is their skill in being lower than they;
—it is thus that they are the kings of them all.
So it is that the sage (ruler), wishing to be above men,
puts himself by his words below them, and, wishing to be before themplaces his person behind them.

66. 2.  In this way though he has his place above them,
men do not feel his weight,
nor though he has his place before them,
do they feel it an injury to them.


Saying 94:
Whoever looks will find
In all the world... No one finds
Jesus [said], "Whoever looks will find, [and whoever knocks], it will be opened for them."

(C.f.  Superior - inferior: Jesus said, "He who has recognized the world has found the body, but he who has found the body is superior to the world," Saying 80, 56, 111. )
66. 3.  Therefore all in the world delight to exalt him and do not weary of him.
Because he does not strive, no one finds it possible to strive with him.

67. 1.  All the world says that, while my Tao is great,
it yet appears to be inferior (to other systems of teaching).
Now it is just its greatness that makes it seem to be inferior.
If it were like any other (system),
for long would its smallness have been known!


Saying 95:
If you have money... give it  
I have three precious things. I can be liberal
[Jesus said], "If you have money, don't lend it at interest. Instead, give [it to] someone from whom you won't get it back." 67. 2.  But I have three precious things which I prize and hold fast.
The first is gentleness; the second is economy;
and the third is shrinking from taking precedence of others.

67. 3.  With that gentleness I can be bold;
with that economy I can be liberal;
shrinking from taking precedence of others,
I can become a vessel of the highest honour.
Now-a-days they give up gentleness and are all for being bold;
economy, and are all for being liberal;
the hindmost place, and seek only to be foremost;
—(of all which the end is) death.


Saying 96:
Jesus said
Anyone who has ears to hear should hear the Father's kingdom
In (Tao's) wars Heaven will save its possessor
Jesus [said], "The Father's kingdom can be compared to a woman who took a little yeast and [hid] it in flour. She made it into large loaves of bread. Anyone who has ears to hear should hear!" 67. 4.  Gentleness is sure to be victorious even in battle,
and firmly to maintain its ground.
Heaven will save its possessor,
by his (very) gentleness protecting him.

68.

 He who in (Tao's) wars has skill
 Assumes no martial port;
 He who fights with most good will
 To rage makes no resort.


Saying 97:
Jesus said,

She was walking down a long road
A master has said
I do not dare to advance an inch; I prefer to retire a foot
Jesus said, "The Father's kingdom can be compared to a woman carrying a jar of flour. While she was walking down [a] long road, the jar's handle broke and the flour spilled out behind her on the road. She didn't know it, and didn't realize there was a problem until she got home, put down the jar, and found it empty." He who vanquishes yet still
 Keeps from his foes apart;
 He whose hests men most fulfil
 Yet humbly plies his art.

Thus we say, 'He ne'er contends,
 And therein is his might.'
 Thus we say, 'Men's wills he bends,
 That they with him unite.'
 Thus we say, 'Like Heaven's his ends,
 No sage of old more bright.'

69. 1.  A master of the art of war has said,
'I do not dare to be the host (to commence the war);
I prefer to be the guest (to act on the defensive).
I do not dare to advance an inch; I prefer to retire a foot.'



Saying 98: 
Jesus said
,
He drew his sword in his house and drove it into the wall to figure it out.  Then he killed the powerful one
My words are very easy to know, and very easy to practise;
but there is no one in the world who is able to know and able to practise them.
Jesus said, "The Father's kingdom can be compared to a man who wanted to kill someone powerful. He drew his sword in his house and drove it into the wall to figure out whether his hand was strong enough. Then he killed the powerful one." This is called marshalling the ranks where there are no ranks;
baring the arms (to fight) where there are no arms to bare;
grasping the weapon where there is no weapon to grasp;
advancing against the enemy where there is no enemy.

69. 2.  There is no calamity greater than lightly engaging in war. To do that is near losing (the gentleness) which is so precious. Thus it is that when opposing weapons are (actually) crossed, he who deplores (the situation) conquers.

70. 1.  My words are very easy to know,
and very easy to practise; but there is no one in the world who is able to know and able to practise them.



Saying 99: 
Jesus said to them
,
These are the people here who do the will of my Father
The sage who wears a poor garb said There is an originating and all-comprehending (principle) in my words, and an authoritative law for the things (which I enforce).
The disciples said to him, "Your brothers and mother are standing outside."

He said to them, "The people here who do the will of my Father are my brothers and mother; they're the ones who will enter my Father's kingdom."
70. 2.  There is an originating and all-comprehending (principle) in my words,
and an authoritative law for the things (which I enforce).
It is because they do not know these,
that men do not know me.

70. 3.  They who know me are few,
and I am on that account (the more) to be prized.
It is thus that the sage wears (a poor garb of) hair cloth,
while he carries his (signet of) jade in his bosom.

71. 1.  To know and yet (think) we do not know is the highest (attainment); not to know (and yet think) we do know is a disease.


Saying 100:
He said Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, give to me what belongs to me, give to God what belongs to God
He knows It is by avoiding their ordinary life that they fear what they ought to fear
They showed Jesus a gold coin and said to him, "Those who belong to Caesar demand tribute from us."

He said to them, "Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, give to God what belongs to God, and give to me what belongs to me."

71. 2.  It is simply by being pained at (the thought of) having this disease that we are preserved from it.
The sage has not the disease.
He knows the pain that would be inseparable from it,
 and therefore he does not have it.

72. 1.  When the people do not fear what they ought to fear,
that which is their great dread will come on them.

72.
2.  Let them not thoughtlessly indulge themselves in their ordinary life; let them not act as if weary of what that life depends on.

72. 3.  It is by avoiding such indulgence that such weariness does not arise.


Saying 101:
Hate father and mother
Jesus saidbecome my disciple
Heaven's anger smites. The Sage knows these things
Jesus said, "Whoever doesn't hate their [father] and mother as I do can't become my [disciple], and whoever [doesn't] love their [father] and mother as I do can't become my [disciple]. For my mother […], but [my] true [Mother] gave me Life." 72. 4.  Therefore the sage knows (these things) of himself,
but does not parade (his knowledge);
loves, but does not (appear to set a) value on, himself.
And thus he puts the latter alternative away and makes choice of the former.

73. 1.  He whose boldness appears in his daring (to do wrong,
in defiance of the laws) is put to death;
he whose boldness appears in his not daring (to do so) lives on.
Of these two cases the one appears to be advantageous,
and the other to be injurious. But

 When Heaven's anger smites a man,
 Who the cause shall truly scan?


Saying 102: 
Jesus said
,
"It is 
a feeding trough for cattle"
The sage reveals "It is the way of Heaven"
Jesus said, "How awful for the Pharisees who are like a dog sleeping in a feeding trough for cattle, because the dog doesn't eat, and [doesn't let] the cattle eat either."

(C.f. "The scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward (the corn)," 1 Timothy 5:18. "Pray that the Lord will send workers to the harvest," Saying 73.)
On this account the sage feels a difficulty
(as to what to do in the former case).

73. 2.
It is the way of Heaven not to strive,
and yet it skilfully overcomes; not to speak,
and yet it is skilful in obtaining a reply;
does not call, and yet men come to it of themselves.
Its demonstrations are quiet,
and yet its plans are skilful and effective.
The meshes of the net of Heaven are large;
far apart, but letting nothing escape.


Saying 103: 
Jesus said
, "Blessed is the one who knows where the bandits are going to enter
Do not fear death. The Great Carpenter is always the One in the room who presides over the infliction of death
Jesus said, "Blessed is the one who knows where the bandits are going to enter. [They can] get up to assemble their defenses and be prepared to defend themselves before they arrive."

(C.f. Concerning Jesus it was asked, "Is not this the carpenter, [the builder] the son of Mary," Mark 6:3.)
74. 1.  The people do not fear death; to what purpose is it to (try to) frighten them with death? If the people were always in awe of death, and I could always seize those who do wrong, and put them to death, who would dare to do wrong?

74. 2.  There is always One who presides over the infliction of death. He who would inflict death in the room of him who so presides over it may be described as hewing wood instead of a great carpenter. Seldom is it that he who undertakes the hewing, instead of the great carpenter, does not cut his own hands!


Saying 104:
Let them fast
and pray
People suffer from famine so leave the subject of living
They said to [Jesus], "Come, let's pray and fast today."

Jesus said, "What have I done wrong? Have I failed?

"Rather, when the groom leaves the bridal chamber, then let them fast and pray."
75. 1.  The people suffer from famine because of the multitude of taxes consumed by their superiors.
It is through this that they suffer famine.

75. 2.  The people are difficult to govern because of the (excessive) agency of their superiors (in governing them).
It is through this that they are difficult to govern.

75. 3.  The people make light of dying because of the greatness of their labours in seeking for the means of living. It is this which makes them think light of dying.
Thus it is that to leave the subject of living altogether out of view is better than to set a high value on it.


Saying 105:
Knowing
Father and Mother
The concomitants: Firmness and strength and Softness and weakness
Jesus said, " Whoever knows their father and mother will be called a bastard." 76. 1.  Man at his birth is supple and weak; at his death, firm and strong. (So it is with) all things.
Trees and plants, in their early growth, are soft and brittle;
at their death, dry and withered.

76. 2.  Thus it is that firmness and strength are the  concomitants of death; softness and weakness, the concomitants of life.


Saying 106:
Make the two into one
A tree which is strong... invites the feller
Jesus said, "When you make the two into one, you'll become Children of Humanity, and if you say 'Mountain, go away!', it'll go." 76. 3.  Hence he who (relies on) the strength of his forces does not conquer; and a tree which is strong will fill the out-stretched arms, (and thereby invites the feller.)

76. 4.  Therefore the place of what is firm and strong is below, and that of what is soft and weak is above.


Saying 107: 
Jesus said
, "The kingdom can be compared to a shepherd who had a hundred sheep.
May not the Way (or Tao) of Heaven be compared to
he who is in possession of the Tao

&
he who can take his own superabundance and therewith serve all under heaven
Jesus said, "The kingdom can be compared to a shepherd who had a hundred sheep. The largest one strayed. He left the ninety-nine and looked for that one until he found it. Having gone through the trouble, he said to the sheep: 'I love you more than the ninety-nine.'"

(C.f.
The method of bending a bow. See Tao 77:1 and Saying 47.)
77. 1.  May not the Way (or Tao) of Heaven be compared to the (method of) bending a bow?
The (part of the bow) which was high is brought low, and what was low is raised up.  (So Heaven) diminishes where there is superabundance, and supplements where there is deficiency.

77. 2.  It is the Way of Heaven to diminish superabundance, and to supplement deficiency.
It is not so with the way of man.
He takes away from those who have not enough to add to his own superabundance.

77. 3.  Who can take his own superabundance and therewith serve all under heaven?
Only he who is in possession of the Tao!


Saying 108:
Whoever
drinks from my mouth
will become like me
Water changes things that are firm and strong
Jesus said, "Whoever drinks from my mouth will become like me, and I myself will become like them; then, what's hidden will be revealed to them."
77. 4.  Therefore the (ruling) sage acts without claiming the results as his; he achieves his merit and does not rest (arrogantly) in it:
—he does not wish to display his superiority.

78. 1.  There is nothing in the world more soft and weak than water, and yet for attacking things that are firm and strong there is nothing that can take precedence of it;
—for there is nothing (so effectual) for which it can be changed.


Saying 109:
Jesus saidThey didn't know about the hidden treasure
A sage has saidEvery one in the world knows true words can seem paradoxical
Jesus said, "The kingdom can be compared to someone who had a treasure [hidden] in their field.

[They] didn't know about it. After they died, they left it to their son. The son didn't know it either. He took the field and sold it.

"The buyer plowed the field, found the treasure, and began to loan money at interest to whomever they wanted."
78. 2. Every one in the world knows that the soft overcomes the hard, and the weak the strong,
but no one is able to carry it out in practice.

78. 3.
 Therefore a sage has said,
 'He who accepts his state's reproach,
 Is hailed therefore its altars' lord;
 To him who bears men's direful woes
 They all the name of King accord.'

78. 4.  Words that are strictly true seem to be paradoxical.

79. 1.  When a reconciliation is effected (between two parties) after a great animosity, there is sure to be a grudge remaining (in the mind of the one who was wrong).
And how can this be beneficial (to the other)?


Saying 110:
Whoever has found 
should renounce
I would make the people, while looking on death
Jesus said, "Whoever has found the world and become rich should renounce the world." 79. 2.  Therefore (to guard against this),
the sage keeps the left-hand portion of the record of the engagement, and does not insist on the (speedy) fulfilment of it by the other party.

(So), he who has the attributes (of the Tao) regards (only) the conditions of the engagement, while he who has not those attributes regards only the conditions favourable to himself.


Saying 111:
Those Who are Worthy
 
won't see death
I would make the people, while looking on death
Jesus said, "The heavens and the earth will roll up in front of you, and whoever lives from the Living One won't see (or
experience
) death."

Doesn't Jesus say, "Whoever finds themselves, of them the world isn't worthy"?
79. 3.  In the Way of Heaven, there is no partiality of love; it is always on the side of the good man.

80. 1.  In a little state with a small population,
I would so order it, that, though there were individuals with the abilities of ten or a hundred men, there should be no employment of them;
I would make the people,
while looking on death as a grievous thing,
yet not remove elsewhere (to avoid it).


Saying 112:
Flesh
and Soul
I would make the people, while looking on death
Jesus said, "How awful for the flesh that depends on the soul. How awful for the soul that depends on the flesh." 80. 2.  Though they had boats and carriages,
they should have no occasion to ride in them;
though they had buff coats and sharp weapons,
they should have no occasion to don or use them.


Saying 113:
When will the kingdom come
?
Make the people return
His disciples said to him, "When will the kingdom come?"

"It won't come by looking for it. They won't say, 'Look over here!' or 'Look over there!' Rather, the Father's kingdom is already spread out over the earth, and people don't see it."

(C.f.
"What you're looking for has already come, but you don't know it," Saying 51.)
80. 3.  I would make the people return to the use of knotted cords (instead of the written characters).

80. 4.  They should think
their (coarse) food sweet;
their (plain) clothes beautiful;
their (poor) dwellings places of rest;
and their common (simple) ways sources of enjoyment.

80. 5.  There should be a neighbouring state within sight,
and the voices of the fowls and dogs should be heard all the way from it to us,


Saying 114:
Jesus said, "I shall draw her to make her complete
The sage he does not strive... the more that he gives the more he has
Simon Peter said to them, "Mary should leave us, because women aren't worthy of life."

Jesus said, "Look, I shall draw her to make her male, so that she too may become a living spirit like you males. For every female who makes herself male will enter into the kingdom of heaven.

(C.f. Jesus said, "When you make the two into one, and make...  the male and the female a single one (and the same) so that the male won't be male nor the female female... then you'll enter the kingdom," Saying 22.)
80.5 Continued.
but I would make the people to old age,
even to death, not have any intercourse with it.

81. 1.  Sincere words are not fine; fine words are not sincere.
Those who are skilled (in the Tao) do not dispute (about it);
the disputatious are not skilled in it.
Those who know (the Tao) are not extensively learned;
the extensively learned do not know it.

81. 2.  The sage does not accumulate (for himself).
The more that he expends for others, the more does he possess of his own; the more that he gives to others, the more does he have himself.

81. 3.  With all the sharpness of the Way of Heaven, it injures not; with all the doing in the way of the sage he does not strive.

(C.f.  "He that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit,"
a living spirit, 1 Corinthians 6:17.)



Public domain translations were used in this side by side comparison for both Thomas and The Tao.

"The Gospel of Thomas" is based on the translation by Mark M. Mattison      www.gospels.net/thomas

"The Tao Teh King" is
translated by James Legge      www.gutenberg.org/files/216/216-h/216-h.htm

A Public Domain Printable PDF of The Tao and Thomas is available.



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