Twenty-Seventh Chapter: Tao-te Ching
A wise traveler leaves no trace.
A speaker of truth has no flaws.
Generosity keeps no account.
The door he shuts needs no bolts, yet cannot be opened.
The knot he ties needs no rope, yet cannot be untied.
Like the sage help all beings impartially, rejecting no one.
Waste no opportunity, abandon no one.
This is called following the Way.
The good man is the bad man’s teacher.
The bad is the good man’s job.
If the teacher is not respected,
And the student not cared for,
Confusion will arise, however clever one is.
This is the great mystery.
As I understand it:
The sage’s complete trust in himself and in his inner Tao changes his outlook on life. He lives by an inner light. He speaks the truth, leaves no tracks behind and is always generous. His possessions are not locked yet he feels safe. He doesn’t force his love yet he is loved. He helps everyone who needs his help and does not ignore an opportunity to help others.
If you consider yourself a good person, become the teacher of the person you consider bad. And if you think you are bad make the person you think is good your teacher. Once you have become a teacher or a student take your responsibility seriously. Honor your teacher. Take care of your student. None of us is an island. We are not merely dependent but we are interdependent.
We are One. Understand this concept. Don’t try to be clever and participate in creating confusion and chaos. This is the mystery and yet not such a great secret!
The Way of Lao Tzu, tr. Wing-Tsit Chan, The Bobbs-Merrill Company, Inc. 1963.
Dyer, Wayne W., Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life: Living the Wisdom of Tao. Hay House, Inc. 2007.