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Essays | ____/// luminoushadow |||______
May200914

“The nameless and what is named”
Dao de jing

Wawy-making (dao) that can be put into words is not really way-making,
And naming (ming) that can assign fixed reference to things is not really naming.

The nameless (wuming) is the fetal beginnings of everything that is happening (wanwu),
While that which is named is their mother.

Thus, to be really objectless in one’s desires (wuyyu) is how one observes the mysteries of all things,
While really having desires is how one observes their boundaries.

These two– the nameless and what is named –emerge from the same source yet are referred to differently.

Together they are called obscure.
The obscurest of the obscure,
They are the swining gateway of manifold mysteries.

May200914

“Nonimpositional rulership”
Dao de jing

With the most excellent rulers, their subjects only know that they
are there,
The next best are the rulers they love and praise,
Next are the rulers they hold in awe,
And the worst are the rulers they disparage…
With all things accomplished and the work complete
The common people say, “We are spontaneously like this.”

May200914

“Noncoerciveness”
Dao de jing

Not promoting those of superior character
Will save the common people from becoming contentious.
Not prizing property that is hard to come by
Will save them from becoming thieves.
Not making a show of what might be desired
Will save them from becoming disgruntled.

It is for this reason that in the proper governing by the sages:

They empty the hearts-and-minds of the people and fill their stomachs,
They weaken their aspirations and strengthen their bones,
Ever teaching the common people to be unprincipled in their knowing
And objectless in their desires.
They keep the hawkers of knowledge at bay.
It is simply in doing things noncoercively
That everything is governed properly.