This blog is an interpretation of the Tao te Ching "Tao Virtue Book" which is attributed to Laozi "Lao Tze" a Chinese philosopher who lived circa 600 b.c.

Please remember always that this is the description of the Tao and not the experience of the living Tao. Hopefully, this blog will not serve as analysis or commentary but as a window into the Tao. You are encouraged to disagree with this interpretation, involve yourself in self-study, and ultimately leave all concepts behind and so experience the living Tao.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Understanding the Tao te Ching Chapter 23: How to Attract Good People

For this chapter we will use Susuki's translation.


To be taciturn is the natural way. A hurricane: does not outlast the morning. A cloudburst does not outlast the day. Who causes these events but heaven and earth? If even heaven and earth cannot be unremitting, will not man be much less so?

Those who pursue their business in Reason, men of Reason, associate in Reason. Those who pursue their business in virtue associate in virtue. Those who pursue their business in ill luck associate in ill luck. When men associate in Reason, Reason makes them glad to find companions.

When men associate in virtue, virtue makes them glad to find companions. When men associate in ill luck, ill luck makes them glad to find companions. "If your faith is insufficient, verily shall ye receive no faith."

Tao te Ching Chapter 23


In one of the funniest moments in the Tao te Ching, the author here offers us a warning before making his point.  A hurricane does not last very long and neither do people who talk too much.  This message and others like it point to the realization that people deeply immersed in the Tao seldom speak of it.  This is why even in China, there are so few teachers of the Tao.  The natural way must be experienced not taught and those who teach generally are not advanced in their study.

The message that follows may be interpreted as like attracts like.  If you are on the path, you will find others who are also on the path.  If you fall from the path, you will meet others who are off the path.  
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