Lao Tzu

c.604 - 531 B.C.

A Quote by Lao Tzu on tao, truth, strength, and service

Nothing in the world
is as soft and yielding as water.
Yet for dissolving the hard and inflexible,
nothing can surpass it.

The soft overcomes the hard;
the gentle overcomes the rigid.
Everyone knows this is true,
but few can put it into practice.

Therefore the Master remains
serene in the midst of sorrow.
Evil cannot enter his heart.
Because he has given up helping,
he is people's greatest help.

True words seem paradoxical.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on tao, mastery, leadership, and competition

All streams flow to the sea
because it is lower than they are.
Humility gives it its power.

If you want to govern the people,
you must place yourself below them.
If you want to lead the people,
you must learn how to follow them.

The Master is above the people,
and no one feels oppressed.
She goes ahead of the people,
and no one feels manipulated.
The whole world is grateful to her.
Because she competes with no one,
no one can compete with her.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on tao, simplicity, patience, compassion, action, and thoughts

Some say that my teaching is nonsense.
Others call it lofty but impractical.
But to those who have looked inside themselves,
this nonsense makes perfect sense.
And to those who put it into practice,
this loftiness has roots that go deep.

I have just three things to teach:
simplicity, patience, compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and in thoughts,
you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
you reconcile all beings in the world.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on tao, excellence, competition, and harmony

The best athlete
wants his opponent at his best.
The best general
enters the mind of his enemy.
The best businessman
serves the communal good.
The best leader
follows the will of the people.

All of the embody
the virtue of non-competition.
Not that they don't love to compete,
but they do it in the spirit of play.
In this they are like children
and in harmony with the Tao.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on tao, enemy, victory, forces, and opposition

The generals have a saying:
"Rather than make the first move
it is better to wait and see.
Rather than advance an inch
it is better to retreat a yard."

This is called
going forward without advancing,
pushing back without using weapons.

There is no greater misfortune
than underestimating your enemy.
Underestimating your enemy
means thinking that he is evil.
Thus you destroy your three treasures
and become an enemy yourself.

When two great forces oppose each other,
the victory will go
to the one that knows how to yield.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on teachings, tao, heart, and understanding

My teachings are easy to understand
and easy to put into practice.
Yet your intellect will never grasp them,
and if you try to practice them, you'll fail.

My teachings are older than the world.
How can you grasp their meaning?

If you want to know me,
look inside your heart.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on tao, knowing, disease, mastery, and knowledge

Not-knowing is true knowledge.
Presuming to know is a disease.
First realize that you are sick;
then you can move toward health.

The Master is her own physician.
She has healed herself of all knowing.
Thus she is truly whole.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on awe, tao, religion, mastery, and trust

When they lose their sense of awe,
people turn to religion.
When they no longer trust themselves,
they begin to depend upon authority.

Therefore the Master steps back
so that people won't be confused.
He teaches without a teaching,
so that people will have nothing to learn.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on tao, greatness, and mastery

Act without doing;
work without effort.
Think of the small as large
and the few as many.
Confront the difficult
while it is still easy;
accomplish the great task
by a series of small acts.

The Master never reaches for the great;
thus she achieves greatness.
When she runs into a difficulty,
she stops and gives herself to it.
She doesn't cling to her own comfort;
thus problems are no problem for her.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

A Quote by Lao Tzu on tao, mastery, desire, and care

What is rooted is easy to nourish.
What is recent is easy to correct.
What is brittle is easy to break.
What is small is easy to scatter.

Prevent trouble before it arises.
Put things in order before they exist.
The giant pine tree
grows from a tiny sprout.
The journey of a thousand miles
starts from beneath your feet.

Rushing into action, you fail.
Trying to grasp things, you lose them.
Forcing a project to completion,
you ruin what was almost ripe.

Therefore the Master takes action
by letting things take their course.
He remains as calm
at the end as at the beginning.
He has nothing,
thus has nothing to lose.
What he desires is non-desire;
what he learns is to unlearn.
He simply reminds people
of who they have always been.
He cares about nothing but the Tao.
Thus he can care for all things.

Lao Tzu (c.604 - 531 B.C.)

Source: Tao Te Ching

Contributed by: Gaia Team

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