XXV – Man models himself on earth

There is a thing confusedly formed

Born before heaven and earth.

Silent and void

It stands alone and does not change,

Goes round and does not weary.

It is capable of being the mother of the world.

I know not its name

So I style it ‘the way’.

I give it the makeshift name of ‘the great’.

Being great, it is further described as receding,

Receding, it is described as far away,

Being far away, it is described as turning back.

Hence the way is great; heaven is great; earth is great; and the king is also great. Within the realm there are four things that are great, and the king counts as one.

Man models himself on earth,

Earth on heaven,

Heaven on the way

And the way on that which is naturally so.

In the stars man finds gods; in the earth he finds himself. He finds himself in trees, rivers, mountains and seas; in wind but not in the sun, in rain but not lightening. Man is made of earth and not light; man breathes and the stars wink. But the waters can glisten and the mountains can host gods; trees have spirits; men and women smile; and so the earth reaches up to the heavens. The way is nimble like a sparrow.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s