Taoteching 41

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The sage allows herself to be conformed by the Nameless Way. The ordinary people seek the Nameless Way. The inferior man laughs at it. But seriousness by itself is not enough to be considered the eternal Nameless Way.

Advancing in the Nameless Way seems like retreat. Proclaiming one's honesty seems a lie. Great talent takes much practice, but to practice in the public view is folly. The eternal Nameless Way is hidden, therefore it is ideal for gradually attaining perfection. The woman of wisdom is an incrementalist.

He who denies the Nameless Way considers man vile and always falling short of his ideal standards. She who embraces the Nameless Way extols her sisters over all standards, because when women do go astray it is induced by the repression of those very same standards.

He who denies the Nameless Way appoints himself judge and demands to see good in others. She who embraces the Nameless Way does good in this moment, and does not live for yesterday or for tomorrow.

He who denies the Nameless Way retaliates for suffering an indignity by committing another indignity. She who embraces the Nameless Way indulges in the noblest vengeance: forgiveness.

He who denies the Nameless Way can do what he wills to do, but he cannot determine what he wills. She who embraces the Nameless Way makes her own awareness of injustice the determinant of her actions.

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