Compiled by Michael P. Garofalo, Green Way Research, Valley Spirit Center, Gushen Grove Notebooks, Red Bluff, California
Chapter 29 Chapter 31 Index to All the Chapters Taoism Cloud Hands Blog
English Chinese Spanish
English and Chinese (Wade-Giles) Terms: Abandon Excess, Avoid Daring, Strike Only of Necessity, Be Wary of War, Maturity, Violence, Destruction or Misfortune (hsiung), Crops or Harvest (nien), Battle, The Way (Dao), Peace, Old, Grow or Spring Up (shêng), Worn, Assist or Aid (tso), Usual (hao), General, Minister, Actions or Affairs (shih), Arms and Weapons (ping), Dominate or Overpower (ch'iang), War or Battle (chün), Government, Force of Arms, Return and Rebound (huan), Necessity, Decay or Grow Old (lao), Mastery, Force or Strength (ch'iang), Arrogance, Heaven (tien), Thorns, Resolve, Army, Reconciliation, Briars or Brambles (ching), Encampment or Stop (ch'u), Brag or Boast (ching), Resolute (kuo), Master and Ruler (chu), Force (ch'iang), Reason, Resolute (kuo), End or Finish (yi), Flourish or Full-Grown (chuang), Misfortune or Calamity (hsiung), Take or Seize (ch'ü), Course of Life or Universe (Tao), Decay or Age (lao), Death, Proud or Arrogant (chiao), Poverty, Place or Position or Status (so), A Caveat Against Violence, End or Finish (yi), 儉武
Términos en Español: Guerra, Madurez, Violencia, Destrucción, Batalla, Paz, Viejo, Usado, General, Ministro, Gobierno, Armas, Necesidad, Maestría, Arrogancia, Campamento, Florcer, Cultivos, Cosecha, Acabado, Crecer, Resuelto, Zarza, Armas, Negocios, Guerra, Espinas, Gobernante, Fuerza, Reconciliación, Razón, Alardear, Dominar, Desgracia, Muerte, Pobreza, Camino, Cielo, Posición, Estatus, Infortunio, Resulto, Tome, Agarrotamiento, Decaimiento, Edad, Final.
"He who would assist a lord of men in harmony with the
Tao will not assert his mastery in the kingdom by force of arms.
Such a course is sure to meet with its proper return.
Wherever a host is stationed, briars and thorns spring up.
In the sequence of great armies there are sure to be bad years.
A skilful commander strikes a decisive blow, and stops.
He does not dare by continuing his operations to assert and complete his mastery.
He will strike the blow, but will be on his guard against being vain or boastful or arrogant in consequence of it.
He strikes it as a matter of necessity; he strikes it, but not from a wish for mastery.
When things have attained their strong maturity they become old.
This may be said to be not in accordance with the Tao.
What is not in accordance with the Tao soon comes to an end."
- Translated by James Legge, 1891, Chapter 30
"He who in harmony with the Tao would aid a ruler of men
Will not with warlike armaments strengthen the realm again,
But his manner of work, if requital came, would bring good payment then.
Wherever a martial host is camped, there thorns and briars grow,
And the track of mighty armies years of ruined harvests show;
The good commander is resolute to strike the decisive blow,
Then stops, for he does not dare complete and take by mastery;
Vain and boastful and arrogant the leader must not be,
But resolute, not violent, and from necessity.
When things have reached their highest pitch they became decrepit and old,
But this is not in accord with the Tao which Heaven and Earth enfold,
And what is not in accord, will
pass away like a tale that is told."
- Translated by Isaac Winter Heysinger, 1903, Chapter 30
Ripening Peaches: Taoist Studies and Practices By Mike Garofalo
"He who with Reason assists the master of mankind will
not with arms strengthen the empire.
His methods invite requital.
Where armies are quartered briars and thorns grow.
Great wars unfailingly are followed by famines.
A good man acts resolutely and then stops.
He ventures not to take by force.
Be resolute but not boastful; resolute but not haughty;
resolute but not arrogant; resolute because you cannot avoid it; resolute but not violent.
Things thrive and then grow old.
This is called un-Reason.
Un-Reason soon ceases."
- Translated by Daisetsu Teitaro Suzuki and Paul Carus, 1913, Chapter 30
Cloud Hands Blog
"He who assists a ruler of men with Tao does not force the world with arms.
He aims only at carrying out relief, and does not venture to force his power on others.
When relief is done he will not be assuming,
He will not be boastful, he will not be proud;
And he will think that he was obliged to do it.
So it comes that relief is done without resorting to force.
When things come to the summit of their vigour, they begin to grow old.
This is against Tao.
What is against Tao will soon come to an end."
- Translated by Ch'u Ta-Kao, 1904, Chapter 10
Tao Te Ching Translated by Stephen Addiss and Stanley Lombardo
Lao Tzu: Tao Te Ching Translated by John C. WuLao-Tzu and the Tao-Te-Ching Translated by Livia Kohn
Dao De Jing: The Book of the Way Translated by Moss Roberts
- Chinese characters, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 30
yi tao tso jên chu chê, pu yi ping ch'iang
ch'i shih hao huan.
shih chih so ch'u, ching chi shêng yen.
ta chün chih hou, pi yu hsiung nien
shan chê kuo erh yi.
pu kan yi ch'ü ch'iang.
kuo erh wu ching.
kuo erh wu fa.
kuo erh wu chiao.
kuo erh pu tê yi.
kuo erh wu ch'iang.
wu chuang tsê lao.
shih wei pu tao.
pu tao tsao yi.
- Wade-Giles Romanization, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 30
yi dao zuo ren zhu zhe, bu yi bing qiang tian xia. qi shi hao huan. shi zhi suo chu, jing ji sheng yan. da jun zhi hou, bi you xiong nian. shan you guo er yi. Sbu gan yi qu qiang. guo er wu jin, guo er wu fa, guo er wu jiao. guo er bu de yi. guo er wu qiang. wu zhuang ze lao. shi wei bu dao. bu dao zao yi. - Pinyin Romanization, Daodejing, Chapter 30
Tao Te Ching in Chinese characters, Pinyin Romanization, English and German by Dr. Hilmar Alquiros.
Laozi Daodejing: Chapters with Chinese characters, seal script, detailed word by word concordance, Pinyin (tone#), German, French and English.
Dao De Jing Wade-Giles Concordance by Nina, Dao is Open
Dao De Jing English and Wade-Giles Concordance by Mike Garofalo
Tao Te Ching: The Definitive Edition Chinese characters, Wade-Giles Romanization, and a list of meanings for each character by Jonathan Star
Chinese Characters, Wade-Giles and Pinyin Romanizations, and 16 English Translations for Each Chapter of the Daodejing by Mike Garofalo.
Tao Te Ching in Chinese characters, Pinyin and Wade Giles Romanization spellings, English; a word for word translation of the Guodian Laozi Dao De Jing Version.
Lao Zi's Dao De Jing: A Matrix Translation with Chinese Text by Bradford Hatcher.
"Those who rule in accordance with Tao
do not use force against the world
For that which is forced is likely to return―
Where armies settle
Nature offers nothing but briars and thorns
After a great battle has been fought
the land is cursed, the crops fail,
the Earth lies stripped of its motherhood
A knower of the Truth does what is called for
He uses his strength but does not force things
In the same way
complete your task
seek no reward
make no claims
fully choose to do what you must do
This is to live without forcing
to overcome without conquering
Things that gain a place by force
will flourish for a time
but then fade away
They are not in keeping with Tao
Whatever is not in keeping with Tao
will come to an early end."
- Translated by Jonathan Star, 2001, Chapter 30
"Whoever advises a leader according to the Way opposes conquest by force of arms. The use of force tends to rebound. Where armies march, thorns and brambles grow. Whenever a great army is formed, scarcity and famine follow. The skillful achieve their purposes and stop. They dare not rely on force. They achieve their purposes, but do not glory in them. They achieve their purposes, but do not celebrate them. They achieve their purposes, but do not take pride in them. They achieve their purposes, but without violence. Things reach their prime and then decline. Violence is contrary to the Way. Whatever is contrary to the Way will soon perish." - Translated by S. Beck, 1996, Chapter 30
"He who by dao purposes to help a ruler of men, will oppose most conquest by force of arms: such things are wont to rebound. Where armies are, thorns and brambles can grow. The raising of a great host could be followed by a year of dearth. Therefore a good general effects his purpose and next stops; for he dares not rely upon the strength of arms, he doesn't take further advantage of a victory. He fulfils his purpose and does hardly glory in things he has done; effects his purpose and doesn't boast of a thing he accomplished. Fulfils an ignoble purpose, but takes no pride in something he did well. Fulfils his purpose as some perhaps regrettable necessity - does it as a step that could hardly be averted and avoided. So he effects his purpose, but hardly loves violence. Why? Things age after reaching their prime. What has a time of vigor and conquest also has its time of decay. After things reach their prime, they begin to grow old, which means being contrary to Dao. Furthermore, morbid violence and violence in excess could be against Dao. He who is against the Dao perishes young. Whatever is contrary to Dao will soon perish. What's against Dao will hardly survive." - Interpolated by Tormod Byrn, 1997, Chapter 30
"When leading by the way of the Tao, abominate the use of force, for it causes resistance, and loss of strength, showing the Tao has not been followed well. Achieve results but not through violence, for it is against the natural way, and damages both others' and one's own true self. The harvest is destroyed in the wake of a great war, and weeds grow in the fields in the wake of the army. The wise leader achieves results, but does not glory in them; is not proud of his victories, and does not boast of them. He knows that boasting is not the natural way, and that he who goes against that way, will fail in his endeavours." - Translated by Stan Rosenthal, 1984, Chapter 30
is an ancient way to lead
That just allows and does not force
For what goes out will come around
And violence will lead to wars
one who sees completes a task
And stops when it is done
Seeing all is on its own
And not controlled by anyone
seer sees that all is well
And does not need to please
Just gives acceptance everywhere
Puts everyone at ease"
- Interpolated by Jim Clatfelder, 2000, Chapter 30
"Those who use Tao in
assisting their Sovereign do not employ soldiers to force the
The methods of government they adopt are such as have a tendency to react upon themselves.
Where garrisons are quartered, briars and thorns spring up, and the the land is deserted by the people.
Disastrous years inevitably follow in the wake of great armies.
Wise rulers act with decision, and nothing more.
They do not venture to use overbearing measures.
They are decided without self-conceit, or boasting, or pride.
They are decided in spite of themselves, and without presuming on brute force.
After a man has arrived at the prime of his strength, he begins to age.
This is attributable to his not possessing the Tao.
Those who do not possess Tao die before their time."
- Translated by Frederic H. Balfour, 1884, Chapter 30
"When one who is an advisor to a person who wields power
expresses Dao, he will recommend no need to use offensive
weapons forcefully in the world.
That method shows that if you are endearing to others, they will treat you the same way.
Where an army finds a place to encamp, thistles and thorns are all that will grow there.
One who is kind will get results and then stop.
He doesn’t try to grab it all forcefully.
Getting results, and yet he won’t destroy anything in the process.
Getting results, and yet he won’t become arrogant.
Getting results, and yet he won’t lord it over others.
Getting results, and yet he won’t stop and bask in the glory of it.
This is correctly described as getting results without using force.
That method shows that if you are endearing to others, everyone will be increased.
A living thing may pretend to be stronger than they actually
are, then they will age quickly.
This is correctly refered to as not being like Dao.
What is not like Dao will soon cease."
- Translated by Nina Correa, 2005, Chapter 30
Walking the Way: 81 Zen Encounters with the Tao Te Ching by Robert Meikyo Rosenbaum
The Tao of Zen by Ray Grigg
Tao Te Ching: Zen Teachings on the Taoist Classic by Takuan Soho
"He who would help a Ruler of men by Tao
Does not take soldiers to give strength to the kingdom.
His service is well rewarded.
Where troops dwell, there grow thorns and briers.
After great wars, there follow bad years.
He who loves, bears fruit unceasingly,
He does not dare to conquer by strength.
He bears fruit, but not with assertiveness,
He bears fruit, but not with boastfulness,
He bears fruit, but not with meanness,
He bears fruit, but not to obtain it for himself,
He bears fruit, but not to shew his strength.
Man is great and strong, then he is old,
In this he is not of Tao.
If he is not of Tao
He will quickly perish."
- Translated by Isabella Mears, 1916, Chapter 30
"He who uses Tao to guide rulers
Does not force beneath-heaven with arms.
Such things recoil on their users.
Where armies are
Briars and brambles grow.
Bad harvests follow big wars.
Be firm and that is all:
Dare not rely on force
Be firm but not haughty,
Firm but not boastful,
Firm but not proud:
Firm when necessary,
Firm but non-violent.
Things that flourish
Fall into decay.
This is not-Tao,
And what is not-Tao soon ends."
- Translated by Herrymoon Maurer, 1985, Chapter 30
Further Teachings of Lao-Tzu: Understanding the Mysteries (Wen Tzu) By Thomas Cleary
The Lunar Tao: Meditations in Harmony with the Seasons By Deng Ming-DaoAwakening to the Tao By Lui I-Ming (1780) and translated by Thomas Cleary
Zhuangzi: The Essential Writings with Selections from Traditional Commentaries Translation and commentary by Brook ZiporynThe Inner Chapters of Chuang Tzu (Zhuangzi) Translated by A. C. Graham
"When one uses the Tao in assisting his
sovereign, he will not employ arms to coerce the state.
Such methods easily react.
When military camps are established.
Briers and thorns flourish.
When great armies have moved through the land calamities are sure to follow.
The capable are determined, but no more.
They will not venture to compel; determined, but not conceited;
determined, but not boastful; determined, but not arrogant;
determined because it cannot be helped; determined, but not forceful.
When things reach their prime, they begin to age.
This cannot be said to be the Tao.
What is Not the Tao soon ends."
- Translated by Spurgeon C. Medhurst, 1905, Chapter 30
"If you would assist leaders of people
by way of the Tao,
you will oppose the use of armed force to overpower
who use weapons will be harmed by them.
Where troops have camped only thorn bushes grow.
Bad harvests follow in the wake of a great army.
skillful person strikes the blow and stops,
without taking advantage of victory.
Bring it to a conclusion but do not be vain.
Bring it to a conclusion but do not be boastful.
Bring it to a conclusion but do not be arrogant.
Bring it to a conclusion but only when there is no choice.
Bring it to a conclusion but without violence.
force is rlsed, youthful strength decays.
This is not the way of Tao.
And that which goes against the Tao
will quickly pass away."
- Translated by Tolbert McCarroll, 1982, Chapter 30
Tao Te Ching: An Illustrated Journey Translated by Stephen Mitchell
Tao Te Ching Translated by David Hinton
The Book of Tao: Tao Te Ching - The Tao and Its Characteristics Translated by James Legge
Taoism: Growth of a Religion By Isabelle Robinet
Zhuangzi: Basic Writings Translated by Burton Watson
Zhuangzi Speaks: The Music of Nature An illustrated comic by Chih-chung Ts'ai
"He who relied on the Tao to aid a ruler of men
Would not seek to conquer with weapons.
The man of Tao holds back from such instruments of recoiling violence.
For where armies have camped there spring up thistles and thorns;
And in the wake of marching armies follow years of drought.
Having achieved his aim, the good commander stops;
He does not venture to follow up his advantages with greater force.
He achieves his aim, but does not plume himself.
He achieves his aim, but is not boastful.
He achieves his aim but is not proud of what he has done.
He achieves his aim by means which could not be avoided.
He achieves his aim without violence.
For it is when creatures reach the climax of their strength that they start to grow old;
Thus violence runs counter to the Tao,
And what runs counter to the Tao is soon spent."
- Translated by Herman Old, 1946, Chapter 30
"A ruler faithful to Tao will not send the army to a foreign
This would incur calamity onto him, first of all.
The land where an army passed becomes desolated.
After war, lean years come.
A wise commander is never bellicose.
A wise warrior never gets angry.
He who can defeat the enemy does not attack.
He who achieved victory stops and does not do violence to the defeated enemies.
The victorious does not praise himself.
He wins, but does not feel proud.
He does not like to wage wars.
He wins because he is forced to fight.
Though he wins, he is not bellicose.
If man in the prime of life begins to weaken and gets ill?
This happens only because he has lived not in the harmony with Tao.
The life of such a person ends before a due time."
- Translated by Mikhail Nikolenko, Chapter 30
Language Versions of the Tao Te Ching (Daodejing)
Tao Te Ching en Español
Lao Tsé Tao Te Ching Traducido al español por Anton Teplyy
Tao Te Ching Traducido por Stephen Mitchell, versión española
Tao Te Ching Traducido al español por el Padre Carmelo Elorduy
Lao Tzu-The Eternal Tao Te Ching Traducido al español por Yuanxiang Xu y Yongjian Yin
Ripening Peaches: Taoist Studies and Practices By Mike Garofalo Maduración Duraznos: Estudios y Prácticas Taoístas por Mike Garofalo
Tao Te Ching Traducido al español por William Scott Wilson.
Lao Tzu - Tao Te Ching Traducido al español por Javier Cruz
Tao te king Translated by John C. H. Wu, , versión española
Daodejing Español, Inglés, y Chino Versiones Lingüísticas de la Daodejing
"Quien sabe guiar al gobernante en el
sendero del Tao no intenta dominar el mundo mediante la fuerza de
Está en la naturaleza de las armas militares volverse contra quienes las manejan.
Donde acampan ejércitos, crecen zarzas y espinos.
A una gran guerra, invariablemente suceden malos años.
Lo que quieres es proteger eficazmente tu propio estado, pero no pretender tu propia expansión.
Cuando has alcanzado tu propósito, no debes exhibir tu trifuno, ni jactarte de tu capacidad, ni sentirte orgulloso;
más bien debes lamentar no haber sido capaz de impedir la guerra.
No debes pensar nunca en conquistar a los demás por la fuerza.
Pues expandirse excessivamente es precipitar el decaimiento, y esto es contrario al Tao, y lo que es contrario al Tao
pronto dejará de existir."
- Translation from Chinese to English by John C. H. Wu, translated into Spanish by Alfonso Colodrón, Capitulo 30
"Quien gobierna ateniéndose al Tao
no intenta dominar el mundo mediante la fuerza de las armas.
Está en la naturaleza de las armas militares volverse
contra los propios hombres que las crearon.
Donde se estacionan los ejércitos, sólo crecen después zarzas y espinos.
Durísimos años de hambruna de seguro seguirán a una gran guerra.
Así, el sabio busca el progreso de su pueblo,
y no el dominio de los pueblos vecinos.
Por eso no intenta conquistar por la fuerza.
Ese es el método del sabio,
Porque expandirse excesivamente es precipitar el decaimiento,
y esto es contrario al Tao, y lo que es contrario al Tao
generará su propia destrucción."
- Translation from Wikisource, 2013, Capitulo 30
Tao Te Ching
Commentary, Interpretations, Research Tools, Resources
Daodejing by Laozi: Chapters with Chinese characters, seal script, detailed word by word concordance, Pinyin (tone#), German, French and English. This is an outstanding resource for serious students of the Tao Te Ching.
Yellow Bridge Dao De Jing Comparison Table Provides side by side comparisons of translations of the Tao Te Ching by James Legge, D. T. Suzuki, and Dwight Goddard. Chinese characters for each paragraph in the Chapter are on the left; place your cursor over the Chinese characters to see the Pinyin Romanization of the Chinese character and a list of meanings.
Center Tao. Includes a brief commentary on each Chapter. A keyword glossary for each chapter is provided.
Tao Te Ching in Chinese characters, Pinyin Romanization, English and German by Dr. Hilmar Alquiros.
Translators' Index, Tao Te Ching Translators Sorted Alphabetically by Translator, Links to Books and Online Versions
Tao Te Ching: The Definitive Edition By Jonathan Star. Translation, commentary and research tools. New York, Jeremy P. Tarcher, Penguin, 2001. Concordance, tables, appendices, 349 pages. A new rendition of the Tao Te Ching is provided, then a verbatim translation with extensive notes. Detailed tables for each verse provide line number, all the Chinese characters, Wade-Giles Romanization, and a list of meanings for each character. An excellent print reference tool!
Two Visions of the Way: A Study of the Wang Pi and the Ho-Shang Kung Commentaries on the Lao-Tzu. By Professor by Alan Kam-Leung Chan. SUNY Series in Chinese Philosophy and Culture. State University of New York Press, 1991. Index, bibliography, glossary, notes, 314 pages. ISBN: 0791404560.
Chinese Reading of the Daodejing Wang Bi's Commentary on the Laozi with Critical Text and Translation. By Professor Rudolf G. Wagner. A SUNY Series in Chinese Philosophy and Culture. English and Mandarin Chinese Edition. State University of New York Press; Bilingual edition (October 2003). 540 pages. ISBN: 978-0791451823. Wang Bi (Wang Pi, Fusi), 226-249 CE, Commentary on the Tao Te Ching.
Lao-tzu's Taoteching Translated by Red Pine (Bill Porter). Includes many brief selected commentaries for each Chapter draw from commentaries in the past 2,000 years. Provides a verbatim translation and shows the text in Chinese characters. San Francisco, Mercury House, 1996, Second Edition, 184 pages. An invaluable resource for commentaries.
Reading Lao Tzu: A Companion to the Tao Te Ching with a New Translation By Ha Poong Kim. Xlibris, 2003, 198 pages.
Dao De Jing: A Philosophical Translation By Roger T. Ames and David T. Hall. Ballantine, 2003, 256 pages.
Lao Tzu: Te-Tao Ching - A New Translation Based on the Recently Discovered Ma-wang-tui Texts (Classics of Ancient China) Translated with and introduction and detailed exposition and commentary by Professor Robert G. Henricks. New York, Ballantine Books, 1992. Includes Chinese characters for each chapter. Bibliography, detailed notes, 282 pages.
Revealing the Tao Te Ching: In Depth Commentaries on an Ancient Classic. By Hu Huezhi. Edited by Jesse Lee Parker. Seven Star Communications, 2006. 240 pages.
Cloud Hands Blog Mike Garofalo writes about Taoism, Gardening, Taijiquan, Walking, Mysticism, Qigong, and the Eight Ways.
Tao Te Ching: A New Translation and Commentary. By Ellen Chen. Paragon House, 1998. 274 pages.
The Tao and Method: A Reasoned Approach to the Tao Te Ching. By Michael Lafargue. New York, SUNY Press, 1994. 660 pages.
The Whole Heart of Tao: The Complete Teachings from the Oral Tradition of Lao-Tzu. By John Bright-Fey. Crane Hill Publishers, 2006. 376 pages.
Gushen Grove Notebooks for the Tao Te Ching
This webpage was last modified or updated on November 8, 2014.
This webpage was first distributed online on March 12, 2011.
Zhuangzi (Chuang Tzu, Zhuang Zhou, Master Chuang) 369—286 BCE
The Tao Te Ching (Dao De Jing) by Lao Tzu (Laozi) circa 500 BCE