The Nourishment of the Tao, Virtue as a Nurse, Guiding, Creativity, Mystical
Freedom, Nature, Follow the Tao, Harmony, Honor Virtue, 養德
"The Way conceives them.
Integrity receives them.
Matter allows them.
Nature endows them.
All creatures thus respect the Way
and honor its Integrity.
No one demands that this be so.
Their respect by nature ever flows.
The Way gives birth to them and nurtures them.
It shapes them, develops them,
shelters them, strengthens them,
sustains them, preserves them.
Creating, not claiming as one's own,
working, not waiting for return,
guiding, not seeking to control:
such is the wonder of integrity."
- Translated by Douglas Allchin, Chapter 51
"The Way produces all things.
Power nourishes them.
Matter gives them physical form.
Environment shapes their abilities.
Therefore all things respect the Way and honor power.
The Way is respected, and power is honored
without anyone's order and always naturally.
Therefore the Way produces all things,
and power nourishes them,
caring for them and developing them,
sheltering them and comforting them,
nurturing them and protecting them,
producing them but not possessing them,
helping them but not obligating them,
guiding them but not controlling them.
This is mystical power."
- Translated by Sanderson Beck, Chapter 51
"Ten thousand Dao begets and breeds,
Which its power tends and feeds
As objects all take varied shape,
As things to use reach final form.
For this the natural myriad
Honour the Way, esteem its power.
Such honour and such high esteem
No mandate from above decreed;
It is their norm of self-becoming.
Dao indeed begets and breeds
All its power tends and feeds
And fosters and then raises up
And brings to full maturity
And still preserves and still protects.
For Dao begets but does not keep,
Works its way but does not bind:
Authority that does not rule.
Such is the meaning of “hidden power”."
- Translated by Moss Roberts, Chapter 51
"Tao brings all the creatures of the world to be born
And by following the way they come to fill their nature
Thus do they follow the tao and honor virtue
No one asks them to; they do it without thinking
It creates them but doesn't own them
It supplies them but doesn't make them dependent
It matures them but doesn't command them
This is the ideal of virtue."
- Translated by Ted Wrigley, Chapter 51
"All things are produced by the Tao, and nourished by
its outflowing operation. They receive their forms according to the nature of
each, and are completed according to the circumstances of their condition.
Therefore all things without exception honour the Tao, and exalt its outflowing
This honouring of the Tao and exalting of its operation is not the result of any ordination, but always a spontaneous tribute.
Thus it is that the Tao produces (all things), nourishes them, brings them to their full growth, nurses them, completes them, matures them, maintains them, and overspreads them.
It produces them and makes no claim to the possession of them; it carries them through their processes and does not vaunt its ability in doing so; it brings them to maturity and exercises no control over them;--this is called its mysterious operation."
- Translated by James Legge, Chapter 51
"The Tao begets existence.
Intelligence nurtures existence.
Substance forms existence.
Forces complete existence.
For this reason,
Everything in existence, without exception,
Reveres the Tao and honors Intelligence,
Not by any decree, but with utter spontaneity.
Thus, the Tao begets everything in existence,
And Intelligence nurtures it,
Giving birth without possessing,
Availing life without claiming,
Promoting growth without controlling,
These are the Profound Virtues of Kosmic Intelligence."
- Translated by Yasuhiko Genku Kimura, Chapter 51
"A guide starts it,
virtuosity cultivates it,
Natural kinds model it
and circumstances complete it.
For this reason, among the ten-thousand natural kinds,
None fail to respect a guide and value virtuosity.
This respecting of guides
and valuing of virtuosity
is not, in general, commanded in words instead it treats self-so-ingas constant.
Hence a guide starts it,
virtuosity cultivates it,
Acts as its elder, educates it,
shades it, poisons it,
nourishes it and returns it.
Gives rise to and not 'exist,'
Deem:act and not rely on anything.
Acts as elder and does not rule.
This would be called 'profound virtuosity.'"
- Translated by Chad Hansen, Chapter 51
"Tao creates all things,
Virtue nurtures them.
Matter gives them forms, and
Environment allows them to succeed.
Thus all things honour Tao and value Virtue.
Tao being honoured and Virtue being valued,
They always occurred naturally without being dictated by anyone.
Tao creates all thing.
Virtue nurtures them:
They grow and develop;
Bear fruits and mature; and
Are cared for and protected.
To create, but not to possess;
To care for, but not to control;
To lead, but not to subjugate.
This is called the profound virtue."
- Translated by Cheng, Chapter 51
The Way bears all things;
Harmony nurtures them;
Nature shapes them;
Use completes them.
Each follows the Way and honours harmony,
Not by law,
But by being.
The Way bears, nurtures, shapes, completes,
Shelters, comforts, and makes a home for them.
Bearing without possessing,
Nurturing without taming,
Shaping without forcing,
This is harmony.
- Translated by Peter Merel, Chapter 51
"Tao gives life to all creatures; teh feeds them;
materiality shapes them; energy completes them.
Therefore among all things there is none that does not honor Tao and esteem teh.
Honor for Tao and esteem for teh is never compelled, it is always spontaneous.
Therefore Tao gives life to them, but teh nurses them, raises them, nurtures, completes, matures, rears, protects them.
Tao gives life to them but makes no claim of ownership; teh forms them but makes no claim upon them, raises them but does not rule them.
This is profound vitality (teh)."
- Translated by Dwight Goddard, Chapter 51
"Tao gives life to all things.
Virtue nourishes them.
Material world gives them form.
Circumstances make them complete.
Therefore of the myriad things,
Each one reveres Tao
And each one pays tribute to virtue.
They do so without being ordered.
They do so of themselves.
Tao gives life to them.
Virtue nourishes and matures them.
It teaches them and protects them.
It rests them, supports them and guards them.
Tao gives life to them but it does not possess them.
It toils for them but expects no praise.
It guides them but does not dominate them.
This is the secret virtue."
- Translated by Agnieszka Solska, Chapter 51
Tao Te Ching
Commentary, Interpretations, Research Tools, Resources
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 reference tool!
Yellow Bridge Dao De Jing Comparison Table, Chapter 51 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 commentary on each Chapter.
The Complete Works of Lao Tzu: Tao Teh Ching & Hua Hu Ching Translation and elucidation by Hua Ching Ni.
Tao Te Ching Commentaries - Google Search
Translators' Index, Tao Te Ching Translators Sorted Alphabetically by Translator, Links to Books and Online Versions
Tao Te Ching: A Bibliography and Index of Translations on the Web
Chapter 51 in the Rambling Taoist Commentaries by Trey Smith. The Rambling Taoists are Trey Smith and Scott Bradley.
Valley Spirit, Gu Shen, Concept, Chapter 6
Das Tao Te King von Lao Tse The largest collection of very nicely formatted complete versions of the Tao Te Ching. The collection includes 209 complete versions in 27 languages, plus 28 Chinese versions. There are 112 English language versions of the Tao Te Ching available at this website. A variety of search methods and comparison methods are provided, as well a a detailed index.
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.
Chapter 51, Line by Line Comparisons of 27 Translations of the Tao Te Ching Compiled by the St. Xenophon Wayist Seminary
Dao De Jing: A Philosophical Translation By Roger T. Ames and David T. Hall. Ballantine, 2003, 256 pages.
Thematic Index to the 81 Chapters of the Tao Te Ching
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.
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