Study Guide

Tao Te Ching Chapter 20

By Lao Tzu

Chapter 20

  • Again, we're warned against getting too obsessed with knowledge; it only causes worries.
  • Next, we're asked some questions that make us think about the relativity of things.
  • What's the difference between being respectful and scornful?
  • What's the difference between good and evil?
  • Doesn't it all depend on your perspective?
  • Now, the TTC goes into a description of how living as a Tao master can separate you from other people.
  • When everybody is happy and enjoying a feast, you can seem uninvolved, like a baby who isn't smiling yet.
  • Other people may seem bright and clear, but you can seem muddled.
  • Other people might seem way more with it, while you seem detached.
  • Really, though, you're as peaceful as the ocean; you're connected to the infinite wind that's blowing around you.
  • Other people may seem like real winners because they're out there achieving goals and stuff, while a person living with the Tao might seem like a big-time loser.
  • But valuing the Tao is the real success.

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