Tao Te Ching – Chapter One

The Tao

The Tao that can be captured in words is not the true Tao.
The name that can be named is not the eternal Name.

All that exist was born from what does not exist:
this nothing, is the nameless, is the beginning, the source beyond existence,
which still exists, now;
yet, as the mother of all things, she is nameable, as are all things,
their names pointing to their essences,
all existence flowing from Tao.

Tao Te Ching Chapter one

Flowing into the nothingness of Tao, dissolving yourself into its essence;
flowing in communion with Tao through things that exist
while honouring the bondage of all existence to limitation;

either way,
by emptying yourself, becoming spacious and open,
its life force can gather in you as instrument for birth-and-death of existence;

you can be like Tao, not needing anything,
feeling the wonder and root of everything.

Both paths flow from and to the same source,
a flowing deeper into mystery,
mystery, the waters of her streams.
This is called entering the darkness.

Darkness within darkness:
gateway to all understanding.


1. This rendering of Tao Te Ching, Chapter 1 by Fritz Loest, done with a view of the translations by Richard Wilhelm, Stephen Mitchell, John Wu and Man-ho Kwok, and, Martin Palmer and Jay Ramsay.

Related posts: