Great quality may seem defective,
but use does not wear it out.
Great fullness may seem empty,
but use does not exhaust it.

Great truth may seem warped.
Great skill may seem clumsy.
Great wealth may appear mediocre.
Great eloquence may sound inarticulate.

Agitation fights the cold,
but stillness overcomes the heat:
purity and equilibrium can change the world.

 


chapter notes:

The text of this chapter is a straightforward translation; the chapter title only suggests a concrete example.