next up previous contents index
Next: Eighty-one Up: Tao Te Ching Previous: Seventy-nine   Contents   Index



If the land is small, and its people few
With tenfold enough to occupy each in full measure
And if no one has taught them how to waste
What must suffice for all in the land:
Then not a boat, nor a cart
Can tempt the people to leave;
Not a sword, nor a whip
Is needed to encourage them.

People reckon simply,
Relish plain food set on a plain table,
Wear plain clothing that suits their need;
They remain content to
Live in homes their customs and habits can
Easily afford.

And should another town be located so close
that you might hear its dogs barking and roosters crowing,
These people are so glad of their own lives
They know so well
That they have no need to visit any other place.

Henry Meyerding 2007-01-27