The wise student hears of the Tao and practices it diligently.
The average student hears of the Tao and gives it thought now and again.
The foolish student hears of the Tao and laughs aloud.
If there were no laughter, the Tao would not be what it is.
Therefore there is the established saying:
“Those who understand Tao seem dull of comprehension;
Those who advance in Tao seem to slip backward;
Those who move on the smooth Tao (Path) seem bumpy.”
The highest Te is like a valley (able to accept all and humble).
It is so pure but seems tarnished.
It is vast but seems not enough.
It is strong but seems frail.
It is real but seems unreal.
About the great
It is a great square with no corners
It is great talents that ripen late;
It is great notes that are hard to hear;
It is great form that has no shape;
The Tao is hidden and without name.
The Tao alone nourishes and brings everything to fulfillment.
Tao Te Ching-translation by S. Mitchell
The Tao Te Ching -translation by Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English
Tao Te Ching-translation by Yu Tang Lin