title: Tao Te Ching 20 - Stop Thinking and End Your Problems

Book - Tao Te Ching - Lao Tzu

Stephen Mitchell Translation

Stop thinking, and end your problems.1 What difference between yes and no?2 What difference between success and failure? Must you value what others value,3 avoid what others avoid? How ridiculous!

Other people are excited, as though they were at a parade. I alone don’t care, I alone am expressionless, like an infant before it can smile.

Other people have what they need; I alone possess nothing.4 I alone drift about, like someone without a home. I am like an idiot, my mind is so empty.

Other people are bright; I alone am dark.

Other people are sharp; I alone am dull.

Other people have a purpose; I alone don’t know.5

I drift like a wave on the ocean, I blow as aimless as the wind.6 I am different from ordinary people. I drink from the Great Mother’s breasts.

  1. Arguing with reality is the source of suffering
  2. Yin Yang
  3. if we seek social status we give other people power over us
  4. What you own owns you
  5. Not-knowing
  6. Wu Wei

Other translations

- Stephen Addiss & Stanley Lombardo

Banish learning, no more grief. Between Yes and No How much difference? Between good and evil How much difference?? What others fear I must fear - How pointless! People are wreathed in smiles As if at a carnival banquet. I alone am passive, giving no sign, Like an infant who has not yet smiles. Forlorn as if I had no home. Others have enough and more, I alone am left out. I have the mind of a fool, Confused, confused. Others are bright and intelligent, I alone and dull, dull, Drifting on the ocean, Blown about endlessly. Others have plans, I alone am wayward and stubborn, I alone am different from others, Like a baby in the womb.