The quiet and clarity classic (Trans, Robert Coons)

清 靜 經 

The Clarity and Stillness Classic, (Author unknown), translated by Robert Coons.


The old Gentleman said: The great Dao has no form, it gives birth to heaven and earth.
The great Dao has no emotions, it moves the sun and move along their path.


The great Dao has no name, it forever nurtures the ten thousand beings.
I don’t know its name, the strong name I give it is “the way.”


The Dao is both clear and solid, moving and still. The sky is clear the earth is solid, the sky moves, the earth is still.


Male is clear and female is solid. Male moves and female is still. Descending from its root and flowing to its end, and giving birth to the Ten thousand beings.


Clarity is the origin of solidity. Movement is the origin of stillness. If people can remain long clear and still, heaven and earth will return entirely.


He whose spirit wishes to be clear has a confused heart. He who wishes his heart to be still will always be drawn by his desires.


If he can forever diminish his desire, his heart will be quiet of its own accord.
Purifying his heart, his spirit will become clear of its own accord.


Naturally the six desires will not arise, the three poisons will be extinguished.
He who can’t, can’t because his heart is not yet pure.


His desire has not yet been reduced. If he can reduce it, he can observe inside his mind. His mind will be without a mind.


He looks out at his form, his form with without a form. He looks far away at other beings, their being is without a being.


Understanding these three, he only meets with emptiness. Seeing emptiness upon emptiness, the emptiness has no emptiness.


All that is empty is also nothing. Nothing, nothing, and nothing. After nothing, nothing and nothing then he will be deeply quiet.


Quiet and without any quiet, how would his desire arise? Without desire arising, he will be truly still.


Forever complying with nature, forever grasping consciousness. Forever complying, forever still. Forever clear and still.


This clarity and stillness gradually enters the real Dao. After it has entered the real Dao, it is called “obtaining the Dao,”


Even though it is called obtaining the Dao, nothing has been obtained.
Because all life has been changed, it is called obtaining the Dao.


He who understands this can grasp the way of the sages.


The old gentleman said: the highest master does not argue, the lowest master loves to argue. The highest virtue has no virtue, the lowest virtue holds virtue.


That which is held and tries cannot be called the virtue of the Dao. All living things therefore cannot have grasped the true Dao.


If he has a reckless heart, then after he has a reckless heart then he has an upset spirit, after he has an upset spirit


then he tries to affect the ten thousand beings, after he tries to affect the ten thousand beings
then he entreats a greedy purpose, after he entreats a greedy purpose,


Then he will become angry and agitated. Angry, agitated and with uncontrolled thought, he will be tied up in bitterness of body and mind, and he will alone befall disgrace.


Flowing forever between life and death, forever submurged in the bitter sea. Forever losing the true way.


The real forever lasting Dao, if understood, then he will grasp it naturally. If he grasps and understands the Dao, he will be forever clear and still.

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