Lao Tzu Tao Te Ching Chapter 24

Translations at a glance

J Legge    J H McDonald   Lin Yutang

Tao Te Ching Chapter 24

J Legge

He who stands on his tiptoes does not stand firm; he who stretches his legs does not walk (easily). (So), he who displays himself does not shine; he who asserts his own views is not distinguished; he who vaunts himself does not find his merit acknowledged; he who is self-conceited has no superiority allowed to him. Such conditions, viewed from the standpoint of the Tao, are like remnants of food, or a tumour on the body, which all dislike. Hence those who pursue (the course) of the Tao do not adopt and allow them.

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Tao Te Ching Chapter 24

J H McDonald

Those who stand on tiptoes
do not stand firmly.
Those who rush ahead
don’t get very far.
Those who try to out shine others
dim their own light.
Those who call themselves righteous
can’t know how wrong they are.
Those who boast of their accomplishments
diminishes the things they have done.

Compared to the Tao, these actions are unworthy. If we are to follow the Tao,
we must not do these things.

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Tao Te Ching Chapter 24

Lin Yutang

He who stands on tiptoe does not stand (firm);
He who strains his strides does not walk (well);
He who reveals himself is not luminous;
He who justifies himself is not far-famed;
He who boasts of himself is not given credit;
He who prides himself is not chief among men.
These in the eyes of Tao
Are called “the dregs and tumors of Virtue,”
Which are things of disgust.
Therefore the man of Tao spurns them.

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