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[TTC Study] Chapter 61 of the Tao Teh Ching

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This is a real subtle one.


Well, I am glad that I am not the only one who has been troubled by this chapter.


Your imagination is much better than mine is though. Hehehe.


The best I could ever get out of the chapter is:


The Feminine equalling Yin is the place of rest, and


Being low suggests humility as opposed to arrogance.


I am sure there is more to it if looked at from Chinese culture of the time. Perhaps one of our more knowledgeable members will join in here.

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Chapter 61

1. Big country should flow downstream like a river.

2. To be at a peaceful site like the softness of femininity,

3. It would be a perfect place of the world for diplomacy.

4. Femininity always use softness to dominate the masculinity.

5. With humbleness to lower oneself.

6. Therefore, a big country serves a small country with humbleness,

7. Hence, wins the trust of the small country .

8. Small country repay a big country with unpretentious,

9. Then, gains the trust of the big country.

10.So, either one lower oneself to gain the trust of the other,

11.Or one yields to give the trust to the other.

12.A big country give aids to a small country,

13.A small country has tolerance for a big country.

14.Thus both countries have their wishes fulfilled,

15.Though the dominant, yet, should be more humble.



1. 大國者下流,

2. 天下之牝。

3. 天下之交也。

4. 牝常以靜勝牡。

5. 以靜為下。

6. 故大國以下小國,

7. 則取小國。

8. 小國以下大國,

9. 則取大國。







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Nice translation. Thanks.


Okay. We can add one more thing to my understanding of the chapter - that of compromise.


The acts of absorbing and being absorbed.

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