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Care at the Beginning


What lies still is easy to grasp

What lies far off is easy to anticipate

What is brittle is easy to shatter

What is small is easy to disperse

Yet a tree broader than what a man can embrace

Comes from a tiny seed

A dam greater than a river can overcome

Starts with a clump of earth

A journey of a thousand miles

Begins with a single step

Therefore deal with things before they happen

Create order before there is confusion

He who acts with motive, spoils

He who grasps, loses

People often fail on the verge of success

Take care at the end as at the beginning

So that you may avoid failure

The sage desires the undesired

Values the undervalued

Studies what others neglect

Restores to the world what multitudes have passed by

His object is to restore everything to its natural course

But does so without motive

For that would be unnatural

Tao Wisdom