When wealth and honours lead to arrogancy, this brings its evil on itself.
When we can lay hold of the Tao of old to direct the things of the present day, and are able to know it as it was of old in the beginning, this is called (unwinding) the clue of Tao.
When virtue is lost, benevolence appears, when benevolence is lost right conduct appears, when right conduct is lost, expedience appears. Expediency is the mere shadow of right and truth; it is the beginning of disorder.
When two great forces oppose each other, the victory will go to the one that knows how to yield.
When things are murky, quiet down, and they will gradually clear. Proceed, and momentum gradually builds.
When things (in the vegetable world) have displayed their luxuriant growth, we see each of them return to its root.
When the work is done, and one's name is becoming distinguished, to withdraw into obscurity is the way of Heaven.
When the people of the world all know beauty as beauty, there arises the recognition of ugliness. When they all know the good as good, there arises the recognition of evil.
When the people have many weapons, the nation grows more benighted.
When the intelligent and animal souls are held together in one embrace, they can be kept from separating.
When the Great Tao (Way or Method) ceased to be observed, benevolence and righteousness came into vogue.
When the court is arrayed in splendor, The fields are full of weeds, And the granaries are empty. Some wear gorgeous clothes, Carry sharp swords, And indulge in food and drink; They have more possessions than they can use. They are robber barons. This is certainly not the way of Tao.
When the best leader's work is done the people say, "We did it ourselves."
When superior people hear guidance, they carry it out diligently and ably. When mediocre people hear guidance, it seems vague and uncertain. When lesser people hear guidance, they laugh.
When reconciling great hatred there will some remain. How can it be made good? Therefore the wise man accepts the debit side of the account and does not have to enforce payment from others.
When pure sincerity forms within, it is outwardly realized in other people's hearts.
When people see some things as beautiful, other things become ugly. When people see some things as good, other things become bad. Being and non-being create each other.
When one knows that he is his mother's child, and proceeds to guard (the qualities of) the mother that belong to him, to the end of his life he will be free from all peril.
When one gives undivided attention to the (vital) breath, and brings it to the utmost degree of pliancy, he can become as a (tender) babe.
When men lost their understanding of the Tao, intelligence came along, bringing hypocrisy with it.
When its work is accomplished, it does not claim the name of having done it.