weapons turn on their wielders


 

Those

who wish to use

Tao to influence others 

don’t rely on force or weapons

or military strategies. Force rebounds. 

Weapons turn on their wielders. 

Battles are inevitably

followed by

famines. 

 

Just do

what needs to be done,

and then stop. Attain your purpose,

but don’t press your advantage. Be resolute,

but don’t force. Succeed, but don’t

crow. Accomplish, but don’t

overpower. 

 

Overdoing

things invites decay, 

and this is against Tao. 

Whatever is against

Tao soon ceases

to be.

 

from The Tao te Ching of Lao Tzu,

Chapter 30