I’m skipping LXVI for a second, because I really like LXVII a lot more, and I think part of the reason form my Tao fatigue (and overall laziness in October) was the large amount of unrealistic “this is the best leader” chapters. This is a little bit like Lao Tzu (the author) taking this criticism, or anticipating it, and saying, “Look, maybe it does sound counterintuitive. But it also works, and people agree that it works.” Not that it’s like he took a survey of success rates or anything, but he’s acknowledging the disconnect and trying to make us feel better about it.
Some say that my teaching is nonsense.
Others call it lofty but impractical.
But to those who have looked inside themselves,
this nonsense makes perfect sense.
And to those who put it into practice,
this loftiness has roots that go deep.
I have just three things to teach:
simplicity, patience, compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and in thoughts,
you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
you reconcile all beings in the world.