governed. The point of view being always in accordance with Tao, all things responded thereto.
- Under the reign of inaction, the natural prevailed over the artificial. (1) The sovereign could utter no cruel mandate. (2) Sovereign and subject each played his allotted part. (3) The right men were in the right place. (4) All things were as they were, and not as man would have them.
Thus, virtue was the connecting link between God and man, while Tao spread throughout all creation. Men were controlled by outward circumstances, applying their in-born skill to the development of civilised life. This skill was bound up with the circumstances of life, and these with duty, and duty with virtue, and virtue with Tao, and Tao with God.
Therefore it has been said, "As for those who nourished the empire of old, having no desires for themselves, the empire was not in want. They did nothing, and all things proceeded on their course. They preserved a dignified repose, and the people rested in peace."
- We are not told who said these words. They are not in the Tao-Tê-Ching; and yet if Lao Tzŭ did not utter them, it is difficult to say who did.
The Record says, "By converging to One, all things may be accomplished. By the virtue which is without intention, even the supernatural may be subdued."