- rather than illuminate the spiritual nature of man. Only in a state of negation can true spirituality be found.
Yao's tutor was Hsü Yu. The latter's tutor was Yeh Ch'üeh, and Yeh Ch'üeh's tutor was Wang I, whose tutor was Pei I.
Yao enquired of Hsü Yu, saying, "Would Yeh Ch'üeh do to be emperor? I am going to get Wang I to ask him."
"Alas!" cried Hsü Yu, "that would be bad indeed for the empire. Yeh Ch'üeh is a clever and capable man. He is by nature better than most men, but he seeks by means of the human to reach the divine. He strives to do no wrong; but he is ignorant of the source from which wrong springs. Emperor forsooth! He avails himself of the artificial and neglects the natural. He lacks unity in himself. He worships intelligence and is always in a state of ferment. He is a slave to circumstances and to things. Wherever he looks, his surroundings respond. He himself responds to his surroundings.
- He is not yet an abstraction, informed by Tao.
He is always undergoing modifications and is wanting in fixity. How should such a one be fit for emperor? Still every clan has its elder. He may be leader of a clan, but not a leader of leaders. A captain who has been successful in suppressing rebellion, as minister is a bane, as sovereign, a thief."