Page:Zhuang Zi - translation Giles 1889.djvu/401

This page has been validated.
CAP. XXVII.]
367
Language

derstood. After four years, my intelligence developed. After five years, it was complete. After six years, the spirit entered into me. After seven, I knew God. After eight, life and death existed for me no more. After nine, perfection.

"Life has its distinctions; but in death we are all made equal. That death should have an origin, but that life should have no origin,—can this be so? What determines its presence in one place, its absence in another?

"Heaven has its fixed order.

Visible to all.

Earth has yielded up its secrets to man. But where to seek whence am I?

"Not knowing the hereafter, how can we deny the operation of Destiny? Not knowing what preceded birth, how can we assert the operation of Destiny? When things turn out as they ought, who shall say that the agency is not supernatural? When things turn out otherwise, who shall say that it is?"


The various Penumbræ said to the Umbra, "Before you were looking down, now you are looking up. Before you had your hair tied up, now it is all loosed. Before you were sitting, now you have got up. Before you were moving, now you are stopping still. How is this?"

"Gentlemen," replied the Umbra, "the question is hardly worth asking.

Ultimate causes being unknowable.