06 June 2011


A country becomes great by lying low,
like the delta of a great river.
The confluence of the realm.
The mother of the world.

The female conquers the male by stillness.
Being still, she takes the lower position.

A great country conquers a small country
by taking the lower position.
A small country conquers a great country
by merging with it.

Thus, the great country conquers by yielding,
the small country conquers by being absorbed.

The great country needs more people.
The small country needs greater purpose.
Each gets what it needs.

It is proper for greatness to yield.