Everything flourishes; each return to its root
Returning to the root is called tranquility
Tranquility is called returning to one’s nature
Returning to one’s nature is called constancy
Knowing constancy is called clarity
Not knowing constancy, one recklessly causes trouble
Knowing constancy is acceptance
Acceptance is impartiality
Impartiality is sovereign
Sovereign is Heaven
Heaven is the Word
The Word is eternal
The self is no more

(Tao Te Jing, Chapter 16)

There is something formless born before Heaven and Earth
So silent! So ethereal!
Independent, changeless, circulating, ceaseless
I do not know its name. To identify it, I call it “The Tao”
Forced to describe it, I call it “The Great”
Great means passing; Passing means receding
Receding means returning
Therefore the Tao is great; Heaven is great
Earth is great; Man is also great
Man follows the laws of Earth
Earth follows the laws of Heaven
Heaven follows the laws of Tao
Tao follows only itself

(Tao Te Jing, Chapter 25)