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The Ailment

The following is a well-known tale from the Liezi attributed to Taoist Lie Yukou. It appears in various translations such as A.C. Graham's The Book of Lieh-tzu (p82 pdf) and Eva Wong's Lieh-tzu: A Taoist Guide to Practical Living. The following is quoted from the Thomas Cleary translation (details provided at the end): Lung Shu said to the physician Wen Chi, "Your art is subtle. I have an ailment; can you cure it?

The Spirit of the Tao

Taoist teachings have arisen in many forms: abstract aphorisms, philosophical discussions, legends, fables—even jokes. All are represented here, culled from the most popular Taoist classics: the Tao-te Ching, Chuang-tzu, Huai-nan-tzu, and Wen-tzu, stories from the "Tales of Inner Meaning," and teachings of the Taoist patriarch Ancestor Lu. The spirit of the Tao manifests in myriad images, brought to life in this superb translation—from the ever-keen blade of a Taoist butcher to the mechanical miracles of inventor Ken Shiwa, from little boys baiting the great Confucius to mountain hermits disappearing in the mist, from the six robber organs that obscure the primordial to the ineffable mystery of mysteries.