Those who are skilled in combat do notbecome angered, those who are skilled at winning do not become afraid. Thus the wise win before they fight, while the ignorant fight to win.
Nothing is harder to see into thanpeoples nature. The sage looks at subtle phenomena and listens tosmall voices. This harmonizes the outside with the inside and the inside with the outside.
Opportunistic relationships can hardly be kept constant. The acquaintance of honorable people, even at a distance, does not add flowers in times of warmth and does not change its leaves in times of cold: it continues unfading through the four seasons, becomes increasingly stable as it passes through ease and danger.
To overcome the intelligent by folly is contrary to the natural order of things; to overcome the foolish by intelligence is in accord with the natural order. To overcome the intelligent by intelligence, however, is a matter of opportunity.