The trunk is hollow,
But the branches live.
The void is fundamental,
But the ten thousand things are diverse.
Therefore, wanderers free themselves of cares
And follow Tao in great delight.
The base of a tree may occasionally be hollow, yet the trunk can rise a hundred feet to support a lushly growing crown. Tao may be void, but the world has great profusion. This is because there is no separation between void and phenomena. Therefore, Tao cannot be gained from denying the world.
Void is a part of all reality and thus has tangibility. The great Tao permeates the world and so it can be studied in the world. All that needs to be known about Tao’s manifestation can be known by traveling through life. All experiences are valid, for all experiences are of Tao.
In all of life, the only thing that separates from Tao is the human ego, because one places oneself before all other things. By contrast, those who follow Tao divest themselves of self-importance and desire for success. They prefer to follow Tao as it flows through the land. They move from place to place as they intuitively sense its direction. Feeling the divine energy, they live in its vital flow. These wanderers have glimpsed the void that is in them and in all things. They delight in life but never see more than void.