The laughter of country folk is uncomplicated.
The laughter of city folk is full of dark nuance.
The ambition of country folk is to grow their crops well.
The ambition of city folk is to overcome others.
The joy of country folk is to participate in the seasons.
The joy of city folk is to achieve sophistication.
When you see urban people in the countryside, you can often hear one of them making fun of the simplicity of the country folk. After all, we have so many words to mock them with : bumpkin, yokel, hick, hayseed, peasant, clodhopper, hillbilly, lout, oaf, cabbagehead, simpleton, rube. If one stops to consider, are these descriptions worse than neurotic, compulsive, stressed, ambitious, devious, shrewd, obsessive, money-hungry, or nouveau riche?
Those who follow Tao celebrate country living over the difficult existence in the cities. While we certainly cannot go back to an exclusively agrarian way of living, it is beneficial for us to consider the agrarian ideal. City living is a mental construct that collapses once we cease to make it real.
Strive in the cities, if you must. But don’t forget that there is little ultimate value in it. Don’t forget your soul, and don’t forget that a rustic setting is the best way to keep your soul.