Just what date we can put on this record from is uncertain, but it may have informed Sima Qian’s biography.According to the biography, during the course of their conversations Laozi told Confucius to give up his prideful ways and seeking of power.Sima Qian adds another layer to the biography without commenting on the degree of confidence he has in its truthfulness, according to which it is said that Laozi lived 160 years or even 200 years, as a result of cultivating the and nurturing his longevity. that Zhou and Qin would break apart and that a new king would arise from Qin. ) had the power to predict the political future of the people, including the fragmentation of the Zhou dynasty and the rise of the Qin in about 221 B. But Sima Qian likewise refuses to identify Laozi with this Dan.An additional tradition included in the first biography is that Dan, the historiographer of Zhou predicted in 479 B. Finally, the first biography concludes with a reference to Laozi’s son and his descendants. This was necessitated by Lao Dan's association with the grand historiographer Dan during the Zhou, who predicted the rise of the Qin state.Laozi recommends to Wuzhi that he try to release Confucius from the fetters of his tendency to make rules and human discriminations (for example, right/wrong; beautiful/ugly) and set him free to wander with the .Lao Dan addresses Confucius by his personal name "Qiu" in three passages.Later they were gathered and arranged by an editor.The internal structure of the DDJ is only one ground for the denial of a single author for the text.
The biography goes on to say that Laozi cultivated the However, as the state of Zhou continued to decline, Laozi decided to leave China through the Western pass (toward India) and that upon his departure he gave to the keeper of the pass, one Yin Xi, a book divided into two parts, one on and of 5,000 characters in length. This is perhaps the most familiar of the traditions narrated by Sima Qian and it contains the core of most every subsequent biography or hagiography of Laozi of significance. Sima Qian went on to record what other sources said about Laozi.
Based on the probable date of the closing of the tomb, the version of the DDJ found within it may date as early as c. Sima Qian reports that Laozi was a historiographer in charge of the archives of Zhou.
Moreover, Sima Qian tells us that Confucius had traveled to see Laozi to learn about the performance of rituals from him.
Accordingly, the point of the story that mentions Laozi's occupation as librarian or an archivist (ch.
13) is that Confucius' writings, offered to Laozi by Confucius himself, are simply not worthy to be put into a library.