The Tao that can be spoken is not the eternal Tao
The name that can be named is not the eternal name
The nameless is the origin of Heaven and Earth
The named is the mother of myriad things
Thus, constantly without desire, one observes its essence
Constantly with desire, one observes its manifestations
These two emerge together but differ in name
The unity is said to be the mystery
Mystery of mysteries, the door to all wonders
This translation was written by Derek Lin (dereklin.com). I found it very simple and easy to interpret.
Basically what Lao Tzu is saying here is that the Tao is spirit, and the essence of spirit is eternal, intangible and unfathomable. However, once observed, the creation of all worldly things emerge. What we focus on, reveals itself in a manner which we can interpret or understand. If not observed, it is still there in essence without our interpretation and is the fabric of the universe.
Well, that’s my interpretation anyway 😉