This world has two kinds of difficulties: to be born to the heavens is hard but asking someone for help is even harder.
This world also has two kinds of bitterness: huang lian is bitter (the Chinese know that this plant is very very bitter) but being poor and destitute is far more bitter.
Mankind has two kinds of thinness: newly frozen water surface is thin (you get in big trouble if you step on it) but reliance on others is even thinner.
Mankind also has two kinds of dangers: the mountains and rivers are dangerous, but people’s hearts are even more dangerous.
To know what is difficult means that you are independent and do not seek help from others. To be able to bear bitterness is to be patient and therefore you will stay for the long haul. Knowing what is thin means that you are tolerant and therefore can work with small people. Being able to gauge danger, one is clever and can understand people.
Such a person is very competent and can get things done.
Most importantly, choose a virtuous person: he won’t cheat you!