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For nearly two generations, this translation of the Tao Te Ching has been the standard for those seeking access to the wisdom of Taoist thought. Now Jane English and her long-time editor, Toinette Lippe, have refreshed and revised the translation, so that it more faithfully reflects the Classical Chinese in which it was first written, while taking into account changes in our own language and eliminating any lingering infelicities. Lao Tsu’s philosophy is simple: Accept what is in front of you without wanting the situation to be other than it is. Study the natural order of things and work with it rather than against it, for to try to change what is only sets up resistance. Nature provides everything without requiring payment or thanks. It does so without discrimination. So let us present the same face to everyone and treat them all as equals, however they may behave. If we watch carefully, we will see that work proceeds more quickly and easily if we stop “trying,” if we stop putting in so much extra effort, if we stop looking for results. In the clarity of a still and open mind, truth will be reflected. Te—which may be translated as “virtue” or “strength”—lies always in Tao meaning “the way” or “natural law.” In other words: Simply be.
For twenty years, Gordon J. Van De Water has collected editions of the world classic the Tao Te Ching and pondered this ancient, yet still vibrant Chinese text of wisdom literature. Written in the sixth century before the Common Era and ascribed to Lao Tzu, a venerable sage, it offers a guide to life based on adherence to the Tao or Mother Nature, those forces and powers that govern and shape both the world and human nature. Its eighty-one verses repeatedly emphasize seeking harmony through simplicity, the rejection of the trappings of material wealth and the arrogance of power, and identification with the great underlying forces of the universe. Many of the verses also offer practical wisdom for those in leadership positions. So fascinating has been the compressed wisdom of the Tao Te Ching that it has been translated into many languages more often than any other book except the Bible. Van De Water has sought to strike to the heart of this highly compressed and often enigmatic text by creating a plain English version that highlights the continuing relevance of the Tao Te Ching for our complex and oft troubled times. His interpretation also includes an introduction, selected translations and interpretations in English by pioneering scholars, and an extensive bibliography of translations and interpretations in English.
Examines the traditional and modern Western interpretations of the Tao-te-ching, and its author, Lao-tzu.
Chinese classic by well known best selling author.
Having masterfully translated a wide range of ancient Chinese poets and philosophers, David Hinton is uniquely qualified to offer the definitive contemporary English version of Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching. Like all of his translations, Hinton's translation of the Tao Te Ching is mind-opening, presenting startling new dimensions in this widely-influential text. He shows how Lao Tzu's spirituality is structured around the generative life-force, for example, and that this system of thought weaves the human into natural process at the deepest levels of being, thereby revealing the Tao Te Ching as an originary text in deep feminist and ecological thought. Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching is not only the single most important text ever composed in China, it is probably the most influential spiritual text in human history. In the past, virtually all translations of this text have been produced either by sinologists having little poetic facility in English, or writers having no ability to read the original Chinese. Hinton's fluency in ancient Chinese and his acclaimed poetic ability provide him the essential qualifications. Together, they allow a breathtaking new translation that reveals how remarkably current and even innovative this text is after 2500 years.
"Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching is not only the single most important text in Chinese spirituality, it is probably the most influential spiritual text in human history. In the past, virtually all translations of this text have been produced either by sinologists having little poetic facility in English, or writers having no ability to read the original Chinese. David Hinton's fluency in ancient Chinese and his award-winning poetic ability combine both of these essential qualifications. Together, they allow a breathtaking new translation that reveals how remarkably current and even innovative this text is after 2500 years. This volume is the last in a series of translations presenting the four central masterworks of ancient Chinese thought : Tao Te Ching, Chuang Tzu, The Analects, and Mencius."--Back cover.
A landmark translation of one of the most popular works of world literture, this edition of the Tao Te Ching is based on the Ma-wang-tui manuscripts. From the Trade Paperback edition.

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