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The ordinances of Heaven (维天之命), Book of Songs (詩經)
03-25-2011, 11:38 AM
Post: #1
The ordinances of Heaven (维天之命), Book of Songs (詩經)
The Book of Songs (詩經), also called Classic of Poetry, the Book of Odes, and often known simply as its original name The Odes, is the earliest existing collection of Chinese poems and songs.

It comprises 305 poems and songs, some possibly from as early as 1000 BC. Over half of the poems are said to have originally been popular songs. They concern basic human problems such as love, marriage, work, and war. Others include court poems, and legendary accounts praising the founders of the Zhou dynasty. Included are also hymns used in sacrificial rites, and songs used by the aristocracy in their sacrificial ceremonies or at banquets.

The poem 267 “The ordinances of Heaven” has been often claimed as indicating the internal alchemy practice in a general sense. By my understanding it describes the process for human beings to communicate with and commune with heaven. Here I made some efforts in polishing the translation from several versions and attach it below for people to make further editing.
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The ordinances of Heaven,
How profound and never out of phase!
And oh! how glorious and ample,
Is Lord Wen's virtue pure and simple!
He overwhelms us with his graceful boon,
From which we benefit in ev'ry case.
Striving to be in accord with him, our king Wen!
And may his remotest descendant be abundantly the same!

維天之命、於穆不已。
於乎不顯、文王之德之純。
假以溢我、我其收之。
駿惠我文王、曾孫篤之。
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03-26-2011, 10:58 PM
Post: #2
RE: The ordinances of Heaven (维天之命), Book of Songs (詩經)
I believe there is a deeper meaning in the song, as it relates to the King Wen sequence of the YiChing. Within the YiChing there lies much to do with alchemy.
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