bilingual version with chinese original and english translation
Laozi (571-472 BC), the author of Daode Jing, is a philosopher in Spring and Autumn period and the founder of Daoist school. According to the biography of The Record of the Great Historian, Laozi surnames Li, first names Er and styles Dan. Some Daoist books take Dan as his posthumous name and Boyang as his honorific name. Some scholar say Lao is his family name, Dan is his first name and his honorific name is Boyang. He was born in some place close to Luyi County, Henan Province. His official position in Zhous court is on the duty of both the imperial library and archive bureau. Laozi departed from Zhou when he witnessed the elapse of imperial power. It is said that he left the five-thousand word book which latterly named after him at the request of the pass keeper Yun Xin at Hangu Pass where leads to the Silk Road.
In Daode Jing, Laozi established a philosophy centered on Dao. He refers Dao as the extraordinary Way, which transcends but indwells everything. Dao is the origin of the world and Dao is preexistent. The Dao gives birth to the one, and the one gives birth to the two, the two give birth to the three and three gives birth to the myriad of things. Related to Dao, De is the manifestations and realizations of Dao in the world including the humans.
Laozi presents his thought in a style of dialectics, he tends to articulate Dao in twin categories, for example, the beauty and ugliness, blessing and disaster, softness and hardness, yin and yang, etc. His principles, including respect of nature, striving for inner purity, and reduction of personal desire, have been important idealistic goals for Chinese people for tens of centuries.
After the religious tradition was introduced at the turn between the first and the second century, Laozi has been venerated as the Lord, and Daode Jing has been canonized and theologically expounded as the most important sutra.
Daode Jing has been reprinted and commented for formidable times in China. Furthermore, it has been translated most widely only second to the Bible in the modern world. It is taking up its influence on the globe today.
This bi-lingual version of Daode Jing is illustrated with a lot of ancient paintings and murals which either are related to the ideas of Dao or are directly the descriptions of the immortals. This is our special offerings with this book. In this way, we hope we can share the aesthetical senses, enhance the enlightenment, and increase the reading fun of Daode Jing.
Let us join the pure, silent, natural, ethereal and beautiful tour of Daode Jing.