Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Walking the Circle

"Hidden in a remote corner of Beijing's Ditan ("Temple of the Earth") Park is a small area with gongfu enthusiasts practicing their eight directions exercises. The men (and all visitors to this area seem to be men) balance precariously on a series of bricks and stones, carefully stepping from one to the next, the best proponents able to make many rounds."
- Xiaming, Flickr Photos and Notes

Walking the Circle.

Ba Gua Zhang is an internal martial arts style that involves dodging attacks and attacking while moving in complex circular patterns. A few practice Bagua Zhang while walking in a circle and stepping from post to post which are set in the ground in a circular pattern; or, walking on the ground between large posts sent in the ground in a circular or figure eight pattern.

Walking in circles for meditative focus is also part of the labyrinth traditions.

The symbolism of the eight trigrams also has relevance in this context.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Chinese Sabers

A reader send me the follwing email:

"About the Chinese Sabers .. . I have attached a picture of a saber?! That was "passedon to me." Are you able to tell me more about it, and whether it is worth me getting it restored ,and where in the UK is the best place to do it? Thank you kindly. I have learned more about Chinese swords in the last hour reading your webpage than I could ever have imagined."
- JC, England, 11/29/05

I am not qualified to answer your questions. I suggest writing to some of the experts, like Scott Rodell, and seeking some advice. Do some Internet searching for leads to sword/saber restorers in your area, and do some phone work through telephone directories. Mostly European swordplay in your area, but some of these people will be able to help.

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Monday, November 28, 2005

Non-Interfering Awareness

"Because self-actualizing people ordinarily do not have to abstract need-gratifying qualities nor see the person as a tool, it is much more possible for them to take a non-valuing, non-judging, non-interfering, non-condemning attitude towards others, a desirelessness, a 'choiceless awareness.' " ... This kind of detached, Taoist, passive, non-interfering awareness of all the simultaneous existing aspects of the concrete, has much in common with some descriptions of the aesthetic experience and of the mystic experience."
- Abraham Maslow, Toward a Psychology of Being, 1962, p. 38

Both Taijiquan and Qigong emphasize cultivating this type of neutral, clear, open, aware, and engaged state of consciousness while practicing mind-body arts.

Taoism: Links, Bibliography, Resources

Saturday, November 26, 2005

The Great Bear Moves Again

"Taiji Quan movements evolved from this ancient lumbering gait of a bear, unfortunately due to the linguistic drift and misinterpretation, the Great Bear Polar Circle remains hidden for most practitioners. If one retraced to an older practice of the Five Animal Frolics, one can still see the original lumbering Gait of a black bear frolic swaying side to side. If Taiji Quan did evolve from the Five Animal Frolics then the Taiji form must contain within its structure a Bear movement. Such discovery re-connects me to the ancient Complete Reality Sect of Taoist Ritual and opens my eyes to the depth of Taiji practice. That the very functioning of the Taiji form is a shamanistic journey of recreating the Heavenly drama of the Ursula Major constellation which contained the Big Dipper. With the Great Bear Rite as part of my practice of Taiji movements, this transported my consciousness to a level that is universal. My body became part of the Cosmos. The movements took on a numinous quality."
- Sat Chuen Hon, The Great Bear Star Steps

Friday, November 25, 2005

Life Energy

"The form of energy composing the chakras and currents in the subtle body is unknown to science. The Hindus call it prana, which means literally "life" - that is "life-force." The Chinese call it chi, the Polynesians mana, the Amerindians orenda, and the ancient Germans od. It is an all-pervasive "organic" energy. In modern times, the pyschiatrist Wilhelm Reich attempted to resuscitate this notion in his concept of the orgone, but he met with hostility from the scientific establishment. More recently, Russian parapsychologists have introduced the notion of bioplasma, which is explained as a radiant energy field interpenetrating physical organisms."
- Georg Feuerstein, "Yoga: The Technology of Ecstasy," 1989, p.258.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Standing Like a Tree

"This posture is often called the "Wu Ji" posture in Taijiquan. It is the resting position, the position before any motion begins, a state of "grand emptiness." It is the primordial condition - empty, free, motionless, without qualities. It precedes the movement of Yin/Yang both logically and temporally. The classics talk of Wu Ji giving birth to Taiji, emptiness transforming itself into the manifold of cyclic dualities. Our course, our bodies are never completely at rest: our hearts contract and relax, our blood moves up and down, we breath in and out, our two feet and two arms help keep us in balance as we stand, our mind may be calm and focused but billions of neurons are quite busy in our brains creating that phenomenon we directly apprehend as consciousness. So, the "Wu Ji" state of this posture is more symbolic, allegorical, or figuratively interpreted. Students should note that this posture is very similar to the Yoga posture of Tadasana - the Mountain Pose. We should stand like a Mountain: strong, stable, unmoving, grand, still, aloof, above the mundane, powerful, accepting but unbroken by the storms of ideas, and avalanches of strong emotions and real worries. "
- Michael P. Garofalo, The Eight Section Brocade Qigong

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The Arrow's Gone Past Already

Zen's Chinese Heritage: The Masters and Their Teachings.
By Andy Ferguson. Foreword by Reb Anderson.
Boston, Wisdom Publications, 2000. Glossaries, name lists, bibliography, index, 518 pages. ISBN: 0861711637.

A monk asked, "What is Tongan's arrow?"
Daopi said, "Look behind you."
The monk asked, "What's back there?"
Daopi said, "It's gone past already."
- Zen's Chinese Heritage, p. 257

I started reading the literature of Zen when I was fifteen. 45 years later, I still can sit up straight after grappling with a clever retort, a puzzling non-sequitur, a zany twist on some allusion, a bold example, an illogical brain-lock, or a slap of cold water on the face provided by a confident Zen man. I still like to smile when pondering the mystery of whatever "It" is. I treasure the Chan playfulness, practicality, humor, and seriousness.

Anyone studying Taijiquan and Qigong will quickly come into contact with the legends and lore of Taoism and Chan Buddhism (Zen). A quick look at the sidebar on this blog points to some of my own studies in these areas.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Bagua Zhang - Eight Trigrams Boxing

"Baguazhang (Emei Baguazhang): Theory and Applications."
By Liang, Master Shou-Yu, and Wu, Wen-Ching, and Yang, Jwing-Ming.
YMAA Publication Center, 1994. 364 pages. ISBN: 0940871300.

Instructional videotape also available.
Chinese Internal Martial Arts.

Excellent introduction to the subject. Includes many translations of seminal Baguazhang texts and sayings. Index, glossary, appendices, lists of movements. Another excellent YMAA publication. This text includes many detailed charts of Baguazhang lineages.

One reader is of the opinion that the "8 palms Master Liang presents comprises the basic Baguazhang set that seems to have been taught at the Central Kuoshu Institute at Nanking. The lineage is Fu Chen-Sung's, and the form is also known by the name of 'Old Eight Palms.' ... The "Swimming Dragon" form presented seems to have come from Sun Lu Tang's lineage."

Monday, November 21, 2005

Cloud Hands Website Usage in 2005

The statistics for October usage at shows that readers around the world requested 144,910 webpages excluding graphics files (.jpg and .gif).

For the 2005 year, based on statistical analysis, sent out the following number of webpages:

Mind-Body Arts
Cloud Hands: Tai Chi Chuan and Qigong Website
Yoga, Meditation, and Fitness Websites
903,600 webpages in 2005

Months Website and Green Way Blog
602,400 webpages in 2005

Total for in webpages served:
1,506,000 webpages in 2005

I estimate that the Cloud Hands: Taijiquan and Qigong Website will have served 1,240,000 webpages to people around the world from January 1, 2003 until December 31, 2005.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Taijiquan Glossary

"Dear Mike, Great site! I have been trying to find an English-Chinese character glossary of the T'ai Chi movements. Do you know of any that might be found on-line? I have bought a Chinese book on t'ai chi but it is difficult to reconcile the terms with English (or French!) ones. Thanks in advance, and once more for the terrific website."
- Deborah K. F., 11/18/05


I enjoyed the book by Jane Schorre, "How to Grasp the Bird's Tail if You Don't Speak Chinese." Calligraphy by Margaret Chang. Berkeley, California, North Atlantic Books, 1997. 115 pages. ISBN: 1556433360.

There are many excellent English-Chinese glossaries in the great books by Yang Jwing-Ming, YMAA Publications.

For an on-line resource take a look at: Magic Tortoise.

Best wishes for a fine autumn,

Mike Garofalo

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Eight Section Brocade

In 1973, archeologists in China excavated the tomb of king Ma who lived in the Western Han Dynasty (206 BC - 24 AD). In this tomb at Mawangdui, on the outskirts of the city of Changsha in Hunan Province, they discovered medical manuals, compilations, and a silk scroll on which were drawn 44 humans in various poses or postures. Under each pose, or Dao-yin diagram, was a caption with the name of an animal or the name of the disease that the posture might help cure. A number of the postures in the Dao-yin Tu closely resemble some in the Eight Section Brocade (The Wonders of Qigong, 1985, pp. 13-17).

Friday, November 18, 2005

Chang San-Feng's Treatise on T'ai Chi Ch'uan

Master Chang San-Feng’s Treatise on T’ai Chi Ch’uan, Part 1
A Taijiquan Classic by Zhang San-feng, circa 1200 CE:

“With every movement string all the parts together, keeping the entire body light and nimble. ”
- Stuart Olson

“In any action, the whole body should be light and agile, or Ching and Lin. One should feel that all of the body’s joints are connected with full linkage. ”
-Jou, Tsung Hwa

“Once in motion, every part of the body is light and agile and must bethreaded together. ”
- Yang, Jwing-Ming

“Whenever one moves, the entire body must be light and lively, and must above all be connected throughout. ”
- Barbara Davis

“Once you begin to move, the entire body must be light and limber. Each part of your body should be connected to every other part.”
- Liao, Waysun

“Move in an agile, balanced, and coordinated manner.
Once you decide to move,
The parts of the body should act together:
Feeling connected and coordinated,
As balanced as two feathers on a scale,
Strung together like pearls in a necklace,
Agile like a cat,
Lighter than moonbeams,
Mobile as a young monkey.”
- Michael Garofalo

- Master Chang San-Feng’s Principles of T’ai Chi Ch’uan.

“While making a stride, it is as quietly as a cat walks, and while putting forth strength the exertion is so mild, that it looks like reeling off raw silk from a cocoon. The movements, like clouds floating in the sky, are spry and light, but well-balanced and steady. Motion is even and fluid, the muscles neither stiff nor rigid. Breathing should be deep and even … the mind is tranquil but alert, with consciousness commanding thebody. In practicing T’ai Chi Chuan it is essential that movements be guided by consciousness and that there be stillness in movement - a unity of stillness and motion.”
- Official Chinese Instruction Manual for the “24 Movement Yang Short Form,”quoted by Howard Reid in his book The Way of Harmony, p. 90.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Yang Style Taijiquan Long Form

If you are learning the Yang Style Taijiquan long form, you might find the following webpage of use to you as you study and practice:

Yang Family Style Tai Chi Chuan Traditional Long Form
By Michael P. Garofalo.
This webpage provides a list and brief description of the 108 movements of the Yang Style Taijiquan Long Form divided into five sections for teaching (.html and .pdf versions available). The webpage includes an extensive bibliography on the subject, scores of Internet links, historical notes, and quotations. 120Kb.

The Yang Long Form discussed on this webpage conforms to the form developed by Yang Cheng-Fu (1883-1936) and documented in books by Bu Fu Zongwen (1903-1994) and Yang Zhenduo. The numbering of the movements varies from author to author, but the essential sequence and moves remains the same.

Sung: Open, Relaxed, Loose, Flexible, Flowing

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Northwest Coast Taiji News

December 3-10, 2005 Chinese Shamanic Qigong and Taiji Workshop. Led by Master Wu-Zhongxian. Workshop in Portland, Oregon.

Wu Zhongxian, Master. Chinese Shamanic Qigong and Taiji. P.O. Box 42366, Portland, Oregon. 503-936-3390 Email:

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Northern California Taiji News

November 18-21st, 2005. The Eighth World Congress on Qigong and the Eighth American Qigong Conference will hold a joint convention this November at the Golden Gateway Holiday Inn in San Francisco. The theme of this year's event is "Qigong for Individual and Planetary Health: An Essential Balance."

Shaman, Allan Michael. Tai Chi Chuan Teacher, recently moved to San Francisco. Thirty plus years experience in Tai Chi Chuan and Qigong in US and Asia. Teaches Indoor Yang Style, Cheng Hsin Tui Shou, San Shou, Wu Qin Xi (5 Animal Frolics), Wuxiang Qigong, Tai Chi Sword & Saber.

Monday, November 14, 2005


"The first level of stillness is about being with yourself in order to know yourself. This is accomplished by being wide awake and aware as you deliberately relax into yourself. The idea is to consciously enter into a state wherein you temporarily suspend everything you think you know about who you are, including anything you have ever been taught, and simply be attentive to what's going on right there where you are. You practice being quiet, both physically and mentally, as you pay attention to the sensations in your body, the various thoughts in your mind, and your current experience of being conscious and alive. You practice simple body-mind awareness, being conscious of the moment you are now in, and thereby experience with clarity the energy of you. You consciously experience yourself as you actually are. In this way you open yourself to a new, truer, less distorted experience of you and the world."

- Erich Schiffmann, Yoga: The Spirit and Practice of Moving Into Stillness, 1996, p. 7.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Weekend Workshop: Mat Pilates - Breathing Out

I attended the AFAA (American Fitness Association of America) weekend workshop on Practical Mat Pilates. The workshop was from 9-6 pm at the California Family Fitness gym in Roseville. Roseville is 20 miles west of Sacramento.

Carlos Requejo, an experienced and highly qualified master trainer, taught us 26 basic Pilates exercises, led two workouts, and provided us with very good individual tips on the movements. We learned a great deal about the kineseology of the movements.

Pilates emphasizes breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth. The exhalation should be a bit more forceful. One should exhale like they were blowing out a candle, blowing up a balloon, fogging a mirror, or hissing in the back of the throat. It is like "warriors breath" in yoga. The idea is to engage the deepest transverse abdominals and rectus abdominis when you exhale.

There are numerous specialized systems for breathing in Chinese Qigong.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Chi - Energy

"The form of energy composing the chakras and currents in the subtle body is unknown to science. The Hindus call it prana, which means literally "life" - that is "life-force." The Chinese call it ch'i, the Polynesians mana, the Amerindians orenda, and the ancient Germans od. It is an all-pervasive "organic" energy. In modern times, the pyschiatrist Wilhelm Reich attempted to resuscitate this notion in his concept of the orgone, but he met with hostility from the scientific establishment. More recently, Russian parapsychologists have introduced the notion of bioplasma, which is explained as a radiant energy field interpenetrating physical organisms."- Georg Feuerstein, "Yoga: The Technology of Ecstasy," 1989, p.258.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Saber (Broadsword, Dao) Swordsmanship

"The single edged, curved bladed dao, or saber, dates from around the 13th -14th centuries. The curved blade was introduced to China as a result of the Mongol invasions, and its popularity is shown by the fact that it had eclipsed the straight bladed jian as the dominant military side arm from the 15th century onward. The "willow leaf" (liu ye) dao is an old blade pattern which displays considerable variety in shape and dimensions. Generally averaging about 26 -30 inches in length, its blade curves gently throughout its entire length. The blade may remain almost the same width for its whole length, or it may gradually taper towards the point. It often had a sharpened back edge, indicating a higher degree of sophistication in its technical usage. A military issue weapon, its blade shape, size, types of fittings and ornamentation were regulated by documented imperial specifications. Each blade size was intended for a specific military application. For example, a relatively short dao might be used by vanguard troops scaling walls on climbing ladders, where a long, difficult to draw sword would be awkward to put into use. The willow leaf saber was almost completely eclipsed by the "oxtail" blade pattern made for civilian use by the mid 19th century."

- David F. Dolbear, Introduction to Antique Chinese Swords of the Qing Dynasty Period

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Push Hands (Tui Shou)

"Push Hands is a relaxed, two-person sparring exercise that one may begin upon completion the Tai Chi Short Form. It may be considered as the bridge between the Form and fighting practice. Three specific techniques are emphasized: sticking--maintaining light contact with an opponent; listening--sensing the magnitude and direction of an opponent's force; andyielding--responding to an opponent's force partially by giving way, and partially by controlling or guiding its direction. The ultimate goal of the training is to reduce the amount of force needed to neutralize attacks, so that one may defeat speed and strength with skill."
- Chu Tai Chi, New York

Tai Chi For Arithritis

Robin Malby writes:

"For all of you who expressed an interest or signed up for Dr. Paul Lam's Tai Chi for Arthritis Teacher Training this past July in Pleasant Hill, even though that one was canceled, another workshop has been scheduled for April 1 and 2, 2006, at Pleasant Hill Community Center, 320 Civic Drive, Pleasant Hill, Ca. 94523.

Master Trainer Troyce Thome, from Southern California, will be flying up to conduct this level one and level two training. She is a highly qualified and experienced instructor. I will be assisting her with teaching and demonstrating and we both look forward to working with those of you who decide to attend.

You will soon receive a flyer in the mail with more information. If you are interested and wish to be included on the mailing list so I can send you registration materials as the April dates get closer, please contact me.

Thank you,

Robin Malby
(925) 672-4315"

In the Cloud Hands blog and website, I focus on Taijiquan and Qigong workshops, events, seminars, and training programs in Northern California, Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia. I maintain a directory to resources in this area of the United States.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Taiji Sword (Jian)

"Professor Cheng said that the Tai Chi Chuan he practiced was like a tripod: the form, push hands, and the sword. The goal of swordplay is to combine our Tai Chi quality of stable, heavy rootedness with rapid movement. Be as solid as a tree but quick as a cat. Work to develop a sense of root even when the form has you leaping off the ground. The ch'i sets the sword in motion. After that, like a hawk sailing on wind currents, let the sword ride the currents of gravity and centrifugal force."
- Wolfe Lowenthal, Gateway to the Miraculous, 1994, p. 26.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Sung: Relaxed, Loose, Open

"First, last, and always the student must relax. Various calisthenics aid him in achieving this. All rigidity and strength must be emptied from the upper torso andmust sink to the very soles of the feet, one of which is always firmly rooted to theground. Without proper relaxation the student can never hope to achieve thetrueness of the T'ai-chi postures. The student relaxes completely and breathes as a child - naturally through the nose, the diaphragm being aided by the abdominalrather than the intercostal muscles. Man's intrinsic energy, the ch'i, should bestored just below the navel. The mind directs this energy throughout the bodyaccording to need. But the ch'i cannot circulated in an unrelaxed body."

- Robert W. Smith, Chinese Boxing: Masters and Methods, 1974, p. 26.

Sung: Relaxed, Loose, Open, Soft, Fluid Links, bibliography, quotes, notes.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Touch the Root of Heaven

Breathing Out -
Touching the Root of Heaven,
One's heart opens;
The Dragon slips into the water..
Breathing In -
Standing on the Root of Earth,
One's heart is still and deep;
The Tiger's claw cannot be moved.

"As you go on breathing in this frame of mind, with these associations, alternating between movement and stillness, it is important that the focus of your mind doesnot shift. Let the true breath come and go, a subtle continuum on the brink of existence. Tune the breathing until you get breath without breathing; become one with it, and then the spirit can be solidified and the elixir can be made."
- Chang San-Feng
Commentary on Ancestor Lu's Hundred-Character Tablet
Translated by Thomas Cleary
Vitality, Energy, Spirit: A Taoist Sourcebook, 1991, p. 187.

Poetic interpretation by Mike Garofalo of expository text of Chang San-Feng.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Sun Style Tai Chi Chuan

“In regards to the practice of Taijiquan, Sun Lu Tang often said that his teacher, Master HaoWei Zhen, would say there were three levels of development in the training of Taijiquan. The following are the three levels often mentioned by Master Sun:
“In the initial stages of practiceone will feel as if walking on the floor of the ocean. The movements will feel heavy as if all thewater was pressing down on the body.
The second stage feels as if the feet are not touchingthe floor bottom, but the body is floating within the water. The movements of Taijiquan willfeel more natural at this stage.
The third stage is when the body is light and agile where onewill feel as if walking on the oceans surface. At this stage achievement in Taijiquan hasbeen obtained”.
- A Brief Introduction to Sun Style Tai Chi Chuan,
Sun Jian Yun (1913-2003),Translated by Ted Knecht

Sun Style Taijiquan: Links, Bibliography, Quotes, Notes, Biography of Sun Lu Tang

Sung: Relaxed, Loose, Easy, Open, Smooth, Flowing.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Green Way

I frequently add notes about Tai Chi Chuan and Qigong to my blog titled Green Way which includes information, comments, quotes, links and bibliographic references on the following subjects: gardening, mind-body arts, Green philosophy, Zen, short poems, mysticism, wizardry, religions, Taoism, Yoga, meditation, and other subjects of interest to me. Therefore, there is a some overlap between the Cloud Hands blog and the Green Way blog.

Generally, my style of working is to keep my daily notes, research, ideas, and comments in my Valley Spirit Journal. I write this using Microsoft FrontPage, store my working files on my computer, and then upload every so often to the Green Way Research website. I back up locally to a CD. I can work on-line or off-line while using FrontPage. I then cut and past text from the Valley Spirit Journal into the Word Press (Green Way) or Blogger (Cloud Hands) text editor on-line. I think the Blogger text editor is better than the Word Press text editor.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

The Roots of Taijiquan - Taoism

Websites and Blogs about Taoism

All Taijiquan and Qigong practitioners learn about the main concepts of Taoism, Chan (Zen Buddhism), and traditional Chinese medicine as they advance in their practice and understanding of these mind-body arts. These viewpoints and practices are intertwined with each other, support each other, and nourish each other like the interlaced roots in a great redwood grove. To truly practice Taijiquan, the Grand Ultimate internal martial art, is to follow the Tao (the Way), understand the interplay of Yin and Yang, and to seek to harmonize the body-mind-spirit in a higher synthesis of the Active Imagination (Carl Jung).

For today, read: Tai Chi and Taoist Thought By Kyle Weaner.

Alchemical Taoism Some detail on the Microcosmic Orbits.

Architecture at Wudang Shan

British Taoist Association

Chad Hansen's Chinese Philosophy Page

Chang San-Feng

China Related Links

Chinese Philosophy Page

Chinese Religions Links By Joseph Adler, Department of Religious Studies, Kenyon College.

Chuang Tsu (Zhuang Zi) Translated by Lin Yutang. 165 Kb.

Chuang Tsu (Zhuang Zi) Translated by Burton Watson. 110Kb.

Chuang Tzu

The Golden Elixir

How to Overcome Without Fighting

Hsing Chen Internal Arts

Hua Hu Ching

I Ching

International Taoist Tai Chi Society

Lieh-Tsu Translated by Lionel Giles. 148Kb.


Tai Chi and Taoist Thought By Kyle Weaner.

Taoism and the Philosophy of T'ai Chi Ch'uan

Taoism: Bibliography and Links

Taoism Information Page Includes a number of translations of essential texts.

Taoism - Sinophilia

The Taoist Blog

Taoist Canon

Taoist Immortals

Taoist Scriptures An excellent collection of translations.

Tao of Sean

Tao Te Ching Translated by J. McDonald. 54Kb.

Tao Te Ching

The Useless Tree

Learn More Everyday!

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Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Lao Tsu's "Tao Te Ching"

Tim Chilcott wrote to me yesterday about his new translation:

"I'm pleased to say that a new translation of one of the central texts in world religion and philosophy is now on-line, and can be read at The work is Laozi's Daode jing (or, as it still often transliterated, Lao Tzu's Tao te Ching). Whether interpreted as a book of religious teachings, or a political or sociological treatise, or a personal philosophical guide, the Chinese text has been translated more often than any book apart from the Bible; and this new version develops the experiment in translation that was initiated in 2004 with Matsuo's Basho's Oku no hosomichi [The Narrow Road to the Far North].

The presentation of the material follows the pattern of previous translations on the site: an Introduction that explores some of the special issues raised in translating the Daode jing, a Chronology of possible composition and promulgation, a Note on the Transliteration of Chinese characters, the Text itself (with original characters and pinyin romanisation on verso pages, and the translation on facing recto pages), and a section pointing to Further Reading and Internet Links. As ever, any comments you may have, whether critical or commendatory, will be appreciated."