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The Secret of the Golden Flower: The Classical Chinese Book of Life
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The Secret of the Golden Flower: The Classical Chinese Book of Life

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  112 ratings  ·  10 reviews
This is a translation of T'ai-i chin-hua tsung-chih, a late 18th-century Chinese meditation text falsely attributed to the shadowy 9th-century figure Lü Yen. A late expression of Chin-tan ("Golden Elixir") Taoism, it teaches manipulation of internal forces ("light") to achieve revitalization and spiritual rebirth. The work became famous in the West when Richard Wilhelm tra ...more
Paperback, 1st edition, 160 pages
Published March 12th 1993 by HarperOne (first published December 1st 1991)
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Peter Todesco
The best translation of this great mystical classic! It changed my life forever. I am working now as meditation teacher and therefore I created a new transcription: the extremely valuable explanations and comments by Thomas Cleary are placed now following the original text directly after each section as footnote. This helps incredibly the immediate understanding of this practice! ( contact me if you are interested - - ) My transcription can help you for the ...more
Robert Marshall
I just finished reading this book and am not sure how to take it. The premise is good, but I'm left confused on what is the actual translated text, and what is Clearys own materials. I also purchased the Richard Wilhelm/Baynes version and will read that once it arrives.

Early on in this translation I started having doubts on Clearys intent. In the intro he constantly belittles the Wilhelm/Baynes translation, while at the same time thanking Wilhelm for introducing the text to the West. He also tha
Cipriana Leme
If Wilhelm had not written his interpretation of the I-Ching (preface by Jung, also), I would never have discovered this fascinating way of life that has also become MY way of life. Ive read this book dozens of times and always have in near, just in case. ...more
This is a collection of the teachings of Taoism in
the form of poetry. It is written beautifully and the teachings still apply to life today. It is available at the Geisel library. I remember that when I carried this book around with me, strangers would start conversations with me about the book, and more than once, I was asked if that was the first book I had read on Taoism. What I learned from this book: It is ok to just simply be.
Not bad as a meditation manual and all, but Jiminy Cricket, people!

...Trying to find workable English/Chinese translations is like reclining in a lawnchair next to collapsing train tracks with popcorn in one hand and a time dilation device in the other, listening for the impending whistles and bells.
Stephen Dorman
Worth it for the articulation of the Host/Guest alone (which is in the Afterword). Cleary's knowledge and experience of Zen and Taoist praxis informs his "notes" and they are an invaluable guide to the text itself.

A true classic of simplicity.
The poetry and symbolism in this ancient text shed light in my life during a shadowy time. Real transformational symbolism.
Great little manual of meditation and philosophy. Each time you read it you are sure to discover something new.
I've found that Thomas Cleary's translation to be lacking in vitality.
Barrett  Dylan Brown
Jul 21, 2008 Barrett Dylan Brown rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Seekers on The Path.
Mmmmmmm. Spiritual.
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