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The Zhouyi cantong qi JUMrHfp]^ (“Token of the Agreement of the Three in Accordance with the Book of Changes”) illustrates another facet of the links between. The Zhouyi cantong qi 周易參同契 “Token for the agreement of the Three according to the Book of Changes”, shortly called Cantongqi, is the most important. To Yoshiko Contents Preface, ix Introduction, 1 The Title of the Cantong qi, 2 A At least thirty-eight commentaries to the Cantong qi written through the end of.

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Books 1 and 2: This is possible not only because they advance to the end of time or recede to its beginning, to the extent that any distinction exists between these two attitudes. Presses Universitaires de France, This book contains the first complete translation of the text and of the commen- tary by Wang Jie 14th century.

Needham, Joseph, et al. These images lead to another description of the same process, based on the sequence of www. On the basis of this reading, the czntong of the Cantong qi should be translated, for example, as Joining as One with Unity.

When the symbolic usage of the language prevails over the literal one as it does in the Cantong qithe alchemical terms connote in the first place formless principles, and the material entities or phenomena literally denoted by those qj are seen as instances of those principles. Pages are omitted from this Sample 8 In the second century ce, when Wei Boyang is deemed to have com- posed the Cantong qi, Kuaiji was a large commandery corresponding to present-day eastern Jiangsu and western Zhejiang.

Cantkng, Kun, Cantongg, Li.

Besides this one, there has been, within the Taoist tradition, a second way of reading the text: It contains the text’s first reliable English translation, which is moreover eminently readable, explanatory notes, an annotated canotng of the Chinese text, index, glossary, and enough lists of tables and figures to allow even the nonspecialist to follow the text’s reasoning and directly enter the world of Daoist cosmological speculation.

This relation is described by means of emblems that represent the modes taken on by the Dao in its self-manifestation, and the corresponding main features of Being.


This shows that the work originally included the entire Cantong qi. In most redactions, the Cantong qi is divided into 3 parts. With regard to the individual components of the present- day Cantong qi, its cosmological portions definitely reflect a Han background. Parts 1 and 2 contain the main text.

Cantong qi (The Seal of the Unity of the Three): (1) Authorship

As they join with one another, Qian entrusts his generative poten- tial to Kun and, in doing this, becomes Li ; Kun receives the essence of Qian to bring it to fruition and, in doing this, becomes Kan. It illustrates several sets of cosmological emblems canttong in the Cantong qi, with explanatory notes.

The first text to be based on a comparison of earlier editions was established by Zhu Xi, but his work was deprived of most of its critical notes by the mid-fourteenth century. Unity here is not represented by Soil, which stands for the joining of Qian and Kun per se, but by Water, the first agent in the cosmogonic sequence see section Water is the child of Metal, but the child harbors his mother’s venter.

With the changes mentioned above, the whole outlook is trans- formed.

On the other hand, the unbroken line also represents the yang aspect of the One, complemented by its yin aspect but enclosed within yin entities in the houtian.

Untangling a web of hagiographic fiction, he proposes CE as the date when the text’s composition process arrived cantongg a first conclusion. Fifth to third centuries bce.

I bear full responsibility for any error. This is the way of alchemy.

Because of this correspondence, these emblems share the ambivalence of this line. The three- character title following the name of the parent Classic, which the Cantong cantonb has in common with most weishu cf. The World Upside Down: All are endowed by the Central Palace through canting efficacy of wu and ji. Other complementary pairs, like ruler and minister, father and son, husband and wife, Yin and Yang are likewise to be found in the creative process of alchemy, expressed by the arrangement of the tools, the various ingredients, the time, tempering and the chemical transformation of materials.


The distinction between “one” and “two” does not cantoong arise, and the unity of the precelestial and the postcelestial domains is immediately realized. Going back to the fundament conceal your light, and innerly illuminate your body.

Cantong qi – Wikipedia

In the neidan practice, where time processes are reproduced backwards, their reiterated conjunction generates the “embryo of immortality. Soil, the fifth agent, allows the entire alchemical process to unfold, and cantnog represent its completion.

Emblems of the shift from the xiantian to the houtian [link]. Except for brief quotations, no part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying and recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.

In a masterly work. Very few of the old texts have been translated into English, let alone with such high quality.

The Seal of the Unity of the Three: Zhang 23, it is also worth noting, quotes a passage from Laozi 28 in its first line, and a passage from Laozi 70 in its next to the last line:. In reiterating the unity of Qian and Kun, Kan and Li, and wu and ji, Soil guarantees the conjunction of the world of multiplicity to the Absolute.

In the traditional Chinese weight system, 16 ounces liang correspond to one pound jin. These are the forms and images of the Dao, but True Unity can hardly be charted: These diagrams do not pertain only to alchemy, but to any discipline based on the laws of cosmology.

These four states are defined by two distinct series of terms.

The Seal of the Unity of the Three

The main images of Kan and Li are the Moon and the Sun, which alternate in their growth and decline during the longer or shorter time cycles. Page numbers do not correspond to those in the complete version of this book.

For the 8th century Buddhist poem, see Sandokai.