Friday, May 11. 2007
A thorough study of the original text of the Yijing should also involve an examination of the variant texts that exist of this classic. It would be a fallacy to think that the Book of Changes never changed; through archaeological excavations we now know that the text of the Yi was not as fixed as many want us to believe. Especially before the Qin dynasty, but also during the Han dynasty, there we versions of the Yijing that are different on many points from the version that we use today. The received version is only a compromise of different schools, it should never be seen as the Yijing, it is just one version of the book. To get a better picture of the Yijing and its language through the ages it is necessary to study the different variant texts alongside with the received text.
We mainly have four variant texts of the Yijing:
For each of these texts it is possible to purchase several books, as I did the last few years. A lot of books are published about the Mawangdui Yijing, but the best studies of it are the following books:
The Fuyang Zhouyi is studied in every detail in
A thorough study of the Xiping Stone Classics Yijing can be found in
The first volume deals in detail with the Shanghai Museum Manuscript.
There is nothing more for me to say. All the variant text convenient together in two volumes, in excellent quality, with interesting articles added. I you have the slightest interest in the variant texts of the Yijing, then what are you waiting for. Buy this book. It is worth the money.
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