on March 16, 2016
If you know anything about translations of the "I Ching", this is the Gold Standard of them all. James Legge has translated the 5 Chinese classics and so much more (the Li Chi, the Book of Poetry, the Texts of Taoism, etc). I was fortunate enough to find his 4 volume "The Chinese Classics" before I went to teach English in China back in 1992 and they were invaluable to framing my understanding of the Chinese mindset and culture (even in this post-Mao era). His 50+ page Introduction is worth the price of the book in itself. I was very glad I found a hardback copy of the book, as this would be one paperback I would wear out.
on July 13, 2008
I am not an afficianado of the written word. I am not sure I even spelled that one right. However I have been using James Legge's translation of the I Ching since 1975. I never did care whether he used an outdated method of interpretation. Needless to say my copy of the book is in disrepare regardless of the care taken to preserve it. I has been read and re-read until the pages have turned yellow and beyond. I have recently ordered other translations and have been left much less than satisfied. The translation from James Legge is the most clear and concise that I have read. I have found that the more you read the I Ching, the more you understand yourself. Perhaps that is the key. and...Perhaps I will never truly understand everything and have quite frankly have misinterpreted the outcomes on more than one occasion, but I also can say without a doubt that it is usually spot on. All I will advise is to try it, what have you got to lose. Really read it. Don't try to understand it all at once. Just a bit at a time. It's amazing what you will learn. Not just for the oriental's but for the occidental's as well. Change is change no matter who you are, what your religion is, or where you live. Enjoy.
on July 20, 2002
This Dover edition of James Legge's translation of I Ching will definitely not be to the taste of every afficiondo of this ancient work. However, it is really informative and clear in ways that other, more famous or convenient editions, are not. The main difficulties involve a Legge's use of a system of transliteration no longer in use, (having been superceded at least twice in the past century), lack of page headings, an odd layout of footnotes (which begin at the end of each section of text being discussed, and the separation of all commentaries by ancient authors into appendices. If this sounds like a list of complaints, it is not. Most volumes of the I Ching put the various commentaries on each hexagram on the same page as the hexagram and oldest text, creating what is, in fact, a false impression of unity. Although the format is not to modern standards, this volume is very helpful to the understanding of the I Ching in particular, and the history of Chinese thought in general.