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Chinese, Chinese Culture, Culture, legend, People, Story

The Story of Laozi – Purple Light Rays Illuminated from the East

During the Eastern Zhou Dynasty (770 B.C. – 256 B.C.,) Yin Xi was the Prefect and a local man of Hangu Pass, the Far Western region outpost in China.
One morning, Yin Xi looked toward the East into the distance from a high-earthen platform in front of his house. Looking over at the rays of sunlight shone through multihued clouds from the opposite bank of the river source, a wheel of the red morning sun with all its dazzling rays gushed—this was basically a natural phenomenon., Yin Xi, who was adept in interpreting astrological signs, found something unusual. Ahead of the red sunshine, the entangled conglomerate purple rays were slowly moving westward, along the Hong Nong River, at the south shore of the Yellow River. The more the gradual agglomeration of the purple color the denser it filled among the multiple ranges of hills and mountain peaks. When the rosy clouds were slowly rising, the scenery was exceedingly beautiful and majestic. As Yin Xi observed the celestial phenomena, he extemporarily cast the Eight Trigrams of The I-Ching (The Book of Changes.) After carefully studied the Trigrams, he could not help being joyful with ecstasy. The interpretation was, “An extraordinary man would be passing through here when the purple rays beamed from the East.” Hence, he hurriedly got off from the earthen platform, and instructed his vassals to clean up the courtyard and the streets, preparing to welcome the Holy Man. Furthermore, he told the gatekeepers that they should invite anyone who appeared to be unusual to stay, the guest should be made feeling at home, and also report to him at once. After all arrangements were made, Yin Xi bathed and changed clothing, awaited for the arrival of the Saint.

Li Er, also known as Laozi, who lived around 600 B.C., was the Zhu Xia Shi, then, the Keeper of Archives in the Eastern Zhou court (equivalent to today’s Chief Librarian at the National Library). For his disappointment in the corruptive Central Government, and the competing regional warlords, he resigned from his job in the court. He left Luoyang, contemplated passing through Hangu Pass, and headed west to lead a hermit’s life. Riding backward on a young ox’s back, he looked radiant, and energetic, with shining white hair and long beards.

Laozi approached the Hangu Pass. The Gatekeepers saw that this man was out of the ordinary and instantly reported to the Commander, Yin Xi, who went to the front gate of the Pass without delay upon receiving the news. Laozi was ushered to a guest lodge, and they dined together. The two chatted during the meal and they conversed very congenially. The landscape along the Hangu Pass was naturally beautiful, and Laozi agreed to stay at the earnest request from Yin Xi. Laozi finished writing the splendid 5,000 words, “The Tao Te Ching,” at the Hangu Pass before leaving for the West.

Later generations built The Taichu Palace (Taichu Palace means the ultimate primordial palace in Chinese), where Laozi wrote, “The Tao Te Ching.” They also built The Purple Outlook Pavilion, where Yin Xi had observed, “The Purple Rays Illuminated from the East.”

– Source: The Epochtimes


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