for ssaattbb (2023)
for ssaattbb (2023)
Texts are derived from Qingjing Jing
sān zhě jì wù,wéi jiàn yú kōng
He who awakens to these three*,they see only emptiness.
guān kōng yì kōng, kōng wú suǒ kōng
They observe that this emptiness is also empty,yet the emptiness has nothing which is empty.
suǒ kōng jì wú, wú wú yì wú
Since the emptiness is empty, that which is not empty is also empty.
wú wú jì wú zhàn rán cháng jì
Since what is not empty is empty, there is clarity and constant tranquility.
jì wú suǒ jì, yù qǐ néng shēng
Since this tranquility has nothing which is tranquil, what can give birth to desires?
yù jì bù sheng, jí shì zhēn jìng
Since desires are unborn, this is itself true stillness,
zhēn cháng yìng wù zhēn cháng dé xìng
true constant response to phenomena, true constant attainment and abiding.
cháng yìng cháng jìng cháng qīng jìng yǐ
With constant response and constant stillness, this is indeed constant purity and stillness!
*”Three”: (mind, outer form, external phenomena)
The Qingjing Jing is a short, mostly versified text comprising some 390 Chinese characters in 90 verses. It is widely read, has numerous commentaries, and is considered one of the most important texts in the Taoist religion.
This composition draws inspiration from the revered Qingjing Jing, specifically from sixteen verses in the middle. The translated essence of these verses highlights the profound realization that the three realms (mind, outer form, external phenomena) are fundamentally empty, leading to a perception of ultimate emptiness. Within this emptiness, a tranquil clarity emerges, free from desires. This state of stillness embodies constant purity and unwavering attunement to phenomena. Through music, I aim to capture and evoke this sense of profound wisdom and enlightenment and stillness found within the Qingjing Jing.
Commissioned by National Youth Choir with kind support from Dorico
(National Youth Choir's Principal Innovation Sponsor).
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