The Journey to the West, Volume 2 (Revised Edition)
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Anthony C. Yu’s translation of The Journey to the West, initially published in 1983, introduced English-speaking audiences to the classic Chinese novel in its entirety for the first time. Written in the sixteenth century, The Journey to the West tells the story of the fourteen-year pilgrimage of the monk Xuanzang, one of China’s most famous religious heroes, and his three supernatural disciples, in search of Buddhist scriptures. Throughout his journey, Xuanzang fights demons who wish to eat him, communes with spirits, and traverses a land riddled with a multitude of obstacles, both real and fantastical. An adventure rich with danger and excitement, this seminal work of the Chinese literary canonis by turns allegory, satire, and fantasy.
With over a hundred chapters written in both prose and poetry, The Journey to the West has always been a complicated and difficult text to render in English while preserving the lyricism of its language and the content of its plot. But Yu has successfully taken on the task, and in this new edition he has made his translations even more accurate and accessible. The explanatory notes are updated and augmented, and Yu has added new material to his introduction, based on his original research as well as on the newest literary criticism and scholarship on Chinese religious traditions. He has also modernized the transliterations included in each volume, using the now-standard Hanyu Pinyin romanization system. Perhaps most important, Yu has made changes to the translation itself in order to make it as precise as possible.
One of the great works of Chinese literature, The Journey to the West is not only invaluable to scholars of Eastern religion and literature, but, in Yu’s elegant rendering, also a delight for any reader.
instant, he was heading straight for the peaches on the south mountain, and we shall speak no more of him for the moment. Now, the proverb says: 17 : : t w e n t y - s e v e n A tall mountain will always have monsters; A rugged peak will always produce ﬁends. In this mountain there was indeed a monster-spirit, who was disturbed by the Great Sage Sun’s departure. Treading dark wind, she came through the clouds and found the elder sitting on the ground. “What luck! What luck!” she said, unable
they will leave my domain. If some demons or ﬁends of another region pick them up, people would laugh till their mouths crack up, and I would eat my heart out! I’ll go down and make fun of them one more time.” Dear Monster! Lowering the dark wind again into the fold of the mountain, she shook her body and changed herself into an old man. Truly he had Flowing white hair like Pengzu’s,⁴ And beard more frosty than the Age Star’s. A jade stone⁵ rang in his ears, And gold stars ﬂashed in his eyes.
for thirty rounds but no decision was reached. Secretly delighted, Pilgrim said to himself, “This lawless monster does manage to withstand the iron rod of old Monkey. But I have already acquired three of his treasures. If I continue to ﬁght bitterly like this with him, won’t it just delay what I want to do? Perhaps I should use the gourd or the pure vase to store him up.” He then thought further, “No good! No good! The proverb says, ‘Each thing has its master.’ If I call him and he doesn’t
Five Phases, confused, lost their peace. They showed their awe-inspiring, magic power; They kicked up dust and stones to ﬂaunt their might. They fought till the sun was about to sink: The demon grew weak and retreated ﬁrst. The demon fought with the Great Sage for more than thirty rounds; when the sky darkened, the demon ﬂed in defeat and headed for the southwest in the direction of the Crush-Dragon Cave. We shall speak no more of him for the moment. Lowering the direction of his cloud, the Great
earlier?” asked the Bodhisattva. “Why did you go looking instead on the islands?” When Pilgrim heard these words, he was secretly pleased and said to himself, “What luck! What luck! The Bodhisattva must have a cure!” He went forward again to beg some more, and the Bodhisattva said, “The sweet dew in my immaculate vase can heal divine trees or spirit roots.” “Have you tried this before?” asked Pilgrim. “Indeed,” said the Bodhisattva. “When?” asked Pilgrim. The Bodhisattva said, “Some years ago