易窮則変 変則通 通則久

English translation: Yi said: 'When something's at its end, it changes. When it changes, it works. And

01:44 Sep 29, 2015
Chinese to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Philosophy
Chinese term or phrase: 易窮則変 変則通 通則久
A phrase from I Ching (易经). I can kind of get the idea of the meaning but is there any established translation of this phrase?
Mikiko
Local time: 03:00
English translation:Yi said: 'When something's at its end, it changes. When it changes, it works. And
Explanation:
《易》:“窮則変,変則通,通則久。”
Yi said: 'When something's at its end, it changes. When it changes, it becomes unobstructed, and thus it endures.
I was majored in ancient Chinese literature, and Yi was one of the clasic pieces we must study. The words in it are simple while the meaning is infinite. There are different versions of Yi, because in ancient China there were no punctuations in books, people punctuated them when they read them in different ways. Here I use a most accepted version. May it helps.

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Note added at 2天12小时 (2015-10-01 14:43:03 GMT)
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By the way, Yi is another name of I Ching. You can replace it by I Ching in this sentence.
Selected response from:

倩茜 吴
China
Local time: 02:00
Grading comment
Thank you everyone. It's difficult to select the best answer. Kinna's explanation was most helpful.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
4Yi said: 'When something's at its end, it changes. When it changes, it works. And
倩茜 吴
4When the Changes reach their limit, they transform. When they transform, they become cycles...
Robert Hopkins
4When gradual progress can no longer rein in the needs at the end of an era, drastic changes are...
Melodyxz
4The change takes place in the deadlocked situations....
jarv95888
3When desperate, one must adapt. By adapting, one will find a way out, which leads to sustainability
Sj Han


Discussion entries: 1





  

Answers


3 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
The change takes place in the deadlocked situations....


Explanation:
The change takes place in the deadlocked situations.
The change creates the new standards.
Then this standards lead for a long time.
(Got it from: http://taigongwang.net/fs/2009/08/1955.php?lang=jp)
An alternative version:
A dead-locked situation invites change, change opens up accessibility, and accessibility promises sustainability.

jarv95888
Local time: 14:00
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in ChineseChinese, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 10
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10 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
When desperate, one must adapt. By adapting, one will find a way out, which leads to sustainability


Explanation:
A suggested translation for your consideration.

Sj Han
Australia
Native speaker of: Native in ChineseChinese, Native in EnglishEnglish
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15 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
When gradual progress can no longer rein in the needs at the end of an era, drastic changes are...


Explanation:
The sentence in Chinese means:
【釋義】事物發展到了極點,就要發生變化,發生變化,才會使事物的發展不受阻塞,事物才能不斷的發展。 說明在面臨不能發展的局面時,必須改變現狀,進行變革和革命。
My own rendition would be:
When gradual progress can no longer rein in the needs at the end of an era, drastic changes are inevitable. Such changes open up uncharted territory and bring about new opportunities. In turn they open up a new chapter of unimpeded and long-lasting development.

Below is an oft-quoted translation online for your reference:
"Any circumstance hitting a limit will begin to change. Change will in turn lead to an unimpeded state, and then lead to continuity."




    Reference: http://zhidao.baidu.com/question/19461288.html
Melodyxz
United States
Local time: 14:00
Native speaker of: Chinese
PRO pts in category: 4
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18 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
易穷则变 变则通 通则久
When the Changes reach their limit, they transform. When they transform, they become cycles...


Explanation:
When the Changes reach their limit, they transform. When they transform, they become cycles. As cycles they endure.

(Translated by Douglass A. White, Ph.D, The Complete Book of Changes: Translation with A Commentary on the Evolution of Consciousness, 2009, p.12)

As you likely know, this quote does not come from the actual divination text of the Book of Changes, but rather from the commentary on the Book of Changes. There is no single authoritative translation in circulation. The translation provided above is a relatively recent one by Douglass White that adheres very closely to the original.

Given the context of the quote, if a wooden translation like this will only confuse the reader, I would perhaps opt for a more elaborate translation like some of those suggested above, or at least add it in parentheses.


    Reference: http://dpedtech.com/IJApp2.pdf
Robert Hopkins
United States
Local time: 13:00
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  tanglsus
1 day 7 hrs

disagree  jarv95888: "通" is not cyclical. On the contrary, it might be a symptom of "穷."
2 days 20 hrs
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2 days 12 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
Yi said: 'When something's at its end, it changes. When it changes, it works. And


Explanation:
《易》:“窮則変,変則通,通則久。”
Yi said: 'When something's at its end, it changes. When it changes, it becomes unobstructed, and thus it endures.
I was majored in ancient Chinese literature, and Yi was one of the clasic pieces we must study. The words in it are simple while the meaning is infinite. There are different versions of Yi, because in ancient China there were no punctuations in books, people punctuated them when they read them in different ways. Here I use a most accepted version. May it helps.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2天12小时 (2015-10-01 14:43:03 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

By the way, Yi is another name of I Ching. You can replace it by I Ching in this sentence.


    Reference: http://baike.baidu.com/link?url=ra6LKTpUu7udyXXbtYcR7RFNCeom...
倩茜 吴
China
Local time: 02:00
Native speaker of: Chinese
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
Thank you everyone. It's difficult to select the best answer. Kinna's explanation was most helpful.
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)



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