The subject of Dr. Lippiello's study is one of bewildering complexity and variety. 'Good luck' and its manifestation through ominous signs and miraculous events occupy a central position in traditional Chinese thought, and the author has wisely refrained from covering the subject in all its ramifications. She has chosen to place the belief in auspicious omens in three different perspectives, corresponding to the three main religious and ideological traditions of ancient and early medieval China: Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism. (...)By concentrating on these three main spheres of religious thought, each with its own conception of ominous signs, Dr. Lippiello gives us a clear presentation of a subject that in spite of its obvious importance so far has not attracted much scholary attention. It is the result of years of exciting exploration to which I have been a witness when supervising her research. To me it is a great pleasure to see the book published in a form that does justice to its content, and to introduce it to the reader.
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