The object of the writer of this book is to exhibit his view of the primitive and fundamental element of Chinese religion and ethics. That view is based on independent research into the ancient literature of China and into the actual state of her religion.
The evident necessity to study that primitive element from ancient Chinese books has compelled the author to quote a great number of passages from those books. Without using the building materials, he could not build. He has translated the passages independently from former translators, but with conscientious consultation of the opinions of native commentators. The source of every quotation is faithfully mentioned. Short notes about the sources can be found in the book by means of the Index, so that there is no need of describing or summarising them here.