the translations

The translations compared

Amongst Bô Yin Râ’s spiritual paintings, though not belonging to the Hortus Conclusus, we find the “Temple of Eternity”. – –

The Temple of Eternity reflects the structure and the laws and the hierarchy of eternal life. In all his works Bô Yin Râ points man towards this life, teaches him how to achieve this and what his position can be therein.
This Temple, its construction, its working and its illumination, is outlined in the book "More Light" in the chapters "The architects of the cathedral of humanity." (pdf pages 52-89 of The Standard-translation©) and "The secret of the ancient cathedral building works." (pdf pages 224-241 of The Standard-translation©). (Unfortunately this significant book is unavailable in the Authorized / Endorsed translation.)
Man has endeavoured to shape the spiritual in the earthly, thus "The Gothic cathedral is the most perfect image of this hierarchical cosmic order." (More Light, pdf page 70 of The Standard-translation©.)
As the translator makes the words of Bô Yin Râ accessible in a different realm just like the cathedral makes spiritual life accessible on earth, the translator works, so to speak, on behalf of Bô Yin Râ and the image he creates of the Original German Books should be as perfect as the image of the spirit represented by the Gothic cathedral.


compares with this painting one might say as these pictures of the magnificient 18th century Benedictine monastery of Melk in Austria compare with it. One feels elated and taken on, but this is due to the frills of elegance and not to the intrinsic design or substance of the structure.
In order to even enhance the frills liberties are taken with the translation: The authorized / endorsed translation mixes the genetive and dative at liberty, but “The Book ON the Royal Art” is definitely different from “The Book OF the Royal Art” to give but one example.
Interpretation instead of following Bô Yin Râ who was certainly able to choose the wording of his teaching, we find for instance in “The Book on HUMAN NATURE” instead of “The Book on Man” (in German: Das Buch vom Menschen”).
To be noticed are also insertions like “To all who strive toward TIMELESS light”.
Remarkable are, as example, the following additions as well as omissions:

Original German



All these frills guide the reader merely along the lines of the comprehension of the translator instead of providing a clear and clean translation of Bô Yin Râ for the reader to base himself on.

It goes without saying that it is of no importance to add countless additional examples since the purpose of this website is to make the unprepared reader aware of the importance of his choice. The authorized / endorsed translation is definitely enchanting, but alas, misleading the mind not yet familiar with Bô Yin Râ’s teachings to a certain extent.

To the cosy well being of the reader, plainly envisaged by the authorized / endorsed translation, are added dedications of the books. For instance: “To the memory of my mother Edith Reichenbach 1908-1993” or “For Eric Strauss, Publisher and editor etc.”. Very clearly such dedications are possible within the context of a preface by the translator, but never in the way that Bô Yin Râ seems to dedicate his books to these persons.
Instead of the dedication to Edith Reichenbach the Original German book on the exalted subject of the Mystery of Golgotha is dedicated in the unfathomably deep words “To the mother of my children!” (in German: Der Mutter meiner Kinder!”).

Another dedication, to the German Bô Yin Râ Foundation, Deutsche Bô Yin Râ Stiftung, gives rise to some doubts about the linguistic astuteness of the translator. Which could possibly account for taking recourse to the paraphrasing category of translation.

The designation “authorized / endorsed translation”, applicable to 16 volumes of the Hortus Conclusus only, should probably be appreciated in the sense that the Swiss Foundation has consented to this translation: until 12-31-2013 all rights, especially the rights of translation, belonged to this foundation as the trustee of the Bô Yin Râ estate.



then compares with the painting “The Temple of Eternity” as the pictures of the magnificent early medieval cathedral of Durham in England compare with it.
The austerity, the clear outlines and the depth are almost puritanic in character, ironically much in the sense of the great Benedict, founder of the Benedictine order in the 5th century.

The standard translation encompasses the entire Hortus Conclusus, all 32 books and booklets. All the books in verse are available. The verses are of great beauty and are highly autobiographic, enlightening us on the spiritual ancestry of Bô Yin Râ.

The standard translation offers the German original text alongside the English translation so that the translation can be compared with and checked against the German original at any moment. In this way the standard translation makes itself constantly accountable for its correctness as well as for its inevitable flaws.(PDF version)

The translation technique has been effectuated by a professional translator, recommended by the German cultural council, the Goethe Institut, in London. This translator is a PhD in the German language and teaches in a private school south of London.
Every word of the original has been accounted for in the translation: translating is a professional skill, subject to stringent rules and with its own methodology.

To the person responsible for the translation, who is answerable for the correctness of the sense and of the meaning of the texts is applicable what now follows, taken from the book The Secret, pdf pages 198-200.


This carries the authorization of the standard translation within itself.