Chao Hsiu Chen Gallery
Chao-Hsiu Chen

The Master

  The novel is now available as eBook with the original text and illustrations by Chao-Hsiu Chen
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Song of Hope

  Three women in three generations struggle with love and pain through times of great political upheaval in China.
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One hundred years of Chinese history

My family once owned a very beautiful, richly decorated baldachin bed. Since time immemorial a baldachin bed like this has been more than just a place for sleeping. For children, say, it is their nursery and playpen. And it is also a nice place for the Chinese tea ceremony. Every time I see this bed, I remember what my grandmother told me, “each old thing has been through far more than we have and has seen things we can barely even imagine. This bed has seen the last hundred years of Chinese history, violent and dramatic changes – from the end of the monarchy, to the two different political systems, from Pu Yi to Sun Yat-Sen, Mao Zedong and Chiang Kai-shek, from unity to separation. But whatever changes human striving may bring about, they always begin with the hope of a better life. It is this hope that my grandmother gave my mother, and my mother gave me in the gift of a very beautiful, richly decorated baldachin bed…This baldachin bed has seen the story of the three protagonists in "Song of Hope".

Difficult times call for special strength

I was born in Taiwan and raised in a time when the continued skirmishes between Chiang Kai Shek and Mao Tse Tung were at their peak. In spite of this troubled time, people in my country have given the best education and transmit hope and happiness to their children.
In my hometown I was lucky enough to study the Buddhist, Confucian and Taoist teachings with the best Masters over many years. I thank them from the bottom of my heart for passing on the secrets of Chinese philosophy and the theory of Feng Shui.
Later I went on to study music in Vienna and Salzburg. I will always remember my professor, Carl Orff, who was the first to introduce me the European culture.

Clear and graceful character brings luck in life

After publishing ‘The Buddhist Book of Love’ in 1997, I received a letter from a German couple living in Hong Kong. They wrote to tell me that their first child, a baby girl, had recently come to the world and that they had named her after me. The translation of “Chao” means “clear” and “Hsiu” means graceful and elegant. I wish that little girl every happiness, and I’m certain that the good name will bring her luck in life.
I currently live in Rome, the entrance of my house faces the ancient stones of Via Appia Antica, here I write, paint and compose. Over the last years I have developed and expanded my writing to both, fiction and nonfiction as well as inspirational writing. To date I have published forty books, which have been translated into twenty languages. My first novel, the historical family saga ‘Song of Hope’ was published in Germany in 2005 to much acclaim.
Recently my work on Tao Te Ching caught the imagination of an English painter who has expressed his interpretation of the philosophy through his art. It gives me great pleasure to see how my work can serve as a bridge between eastern and western culture.
Today China plays an important role in the modern world, but the Chinese people will never forget who they are and where they came from. I thank my Chinese ancestors for the wisdom and philosophy they passed down to me, and hope that I too can spread their teachings so that others may live a healthy and happy life.

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Chao-Hsiu Chen

Chinese Wisdom and Philosophy

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Chao Hsiu Chen Via Appia Antica 00049 Roma