天人合一: Tian ren heyi.
The standard translation of this ancient saying is "Harmony between man and heaven," however a lot of people, including our institute leader Roger Ames, have major problems translating the first character, 天, as "heaven." Roger describes this as a tragic mistake first made by early Jesuit missionaries to China who were imposing Christian ideas on Confucian philosophy. Nevertheless, there a pretty straightforward reason for using translating 天 as "heaven": 天 both means "sky" and refers to an important cosmological principle in Chinese thought. Roger thinks this surface similarity is seriously misleading, because 天 is not at all transcendent. 天 did not create the world, it is coconstituted with it.
The imminent nature of 天 has actually lead some people to use "nature" as a translation. According to Robert Weller, early Chinese translations of Darwin actually referred to "天 selection" for natural selection. This would make 天人合一a strong environmentalist slogan: "harmony between man and nature." Roger resists this in his translation of the 中庸on the grounds that 天 is not separate from human action. Of course, viewing humans as a part of nature is a perfectly good environmental and Darwinist stance. In any case, according to Weller, ziran (自然)has been the standard translation for "nature" since the 1920s. "Mother nature" is translated "da ziran" (大自然), "great nature."