Moon Represents My Heart by Teresa Teng – Lyrics and Meaning

Yue Liang Dai Biao Wo De Xin (月亮代表我的心)

The Full Song Commentary

There’s this song that I love called (translated): The Moon Represents My Heart or Yue Liang Dai Biao Wo De Xin (Hanyu pinyin). It was sung and popularised by the late Teresa Teng.

The Moon in the Chinese Context

Taken out of context, the moon is a moon, and is generally not considered anything special. However, in the Chinese culture the moon is much more than just “a moon”. The moon in the Chinese culture is something like the sun in the Western culture. Not the same in the literal sense, but rather, in terms of its importance and value, it’s really pretty close — e.g. Western culture uses the Sun to tell time, while the Chinese use the moon (without which there will be no Lunar New Year). And time, arguably, is of great importance to man.

Moon Represents My Heart?

But putting these cultural differences aside, was there any significance as to why the moon was used in this way to represent the heart? I’ve been looking for resources on this over the internet, but commentary on this song in English (I don’t know about Chinese) has been non-existent. That’s why I have decided to give some commentary of my own.

The Moon as a Metaphor

The very reason why I took an interest in finding out the meaning of this song was because firstly, the language used is simple — mostly words we use in everyday conversations — and therefore the lyrics are accessible for just about anyone versed in even a little bit of the Chinese language.

Secondly, I was thinking about the fleeting feelings I had for the subjects of my romantic fancy. I’ve been infatuated with girls before, only for the infatuation to steal away for a while, and return with a vengeance. At that time I thought that I was perhaps just being childish and fickle for not holding on to that feeling (of love) forever.

Then one day while thinking about the fickleness of love, this song came to mind: “the moon represents my heart.” Wait a minute… the moon?? “that’s a weird representation of a muscle,” I thought to myself.

I went out to take a look at the moon, hmm… it was a moonless night! Sheesh, some love song. On a moonless night it would be a stupid song for a lover. Then it struck me. On a moonless night, one cannot see the moon, and yet one knows the moon is there — somewhere out there, but out there somewhere. Gosh, there was more to this metaphor than meets the eye.

Night-time’s a Romantic Time

Suddenly it dawned on me why the moon was a great metaphor for love. Firstly, the moon brings to mind night, and all the associations that come with it. Some of these associations include romantic feelings from candle-light meals, feelings when one settles onto the same bed as one’s partner, or when one goes out together with a loved one for slow walks by the sea. With its connotations of night, the moon is inherently romantic.

Then comes the moon as an indicator of love. The feeling of love does not last unwaveringly day in, day out. It comes and goes, and it’s when it goes that determines who the successful couples are. The moon changes all the time, from the full-moon, to the half-moon, to the crescent moon, followed by several moonless nights — then magically, the crescent moon comes back into being, and grows to the half-moon, and finally becomes full again!

The Love Cycle

Like magic, love appears is replenished through time. And like magic, the moon appears to change through time. Bit does the moon really change over time? It’s always the same moon, it’s only how it is viewed that makes it seem different. From certain angles, the moon reflects light in a certain way, from other angles, it reflects light in other ways.

And yet love, though seemingly different, never changes. Underneath the veil of a half-moon, or crescent moon or moonlessness, there is a full moon just waiting to appear. Add to all this the significance of the moon in Chinese culture, and you get a great song.

The Moon Festival

According to a reader of mine, Angela, this song is sung on the moon festival…or autumn festival….and on that night the moon is the fullest in teh whole year [sic]. The festival mentioned here is the mid-autumn festival, or as many Chinese fondly call it, the moon-cake festival (for we all love them! and it is only during this time that they are wildly sold).

If this is so, it would provide another (and possibly originally intended) explanation. Interpret it as you will: for the purposes of practicality, you might want to use the meaning I put forth on this page. But if you do somehow manage to recall this song during the festival, then you can use that meaning instead!

To conclude, the moon metaphor is how I would represent my own feelings for someone. It isn’t that I love or don’t love you, because I do; it’s only that at some times my love is more obvious than at others.

Notes

If you are looking for Teresa Teng’s CDs or DVDs, you can try looking for them on Amazon.com. Just be careful when you purchase them, as many of them are for her Japanese songs (she was fluent in Japanese and Chinese).

If you’re still not satisfied with what you’re looking for, I might be able to source your her CDs in Singapore. Just drop me an e-mail at teresa.teng (at) edonn.com and we might be able to work something out. Happy shopping!

English and Hanyu Pinyin Lyrics

English Translation

You ask me how deep my love for you is,
How much I really love you…
My affection is real.
My love is real.
The moon represents my heart.

You ask me how deep my love for you is,
How much I really love you…
My affection does not waver,
My love will not change.
The moon represents my heart.

* Just one soft kiss
is enough to move my heart.
A period of time when our affection was deep,
Has made me miss you until now.

* You ask me how deep my love for you is,
How much I really love you.

* ** Go think about it.
Go and have a look [at the moon],
The moon represents my heart.

Repeat *

Repeat **

Hanyu Pinyin

ni wen wo ai ni you duo shen
wo ai ni you ji fen
wo de qing ye zhen
wo de ai ye zhen
yue liang dai biao wo de xin

ni wen wo ai ni you duo shen
wo ai ni you ji fen
wo de qing bu yi
wo de ai bu bian
yue liang dai biao wo de xin

* qing qing de yi ge wen
yi jin da dong wo de xin
shen shen de yi duan qing
jiao wo si nian dao ru jin

* ni wen wo ai ni you duo shen
wo ai ni you ji fen

* ** ni qu xiang yi xiang
ni qu kan yi kan
yue liang dai biao wo de xin

Repeat *

Repeat **

Simplified Chinese

Due to the lack of support in many browsers for Chinese characters (including mine!), I have put up the lyrics in Simplified Chinese in an image file:

The moon represents my heart simplified Chinese
The moon represents my heart simplified Chinese

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