Natural Rules and Orderliness
Literally, this term means the rules and orderliness of heaven and earth. According to Zuo’s Commentary on The Spring and Autumn Annals, Zichan proposed the concept to explain the essence and justification of rites. Zichan believed that the movements of heaven and earth followed eternal rules that created a consistent and rational order. Man too should imitate this in word and deed in an orderly, rational, and proper way. The constraints that rites place on human behavior, and the resulting social ethics and harmony are all manifestations of these laws of nature. The expression later came to mean anything that is proper, or any reasoning that is justified.
Rites represent the rules governing the movement of heaven and earth as well as the code of conduct for the people. (Zuo’s Commentary on The Spring and Autumn Annals)