1 In religious terms, the so-called heavenly mandate means the public’s will, and it has the same meaning in the Book [one of the Chinese classics]: “God’s view is actually the people’s view. God’s opinion is actually the people’s opinion.” In modern language, it means meeting the needs of the times and meeting the requirements of public opinion.
2 Those who can meet the needs of the people can win the hearts of the people. Those who are loved by the people are virtuous persons. They can receive heavenly mandate, get elected to an office, and live a long life. Therefore, heaven’s heart is the people’s heart and heaven’s opinion is the people’s opinion. In other words, “heaven allows things that people desire to take place.”
A Letter to Mr. Deng Xiaoping, January 15, 1991