Monday, March 29, 2010

Lunar Sphere!C18896CED789AD22!2351.entry

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Litigating Brothers Awakened by a Mirror in the Courtroom

The Governor Who Judged a Case with the Help of a Mirror
---Litigating Brothers Awakened by a Mirror in the Courtroom

Original Chinese Text in 42 Chinese Words: 马恭敏公,作守。有兄弟老二争缠不休, 公命取一大镜,令兄弟同照之。见面庞相似,须发皓然,泣悟交让而出。(42个汉字)

In feudal China, a Governor is called Taishou (太守),who is also inherently the Chief Justice of the region he administrated.

Governor Gongmin MA once presided over a case of property dispute between two elderly brothers over inheritance. Before he allowed the parties to render an outline of argument or substantive evidence, Governor MA asked the bailiff to bring a big mirror to the bar table and ordered the litigating brothers to look into it side by side.

Quite astonished by such unusual process, the brothers obeyed nevertheless. IN seconds, they came to realize the similar facial outlines and white hair and beard on their heads. They suddenly cried sorrowfully and conceded, requested to withdraw the dispute and go home. His Honour so ordered.

The moral of the story: The mirror has helped them to realize they are siblings, and they have shared so much in the upbringing, such dispute over inheritance is not what their deceased parents would want to see, it is ruining their fraternal bond.

兄弟争讼,借镜省悟 Litigating Brothers Awakened by a Mirror in the Courtroom

马恭敏公当太守时,遇到两位年老的兄弟为争财产而不甘罢休, 诉讼到衙门。

  马恭敏公命令属下拿出一面大镜子,叫争讼的兄弟一同照镜子,他俩兄弟看见彼此面貌相似,胡须和头发都已经白了,心中有所省悟,哭泣而且交相让步地走出 衙门。(《德育古监》第102页)


Saturday, March 13, 2010

改变历史的又一条大被子 ---唐玄宗同胞膑足而眠的故事

(《中国帝王教化智慧选讲》作者: 林四立 版权所有,2010, 澳大利亚/中国)


后世人只记得杨贵妃与他的爱情故事, 却对他的政治智慧缺乏了解:

唐朝郑处诲所著《明皇杂录》记载:玄宗友爱甚笃,尝于殿中,置一大帐与五兄弟同寝。初即位的时候,唐玄宗特地做了长枕头、大被子,与兄弟宋王、申王、岐王、薛王、豳王同寝。 玄宗在宫殿中还设立五 幄,与诸王更常在里面出入,称为“五王帐”。


712年(延和元年)八月,睿宗传位太子,退为太上皇。李隆基即 位,改元先天,是为玄宗。不久太平公主又欲发动宫廷政变以废玄宗,李隆基乃与郭元振、王毛仲、高力士等人于先天二年(713)先发制人,赐太平公主死,尽 诛其余党,改元“开元”。

开元盛世:玄宗开元年间,社会安定,政治清明,经济空前繁荣,唐朝进入鼎盛时期。安史之乱:玄宗执政后期,贪 图享乐,宠信并重用李林甫等奸臣,导致安史之乱发生,唐朝开始衰落。

玄宗公元712年至756年在位,在位44年。前后有三个国号, 即先天,开元,和天宝。



The Big Quilt of Emperor Xuanzong, Tang Dynasty, 712 AD China

(The Wisdom of Cultivation in Ancient China edited by Stephen Sili Lin, Copyright 2010 Australia

In my last article I talked the big quilt made by a wise mother from my hometown in 220 or so. Senior Minister Meng Zong’s mother sewn a big one for him to share with his poverty-stricken classmates who later turned his good friends and supporters. About 500 years later, there is another big quilt that left significant marks in history.

ON 21st July, 710 AD, Prince Longji, of Tang Dynasty of ancient China, has dethroned his predecessor through a military coup in which he and his followers killed Queen Wei and Princess Anle. He has honoured this father the ousted Ruizong Emperor and offered him the reign. Prince Longji was nominated Crown Prince. In August 712 AD, Emperor Ruizong retired and passed on the reign to Prince Longji, who was better-known as Xuanzong of Tang Dynasty.

He has awarded his 5 brothers official titles as King of Song, King of Shen, King of Qi, King of Xue, and King of You.

IN his early days as Emperor, he has ordered a big pillow and big quilt so that the 6 of them can sleep in. IN his royal palace, he has also set up 5 tents for them so that they can stay together overnight. In 713, his partner in Coupe Prince Taiping tried to dethrone him; he struck out and pre-empted the conspiracy and awarded her death by suicide. Subsequently he enjoyed 44 years of the reign of China.

Historians commented that such sharing of big quilt and pillow played an important role in his reign: this conduct has consolidated his power, and gained the image as fair and open and ready to share privileges and power with brothers, who in return, became his die hard supporters in the consequential political struggles.

IN Australian recent history, party leaders from both persuasions have shared houses; wonder if their power-sharing arrangement can be consolidated when they start sharing pillows and quilts.

Australia would certainly be a better place if Wayne, Rudd, Abbot and Hockey can share the same bed and same blanket, history would really repeat itself… Australians can embrace another economic boom and long phase of prosperity.

In hindsight, Michael Jackson’s peculiar hobbies of inviting children to share his big bed and huge blankets should be perceived as innocent as fraternal bonding, a form of pure love between brothers.

Monday, March 1, 2010

《江夏伟大母亲的智慧》 The Wise Mother Who Has Sewn a Huge Quilt

The Wise Mother Who Has Sewn a Huge Quilt
A wise mum has sewn a huge quilt for her son, who is studying with a bunch of poor kids.
"Why have you sewn such an extra large quilt?" asked her neighbor.
"I surmise some of my son's classmates might be too poor to afford sufficient bedding, so he can share it and make lifetime friends with those diligent, virtuous and ambitious classmates.
She was from my hometown, Jiangxia, in Wu Kingdom of Central and Eastern China, 220 AD circa.

Her son is Meng Zong, who became a Senior Minister/Advisor for the King of WU.

作者:林四立 (澳大利亚 布里斯班);



父亲英年早逝,与母亲相依为命。母亲则是极有智慧的女性。 时时教导他刻苦学习,廉政爱民,为他日后的成就打好道德的基础。江夏这个伟大母亲的睿智在以下几个故事中可窥一斑:



有一年冬天,天气十分寒冷。她特地缝制了一床又厚又大的被褥给儿子送去。人们看到这么大的一床被子,都十分奇 怪。孟宗的母亲却深情地说:“我儿子的学友大多很贫寒,拿不出什么好东西来结交朋友,这床大被子正好为他们一起盖用,共同御寒,增进他们学友之间的感 情。” 大概纨绔子弟不会与这般“同条被窝”的贫寒学子多攀交情吧。一帮勤奋好学的上进少年,就这样在冬天,相互勉励,磨砺意志,寻求济世救民的良方。


负笈海外15年的我,曾也是在江夏的寒冬中发抖。最近回国讲学。周末,下午5点左右,偶尔经过母校原一中的旧址时,看到校门前后几十米,到处是送餐的家长们,与孩子蹲在街角或台阶上,急急的吃着饭。长辈的那种殷切,那份关爱, 确实叫人为之动容。只有为他们祈祷:愿学子成才,原父母健康,也愿为他们提供一个避风的小亭或走廊。澳洲的孩子是幸福的,下午3点就放学了。5点钟,在吃点心,看动画或者运动。叫他们蹲在寒冷的街角充饥,没门。稍有能耐的父母还会鼓噪一个投诉,教育厅只怕要责令学校为保护青少年健康,开放一个空调接待厅,让他们于探访的家人吃顿安心饭。

言归正传,孟宗受母亲言传身教的启迪,尊师重道,品学兼优。南阳名师李肃认为他有日后可成大器,前程无量,悉心特别指导, 德学精进。




端茶倒水侍奉外, 还总是想方设法满足母亲的愿望和要求。有 一次,母亲病后需要调养,很想吃笋子食疗。当时寒冬腊月,哪来会有竹笋呢?孟宗无计可施,到竹林中双手抱竹,大声嚎啕,并祈祷。结果孝心感动上天,孟宗的脚旁有几支鲜嫩的竹笋破土而出。孟宗喜出望外,赶忙 把竹笋带回家。母亲吃了新笋,病真的好了。

3。 举孝廉而入仕途

孟宗孝母哭竹生笋,极尽孝子之道的典型事迹在吴国广为传颂,教育了人民,感动了吴王孙权,在当地州郡官员的一致举荐下,孙权不仅亲自召见了孝子孟宗,还赐 其物品多件以表彰其母、派他在骠骑大将军朱据名下当了一名军吏。鼓励他勤奋工作,尽职尽责。

4。 人微位卑 母亲慰勉

夜雨屋漏,孟宗深感能力卑微,对不起母亲,就跪在母亲床前哭泣说:“您的恩情难以 报答。”母亲说:“你应该不断的勉励自己,积极要求进步,何必要哭呢?”孟宗心明大义,从此他不断勉励自己清廉从政,忠君 报国。

5。 母退咸鱼, 孟宗沉坛

孟宗后来升任望江盐池司马,主管渔业盐业的特许经营。为了孝敬母亲,他亲自结网捕鱼,腌制后托人捎回家中孝敬母亲。他母亲见了腌鱼, 让人把腌鱼带了回 去,并捎回信责备儿子说:“你是主管渔盐的司马,却捕了鱼腌制后送回家给我吃,你难道不知道避避嫌疑吗?鱼也是国家的物资啊。绝不要在作错事了。你为官得民心,体民情,我心就欣慰了。”孟宗接到母亲退回的鱼,读了母亲的教诲,深感愧 疚,把鱼坛沉入池中,决心以此为戒。“母亲已给我示范,哪敢不自勉励呢?”

6。 孟宗奉母


7。弃官奔丧 负荆请罪


守孝期满,孟宗负荆请罪,大臣陆逊向吴王孙权陈情,特免孟宗一死。 孙权之母亲知道后,泪流满面地说:吴国兴旺还需象孟宗这样的忠臣,为人不孝敬父母,又怎么可能忠君为国呢?

孙权念他天下之大孝子,加之治国方略过人,且转战南北,行政清廉,屡建功勋,才免他一死,后又昭其复出为 官。

8。官至司空 鞠躬尽瘁




注:1. 作者:林四立,字立荣,为殷朝忠臣,比林姓太始祖比干第155代孙。江夏一中,华中师大校友,澳洲法律援助及残疾人辩护律师, 澳洲民族电台华人节目制作人及时事评论员。欢迎任何批评意见,请发至;

2. 孟宗:《三国志》四八《吴嗣主传》第1207页中有孟宗其人其事之记载。