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Emperor Wu of Liang Boasts of His Own Merit and Virtue

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post on 2016-5-26 18:10:40 | show all floors |reading mode
Emperor Wu of Liang
Boasts of His Own Merit and Virtue

梁王武帝 炫示功德

When Patriarch Bodhidharma first arrived in Nanjing from Guangzhou, he went to convert Emperor Wu. Emperor Wu asked him, "In my whole life, I have built many temples, helped many people to leave the home-life, provided the needy with money from the national treasury, and also made vegetarian meal offerings to the Sangha. What merit and virtue have I created?" At that time, whoever left the home-life would be treated well by the Emperor, with everything including food, dwelling, and clothing provided for.As long as you were a left home person, the emperor would make offerings to you, pay reverence to you, and bow to you.

达摩祖师最初从广州到南京,便去度化梁武帝。梁武帝就问:“我这一辈子造了很多庙,度了很多和尚出家;又拿国家的钱,布施给所有的穷人,也供僧,打斋供众。我这样有什么功德?”那时谁若出家,皇帝特别欢迎,什么都供养你,吃的他也供着,住的他也供着;只要你出家,皇帝就供养你,恭敬你,向你叩头。

Emperor Wu was the kind of person who wanted to be number one in everything. That was why when he met Patriarch Bodhidharma, he didn't seek Dharma from him. Instead he was totally engrossed in how to win praise from the Patriarch. He wanted to inflate his ego.

梁武帝这个人,什么都要第一的,所以一见达摩祖师,也不求法,尽想要达摩祖师来赞叹他一下,来给他戴几顶高帽子。

Concerned that the Patriarch might not know of the good deeds that he had done, such as building temples, converting monks, practicing giving, and making vegetarian meal offerings, he went ahead and pointed them out as he introduced himself to the Patriarch.

He said, "You see, I have built hundreds of temples. This one and that one all house many monks whom I helped to leave the home-life. The amount of giving I have done is not small and the number of monks I have provided for is not small. How much merit and virtue would you say I've amassed?" Basically, he was providing his own promotion campaign. He was saying, "Look at me! I am different from other emperors. I specialize in doing good deeds, creating merit and virtue. How much merit and virtue would you say I have?" He did not want to seek the Dharma for ending birth and death; instead, he wanted to boast of his own merit and virtue first.

他怕达摩祖师不知道他造寺、度僧、布施、设斋的功德,不知道他这些好处,于是就自我介绍:“你看我,造了几百处庙,又有这个庙,又有那个庙,所有的庙里都住了很多和尚,这些和尚都是我一手成就他们出家的。我又做了多少布施,供养多少僧,你说我这功德怎么样啊?”这个意思就是自我介绍,自己说:“噢!你看我,我这个皇帝和其他皇帝是不一样的;我这个皇帝是专门做好事的,做功德的。你说我有什么功德呢?”他这不是想要求法了生死,是先要炫示炫示自己的功德。

 author| post on 2016-5-26 18:20:59 | show all floors
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