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放生故事之一: 放生池

放生池 浙江天台山的山峰是青黛色的,犹如竖起的画屏。远客纷沓而至,观其美景。 The peaks of Tiantai Mountain in Zhejiang are green and black. They stand like an ornamental screen. People come from far away to enjoy the scenery here. 几千年来,这些秀丽的山峰上都建有许多的寺庙。有一个大庙的主持名叫智顗,约生活在公元539-597年间。因为他的智慧,隋炀帝赐封他为智者大师,这个名字至今仍为人们所知。 For thousands of years, there have been many temples in these beautiful mountains. The head of a big temple there was called Zhiyi. He lived from about 539 to 597 AD. Because he was so wise, the Emperor Yang of the Sui dynasty gave him the title The Wise Master, and this is how he is known even today. 当时,智者大师觉得时下之人过于残忍,尤其是满足口腹之欲时。他们可以杀掉任何活物,然后吃掉。 At the time, The Wise Master felt that people were too cruel, especially when they wanted something to eat. They would kill almost anything that moved and eat it. 他觉得必须做点什么。但怎么做呢?僧侣们又没有钱。所以智者大师开始化缘,几年后,他终于攒了足够的钱。他拿这笔钱买了一块地,并雇了一些人来帮他建一个池子。 He decided something had to be done. But how? Monks don't have any money. So The Wise Master became a beggar for several years until he finally got enough money to get some land and hire some workers to build him a pond. 人们看到后,纷纷嘲笑智者大师其实是个傻瓜! When people saw that, they laughed and said The Wise Master is pretty dumb! 大师是智者,所以他一点也不在乎别人的嘲笑,继续建造他的池塘。 Because he was so wise, The Wise Master didn't care how much they laughed at him. He kept up work on his pond. 工人们休息时,大师就向他们宣讲佛教。他说:“佛经上说‘一切众生皆有佛性。’你也许会对一条鱼或者一只螃蟹不以为然,但是它们也能成佛。” When the workers had spare time, he told them about Buddhism. He said, "The sutras (the holy books of Buddhism) say, 'All living creatures have Buddha nature.' You may not think much of a fish or a crab, but they too can become Buddhas. “野生动物也同样有佛性。如果一个人被野兽所杀,我们觉得很悲惨,我们会为那个人觉得难过。你们有没有想过,当你们杀了一条鱼,其他的鱼也认为这很悲惨,同样也会为这条鱼感到难过吗?” "Wild animals all have Buddha natures, too. If somebody gets killed by a wild animal, we think it's tragic. We feel sorry for that person. Hasn't it ever occurred to you that when you kill a fish, the other fish think it's tragic, and feel sorry for the dead fish?" 智者大师解释说,他之所以要挖一个池塘,就是为了让人们有地方将鱼蟹放生,而鱼蟹也可以安居乐命。他把他的池塘起名为放生池。 The Wise Master explained that he was making a pond so anybody who had a fish or crab could have a place to release it and let it live out its life in peace. He called his pond the Free Life Pond. 工人们都被感动了,那些曾经嘲笑智者大师的人也为自己的自私感到羞愧。他们全都皈依了佛教,并且再也不杀生吃肉了。 The workmen were moved, and the people who had laughed at him felt sorry for being so mean. They became Buddhists, and stopped killing animals to eat their meat. 其他的寺庙也沿袭了智者大师的做法。如果你有机会参观中国的佛寺,你很可能会看到放生池,里面生活着无忧无虑的鱼、蟹和乌龟等,这些动物也不用担心被人吃掉。 Other temples copied his idea. If you have a chance to visit a Chinese Buddhist temple, you can probably see their Free Life Pond, full of happy fish and crabs and turtles that are safe from the worry of being cooked and eaten. THE FREE LIFE POND 来自:VOA英语网 文章地址: http://www.tingvoa.com/html/20121130/96112.html