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水鏡回天錄
REFLECTIONS IN WATER AND MIRROR
TURNING BACK THE TIDE OF DESTINY

宣化上人撰述 一九八八年二月十二日 Composed by Venerable Master Hsuan Hua on February 12,1988
國際譯經學院記錄 Translated by the International Translation Institute

華盛頓

現在講美國開國的創始者,這位偉人的名字 叫華盛頓,所以現在全國到處有華盛頓街。華 盛頓活著沒那麼多,死了變成這麼多,幸虧他 不鬧鬼,否則人人都怕他。

華盛頓是位注重躬行實踐,以身作則的賢明 領袖,一般老百姓們對他心悅誠服。雖然身為 軍人,可是他不用軍人的勢力壓迫百姓,他仍 以德服人之方法,來領導國家,令人民走向正 路,使老百姓都安居樂業,有相當的工作,正 常的收入,暖衣足食才能睡著覺﹔若吃不飽、 穿不暖,則睡覺也睡不著。令衣食都安定,這 是國家元首的治國方法。

當時英、法兩國爭奪加拿大,想拿它來作為 殖民地,為利而戰,為利而爭。世界為何有戰 爭?就是因為想爭奪利益。若大家能互相不爭 ,世界就能太平。不爭什麼?不爭利益。世界 人類互相貪、互相爭、互相求、互相欺騙、自 私自利、打妄語,這到底為了什麼?就為了一 個「利」字。利字真是厲害!有利就有害,為 了爭利,令自己的人民受到很大的傷害,所謂 「率土地而食人肉,爭地以戰,殺人盈野;爭 城以戰,殺人盈城。」為了爭土地,互相吃人 肉,不過這是變相的吃法。

英、法為爭加拿大這塊肥肉而戰。當時華盛 頓參加軍隊,因為戰爭有功,故升為陸軍少校 (營長)。英國用壓迫的手段想唯利是圖,便 以印花稅為導火線,引起戰爭,華盛頓便率眾 而起,被大家擁護推舉為總司令,對英宣戰, 對抗英國不平等、不自由、不公平的壓力,戰 爭經歷七年而勝利。

一般做總司令、大將軍的人,戰後一定還想 得到名譽、權利及地位。可是這位華盛頓懂得 做人的哲學。功成名遂,順天之道,便解甲歸 田,自力更生,退休了。老百姓因為他的品節 清高,什麼也不要了,不貪、不爭、不求,不 為自己而戰,為討一個公道,令世人得到公平 待遇,便擁護選他為第一屆總統,建立美利堅 合眾國,勵精圖治,創立民主、自由、平等, 故又連選任第二屆總統。我相信那時候的選舉 是自由投票選舉,絕對不會像現在選舉一個市 長都要用幾千萬。買一個市長要花費幾千萬, 那麼選舉一個總統,不知要用多少錢?若那時 候的選舉需要這麼多錢,我相信華盛頓沒有這 個財力來選舉總統。雖然兩百年前,我不在場 ,我深信當時的選舉,不是今天的選舉,不牽 涉任何人事問題,是最公平及光明磊落的。

華盛頓在被推選為第三屆總統時,毅然退休 。於一七九九年十 二月十四日撒手塵寰。美國 人為紀念其功勳,國都名為華盛頓,尊為國父 ,每年定期紀念他。

贊曰:
世風日下    人心不古
天降偉人    開疆展土
創建自由    謀求幸福
民安物富    資源充足

「世風日下」:社會的風氣越來越壞,「人心 不古」:現在的人唯以虛偽欺詐為能事,不及 古人的純樸及淳厚。「天降偉人,開疆展土」 :上天想把世界改變好,故降下一個偉人,賢 而有德的領袖,創立美國。「創建自由」:他 為老百姓創建平等自由,「謀求幸福」。「民 安物富」:人民安居樂業,物質豐富,「資源 充足」。

又說偈曰:
應運而生華盛頓    提倡共和美利堅
正義征服英國隊    公平戰勝納稅錢
勳業彪炳隱身退    德感百姓又當權
司法立律行仁政    選舉制度億萬年

「應運而生華盛頓,提倡共和美利堅」:華 盛頓開創美利堅共和國是應運而生﹔天到時候 應該生出這樣的人才。「正義征服英國隊」: 他主張正義,打敗壓迫的英軍。「公平戰勝納 稅錢」:他戰勝因為他主張公平,不應向百姓 納重稅。「勳業彪炳隱身退」:他做總司令打 敗英軍,功成名退,不想再戀棧當總司令,念 念不捨。「德感百姓又當權」:他的德行感化 老百姓,再度推選他為總統。「司法立律行仁 政」:美國開國,政府以立法、行政、司法三 權分立,互相做榜樣,互相合作,行好的政策 ,保持平衡。「選舉制度億萬年」:不花錢的 選舉才是真正的選舉﹔花錢買票的是假的選舉 。這種公平正直的選舉制度會流傳很遠。

雖然兩百年前,我不在場,我深信當時的選 舉,不是今天的選舉,不牽涉任何人事問題 ,是最公平及光明磊落的。

Though I wasn't there two hundred years ago, I seriously believe that the election that took place at time was the fairest and most aboveboard, and it would not have involved political influence like today's elections.

GEORGE WASHINGTON

Now we are talking about the founder of America. The name of this great man was George Washington. That is why there are places named 'Washington' all over the country. There are Washington Streets everywhere. Of course when he was living, there were not so many 'Washingtons'. His namesakes proliferated after he died. It's fortunate that he's not actually here haunting us, otherwise everybody would be afraid of him.

Washington was a virtuous and intelligent leader whose emphasis was on being a role model by means of personal example. In general, citizens have always sincerely and heartily admired him. Although he was a military man, he didn't oppress people with the power of his army. Winning their hearts with virtue, he put his country and fellow countrymen on the right track so that they could all live comfortably by means of a satisfying occupation. With a suitable position and a decent salary, people will have enough food and clothing, and they can sleep well. If they do not have enough food to eat or clothes to keep them warm, they will not "sleep tight." The best way for a national leader to govern his country is to offer the basic citizens the basic security and comforts of food, clothing, and shelter.

At that time Britain and France were both striving to colonize Canada. It was a war of self-interest, a fight for self-benefit. Why is there war in the world? It's because of conflict of interests. If everybody would not fight, the world would be at peace. What is it that we shouldn't fight for? We shouldn’t fight for advantages; but the human race is greedy. They like fighting one another, seeking advantages, cheating, being selfish, benefiting their own selfish interests and lying to each other. Ultimately, what is it for? It is because of the word, "interests." This word is very fierce. Whenever there are "interests," there is harm. Because of fighting for interests, one's countrymen suffer seriously. That's what's been called, "Making the land devour human flesh." When territorial disputes are the grounds for fighting, slaughtered men fill the fields; when a struggle for a city is the reason for the fight, slaughtered men fill the city. They "devour" human flesh in a conflict of territory, only the devouring takes an altered form.

When Britain and France fought for the "fat piece of meat," Canada, George Washington was in the British army. He was promoted to the rank of lieutenant colonel because of his success in leading the fight. The inflammatory situation was in the when Britain tried to acquire revenue tyrannically by means of the Stamp Act and other revenue acts, so that war broke out. Washington led others to fight and was elected Commander. They declared war against Britain's oppressive injustice, Inequality, and lack of freedom. The war ended in victory after seven years.

Most people who were chief commanders or generals would have welcomed the prestige, power and position after a victory. But Washington understood the philosophy of men, so after his commission succeeded with glory, he followed Heaven's wishes and retreated to the farm. He then retired and supported himself. He was neither covetous, contentious nor acquisitive. He didn't fight the war for himself; he fought the war for justice and equal treatment for all people of the world. All his countrymen found him to be of such refined and upright character and demanding nothing, so they elected him as the first President. He organized the United States of America, laboring for a well-ordered government. He established democracy, liberty and equality for the people, and was re-elected as President for a second term. I believe election was done by voting freely at that time. It wouldn't be the same as now, when to be elected mayor requires tens of millions of dollars. If buying a mayor's seat requires tens of millions of dollars, how much would it take to be elected President? If it had required that much to join the election, I believe Washington would have had no such money-power to become a candidate for President. Though I wasn't there two hundred years ago, I seriously believe that the election that took place during that time was the fairest and most aboveboard, and it would not have involved political influence like today's elections.

George Washington retired resolutely after the second term. On December 14, 1799, he left this world. In commemoration of his contributions, Americans named the capital after him and he is honored as The Father of the Country. Every year we celebrate his birthday.

A Verse of Praise says:
The customs of society are deteriorating.
The minds of people are not the same as in ancient times.
Heavens sent a great man to the world
To develop the territory and expand the frontiers.
He founded liberty,
And worked for the happiness of all
People lived comfort with plentiful goods.
Sources of materials were sufficient.

The customs of society are deteriorating. The minds of people are not the same as in ancients times. The customs of society becoming worse and worse. People nowadays are skillful at being dishonest and cheating. They are not as simple and honest as men of ancient times. Heaven sent a great man to the world, to develop the territory and expand the frontiers. Heaven wants to change this world for the better, so it sent a great man, a worthy and virtuous leader, to found the United States of America. He founded liberty, and worked for the happiness of all. He established equality and freedom for his countrymen and worked for their happiness. People lived in comfort with plentiful goods. Sources of materials were sufficient. People live peacefully with plenty of goods and provisions. Materials were abundant.

Another Verse says:
In accordance with destiny Washington was born.
He introduced the Republic of America.
He conquered the British army with justice.
He won the war for fair taxation.
He retreated at the peak of his success.
His virtue influenced his countrymen and he was re-elected.
He executed benevolent administration of law and order.
A true election system would last for a billion years.

In accordance with destiny Washington was born. He introduced the Republic of America. It was destined that Washington was born to develop the Republic of America. When it was the right time Heaven brought forth a man of talent. He conquered the British army with justice He advocated righteousness, and defeated the oppressive British army. He won the war for fair taxation. He won because he supported fairness. He disagreed with heavy taxation of his fellow men. He retreated at the peak of his success. He commanded the army and defeated the British, yet he retreated with honor. He was not attached to an unshakeable idea of being Chief Commander. His virtue influenced his countrymen and he was re-elected. His virtues moved his countrymen and they elected him again to be President. He executed benevolent administration of law and order. The United States is governed by three power-separated and cooperative branches: the legislative, the executive and the judicial. They check and balance each other and look to one others to practice good policy. A true election system would last for a billion years. An election that does not require spending is a true election. If one has to spend money to buy votes, it is a fake election. A fair and honest election system would last for a long time.

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