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《菩提田》

 

BODHI FIELD

陶淵明詩講錄(續)
Lectures on Tao Yuanming's Poems (continued)

葉嘉瑩教授講 By Professor Yeh Chia-ying
郇若慧‧比丘尼恒音 英譯 English translation by Josey Shun and Bhikshuni Heng Yin

另一些人是追求「影響」的,他們注重的是名譽、聲望。剛才我說了,人生是很短暫的。有很多哲學,很多宗教都是要回答和解決人生的這樣的一些問題。因此,基督教說人有永生;佛教說人有來生;中國的儒家,因為不是宗教,所以沒有說人有永生,也沒有說有來生。那麼中國的儒教追求什麼呢?中國的儒教所追求的是不朽。所以《左傳》說,人類的肉體生命雖然是短暫的,但是你的精神、你的事功可以流傳下來,可以影響後代人,對他們有貢獻,有好處。

所以他說「太上有立德」;「德」是好的品德;其次有「立功」,留下功業;其次有「立言」,「言」是指留下好的言語教訓、思想。所以「影」就是儒家所說的身後的名。杜甫有一首懷念李白的詩——《夢李白》說:「千秋萬歲名,寂寞身後事。」。就是說的即使留了名,就算是你有了千秋萬歲的聲名,可是,那個時候,你在哪裡呢?那不也是「寂寞身後事」了嗎?所以「影」也是空幻的。

從陶淵明的思想來看,「立善常所欣,誰當為汝譽。」《神影形》是說儒家說的「立德」、「立功」、「立言」當然是不錯的,是「立善常所欣」,是我所喜歡的。可是「誰當為汝譽」呢?誰會給你一個美好的讚譽呢?因此你所追求的名——「影」不也是空幻的嗎?

好,我們現在只是簡單地介紹他的思想。關於他的這些思想,當我們正式講到他的《飲酒》詩的時候,都會詳細地討論的。總之,他的意思是說我們人生的意義在於精神上要自由:既不為肉體的形體欲望所拘束,也不要為後世的聲名,或者別人的讚譽所拘束。

世界上的芸芸眾生,不是為了利,物質上,身體上的所得,就是為了名。不是形,就是影。你如果被這些個「名韁利索」,外表的虛浮名聲所束縛,你就會為名利作奴隸。這個名就像馬的韁繩,把你捆起來了;你要是追求物質上的財、利,它就像一條繩索把你糾纏住了。你的精神就沒有自由了。

所以陶淵明最後說,你所得到的,不應是「形」與「影」,而應該是「神」,即精神上的自由。一旦你精神上獲得自由了,你不但不被名所拘束,也不被利所拘束;你不但不被名利所拘束,你也不被生死所拘束了。正如他在《歸去來辭》中說的:「樂夫天命復奚疑」。

又如《神釋》最後所說「應盡便須盡,無復獨多慮」。「盡」是終了,什麼時候你的生命是應該終了,便須任隨其終了。不但名利之間你不再執著了,在生死之間也無須執著了。這樣你就「無復獨多慮」,你就不會再單單地顧慮、憂愁與煩惱了。這就是陶淵明所追求的人生意義。

我剛才所講的這一段話,是補充上一講中關於陶淵明的思想的。其實陶淵明總體上來講,還是以中國儒家思想為主的。他同時結合了道家和佛家的思想影響。要知道東晉那個時候,佛學是很流行的,尤其是在陶淵明的故鄉。

那麼陶淵明他一輩子,有沒有出來作過官呢?陶淵明的詩裡邊,曾經寫過這樣的話:「少時壯且厲,撫劍獨行游。誰言行游近?張掖至幽州。」他說當我年少的時候,我那時是「壯且厲」。這個「壯」是兩方面的壯:首先是年少力壯;其次是說精神上也是強壯的。「厲」是勇敢的意思,有勇氣的樣子。

他說我「年少壯且厲」,曾經「撫劍獨行游」;我的手按著寶劍的把柄,去四方周遊。「誰言行游近?張掖至幽州。」他說我曾經去過很遠的地方,從張掖(張掖在今相當於西北的甘肅一帶),我還到過幽州(幽州在今河北一帶)。

可是你以為陶淵明眞的去過甘肅、河北一帶嗎?沒有;他從來沒有到那麼遠的地方去過。因為上次我們講到東晉時代的背景時說過,當時中國北方被外族佔領了,建立了十六個小國家。就是說,那個時候的北方是淪陷到外族的手裡了。陶淵明從來也沒到過黃河流域的北方。

待續

Some people seek the "shade" of influence. They want fame and honor. I said earlier that life is very short. Many philosophies and religions have attempted to answer and resolve these problems about life. Thus, Christianity claims that there is eternal life. Buddhism says that there are future lives. However, Chinese Confucianism, not being a religion, does not talk about eternal life or future lives.

What then is the aim of Chinese Confucianism? Immortality. The Zuozhuan [Commentary on the Spring and Autumn Annals] says that our physical life is short, but our spirit and achievements can last for generations and bring tremendous benefit to posterity. 

Therefore it is said, "The superior man cultivates virtue." 'Virtue' refers to good character. Next, one should cultivate and leave behind merit, and finally, cultivate and leave behind worthy words, that is, wholesome teachings and ideas. Therefore, the word "shade" refers to posthumous fame in Confucianism.

In memory of Li Bai, Du Fu wrote a poem "Dreaming of Li Bai," which says: "Fame that lasts for thousands of autumns and millions of years comes only after a lonely life." Even if you achieve renown that lasts for millions of years, where will you be then? Isn't it the result of a lonely life? So, 'shade' is also an illusion.

Tao Yuanming's "Exposition of the Spirit" says: "I always feel joyful in doing good deeds, but who will admire me?" This means it is certainly good to cultivate virtue, merit, and worthy words, for these things bring joy. But who will bestow praise and renown upon you? Therefore, isn't the fame, the "shade," which you seek nothing but an illusion?

We shall only introduce his ideas now, but we will discuss them in detail when we talk about his "Drinking Poems." In general, his point was that the purpose of our lives should be spiritual freedom, not the indulgence of physical desires or the pursuit of posthumous fame or others' praise.

Ordinary people either seek material and physical benefits, or else they seek fame. They want either 'shape' or 'shade'. If you are tied up by the "reins of fame and the rope of wealth," you are a slave to fame and wealth. Fame ties you up the way reins restrain a horse. If you pursue wealth, which is like a rope, you will be bound up and lose your spiritual freedom.

Thus, Tao Yuanming said in the end: "What you acquire should not be shape or shade, but spirit, that is, spiritual freedom." Once you attain the spiritual freedom, you won't be tied up by fame or wealth. You won't be restrained by fame or wealth, nor by birth and death.lt is just as his poem "Return" says, "I enjoy being what I am without any doubts."

Also, in "Exposition of the Spirit," he said, "Whatever is meant to end must end. Don't even give it a thought.." Whenever your life comes to its end, you simply let it go. You do not hanker after fame and wealth, nor do you cling to birth and death. You "don't even give it a thought"; don't be worried and anxious all by yourself. That was the meaning that Tao Yuanming pursued in life.

What I just said was to elaborate on what I said about Tao Yuanming's ideas in my last lecture. In general, Tao Yuanming's thinking was based on Chinese Confucianism, although he was also influenced by Taoism and Buddhism. We should know that Buddhism was very popular in the Eastern Jin Dynasty, especially in the area around Tao Yuanming's hometown.

Was Tao Yuanming ever a government official in his life? Here are few lines from his poem: "When I was young, I was strong and brave. I carried my sword and traveled alone. Who says that I have only been to nearby places? I have traveled from Zhangyi to Youzhou." He said that he was strong and brave when he was young. The word 'strong' implies both physical and spiritual strength. 'Brave' means he was courageous and gallant.

"I carried my sword and traveled alone." I always held my sword while I was traveling. "Who says that I have only been to nearby places? I have traveled from Zhangyi to Youzhou." He said that he had roamed far and wide, from Zhangyi (present-day Gansu Province, in northwest China) to Youzhou (present-day Hebei Province).

Do you think Tao Yuanming had actually been to the provinces of Gansu and Hebei? No. He never traveled that far. When we talked about the background of the Eastern Jin Dynasty last time, we learned that northern China was occupied by foreigners who set up sixteen little countries at that time. In other words, northern China was in the hands of foreigners. So Tao Yuanming had never been to the north side of the Yellow River.

To be continued

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