67. Accumulating Virtues Is Linked with “Virtues of Speech” and “Hidden Virtues”


1 What is a hidden virtue? It is a virtue that was exercised unknowingly. Everyone knows how to accumulate virtues and merits. Do good deeds. Each deed that is kind counts for one virtue. Doing a hundred good deeds counts for one hundred virtues. Hidden virtues are most significant.

1 什麼是陰騭?就是陰德的意思。大家都知道要積德,要培功立德。做一件好事,就是一德。做一百件善事,就是百德。其中最重要的是陰德。

2 There are people who have tremendous hardships at home, and who are unable to feed themselves. They are ashamed of losing face; to save face, they tell no one. Many have very nice parents and families, but they failed in their respective careers, and are down on their luck; therefore, they are unable to support parents or wife, or provide for their own health needs. Since they have told no one, none of their relatives or friends is aware of their difficulties. This is referred to as “hidden poverty,” and the act of helping hidden poverty is called a hidden virtue.

2 有一種人,家裡困難萬分,明天就沒有飯吃了,但他為了他的體面,不好意思向別人講。他的家庭、父母都很好,但是他的運氣不好,樣樣事業都失敗,又要養父母、妻子,身體又不好,親戚朋友也不知道他的困難。這種人稱做「隱貧」。如果能夠暗中幫助他,這是一種陰德。

3 Most women put great emphasis on their reputation and integrity. Some are willing to defend them with their lives. Not slandering a woman’s reputation and integrity is called virtue of speech. The virtue of speech is also a hidden virtue.

3 還有婦女非常重視她們的名節,常常以生命來保護她們的名節。不毀謗女人的名譽,稱之為口德。口德也是一種陰德。

4 One careless act of gossip can ruin someone else’s reputation and integrity. Therefore, we must take special care of respecting a woman’s reputation, integrity, and honor. This is called “keeping the virtue of speech.”

4 有人專門講張家長、李家短。一個不小心,把別人一生的名節都給毀了。所以對於婦人、女子,一定要特別尊重人家的名節、名譽,這就是留口德。

5 In a worse scenario, some like to provoke right and wrong in secrecy, creating conflicts. People who create or promote conflicts have no “virtue of speech” and their acts injure their hidden virtues. Lord Wenchang’s Text of Hidden Virtues emphasizes the importance of virtue of speech and hidden virtues.

5 甚至,有人喜歡在暗中撥弄是非、製造爭端,這種人既無口德,又傷陰德。《文昌帝君陰騭文》就是要大家特別注重口德、陰德。

The Leili’a Dao Center, July 2, 1992