122. The Way to Nurture Life


1 Although mankind’s intellect ranks the highest in all of creation; however, his lifespan will be no longer than that of an animal if he fails to nurture life.

1 人雖為萬物之靈,但是不知養生保命,其生命之短暫與動物一般。

2 Even small animals like foxes know enough to cultivate, though only for selfish purposes. Fox-spirits draw in the sublimated essence of heaven, earth, sun, and moon. They transform themselves into human form so they can steal mankind’s treasures.

2 就是小動物像狐狸,也懂得修煉,只是牠們都是為自身打算。牠們先要吸收天地日月精華,修煉成人身,然後再盜取人類的寶貝。

3 Only mankind has the three treasures of jing, qi, and shen. Ordinary animals do not have them, which is why a human body is a rare gift.

3 只有人類獨有精、氣、神三寶。普通的動物都沒有,所以說人身難得。

4 But after a few dozen summers and winters, people who fail to cultivate themselves meet a quick and an all too ordinary end.

4 但是人生數十寒暑,不明修煉的人,一下子就平平凡凡的過去了。

5 Some are buried in the ground, where they decay together with the grass and trees; some are cremated into ashes. None of them understands the Dao of nurturing and lengthening life.

5 有的土葬,與草木同朽;有的火葬變成灰末;但都不懂得養生、長生之道。

6 Thus, in quiet sitting, we first teach the Dao of nurturing life, and then cultivate the three treasures of jing, qi, and shen.

6 因此,靜坐首先要講養生之道,然後修煉精、氣、神三寶。

7 All animals, including man, instinctively seek food and seek a mate. Seeking food is to maintain life; seeking a mate is to propagate life.

7 凡是動物包括人類在內,都具有兩個生存本能—求食、求偶。求食是為了維持生命;求偶是為了延續生命。

8 This is pointed out in Mencius[30]: “It is in one’s nature to eat and seek a mate.” “Nature” is what comes innately. The instincts one is born with.

8 《孟子》一書講到「食、色,性也」,即是指此。「性」是先天帶來,與生俱來的本能。

9 Humans, who seek to enlighten their lives beyond the instincts for food and sex, have to cultivate the Dao. They must understand the Dao of nurturing life.

9 人類在食、色兩種本能之外,若欲光大生命,就要修道,就要懂得養生之道。

10 What I call the Dao of nurturing life is simply quiet sitting. Moreover, it is completely in tune with scientific principles. Whether we speak of dynamic or quiet practice, both are ways to temper the living person.

10 所謂養生之道,就是靜坐。它完全合乎科學原理。養生之道,不論動功、靜功,都不外乎是生命的鍛煉。

11 Dynamic practice emphasizes tempering the physical body. Quiet practice emphasizes tempering the spirit.

11 動功注重形體的鍛煉,靜功注重精神的鍛煉。

12 Quiet sitting is the inner working between physiology, psychology, physical dynamics and meditation. The underlying principle for cultivation is “dual cultivation of self-nature and physical body.”

12 靜坐就是生理、心理與動功、靜功的配合。而下手修煉的總原則就是「性命雙修」。

13 Self-nature is the innate “spirit-nature.” Physical body is the acquired “flesh.” This is the process of cultivating “spirit and flesh” at the same time.

13 性是先天「性靈」,命是後天「肉體」,亦即「靈魂與肉體」同時修煉。

Chinese Original Quiet Sitting, October, 1991


[30] Mencius is a book of conversations Mencius (372-289 BC) had with kings of the time, is one of the Four Books that Zhu Xi [1130-1200, a leading figure of Neo-Confucian scholar of the Song Dynasty in China] grouped as the core of orthodox Neo-Confucian thought.