兔死狗烹,鸟尽弓藏

這句話字面意思是什麼呢?狡猾的兔子死了,那麼用來追逐打獵的獵狗會被烹殺;鳥兒如果沒有了,那麼用來射殺鳥兒的好弓箭就會收藏起來,繼而老化消失。

這句話最早出自《史記·越世家》,范蠡即行逃走,臨逃走時寫了一封信給越王國的宰相文種。原文是如此描繪:范蠡遂去,自齊遺大夫種書曰:“蜚鳥盡,良弓藏;狡兔死,走狗烹。越王為人長頸鳥喙,可與共患難,不可與共樂。子何不去?”種見書,稱病不朝。人或讒種且作亂,越王乃賜種劍曰:“子教寡人伐吳七術,寡人用其三而敗吳,其四在子,子為我從先王試之。”種遂自殺。

意思是:范蠡即行逃走,臨逃走時寫了一封信給越王國的宰相文種,信上說:“狡兔死、走狗烹;飛鳥盡、良弓藏。勾踐頸項特別長而嘴象鷹嘴,這種人只可共患難不可共享樂,你最好盡快離開他。”文種看完信後,便稱病不再入朝。後來有人向越王進讒言說文種將要作亂,越王勾踐便送給文種一把劍,對他說:“你教給我七個滅人國家的方法,我只用了三個就把吳王國滅掉,還剩下四個方法,你拿到先王那裡去幫助先王試下吧。”文種於是自殺了。

另外一個是韓信臨刑前發出的這句話,《淮陰侯列傳》:“果若人言,‘狡兔死,走狗烹;飛鳥盡,良弓藏;敵國破,謀臣亡。’天下已定,我固當烹!

韓信幫助劉邦打江山,追趕項羽,追到滎陽時,按兵不走了。劉邦不知怎麼回事,去問蕭何,蕭何說:“他這是討封哩。”劉邦立時就封韓信為“三齊王”,就是與天王齊,與地王齊,與君王齊。還封他“五不死”,就是見天不死,見地不死,見君不死,沒有捆他的繩,沒有殺他的刀。韓信這才去追趕項羽,把項羽打敗,為劉邦打下了江山。

劉邦坐了江山後,怕韓信勢力大,壓了自家的天下,就想殺死韓信,可是自己親口封了韓信“三齊王”、“五不死”,怎麼殺他呢?他想了個殺韓信的辦法告訴了呂后。

呂后召韓信進宮,對韓信說:“你犯下了謀反罪,君王叫我殺你。”韓信說:“那不行,君王封我五不死的,這事我得當面和君王說說。”呂后說:“哼哼,你見不著君王了,你看看你來在了什麼地方?”韓信一看周圍陰森森的,往上看頂棚遮得嚴嚴的看不見一絲天,往下看地上鋪著毯子,看不見一點點地,又見不了君王,心裡不由叫苦。沒等韓信分辨,呂后又說:“君王封你’五不死’,我們都按君王的意思辦了。我知道你還要說:沒有捆你的繩,沒有殺你的刀,這些我們都不用。”說完,一揮手,兩旁幾十名宮女個個手拿棒鎚,一擁而上,團團圍住,一陣亂打,把韓信活活打死了。

這可是人性邪惡的最佳的解釋,尤其是體現在那些封建和極權的君王身上。  他們需要利用你的時候,你就得重用,為他賣命,作他的打手;他們覺得用完你的時候,就懷疑和甚至要除掉你。

以前開國的元勛和將帥們也是如此的一個一個地被打倒的。  所以,不要作這些人的狗和弓。

my shelter in times of trouble

My friend is a group leader in NA (Narcotics Anonymous).  He gave me one of their books called “Just for Today”.  I found that this book offers many insightful messages for everyone.

I like to share one of the messages: “I know that faith in my Higher Power will not calm the storms of life, but it will calm my heart.  I will let my faith shelter me in times of trouble”,

Do you have any shelter in times of trouble?  What is it?   For me, my shelter is God.  “God is our shelter and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble.  So we will not be afraid…”

“穩“需要怎樣”維”?

時常聽到“穩定才繁榮”、“穩定壓倒一切”和“維穩”這3個詞。 其實,我同意“穩定”的重要,但問題是我們所理解和講的“穩定”和“維穩”的定義似乎並不都一樣。

在封建獨裁的社會裏,“穩定”就是人民不可以有不同和反對的聲音和行動發出來。  在”虛榮‘和面子“之上,其實就是出於對失去控制、錢勢和甚至政權(當然最後就是性命)的恐懼,   “維穩“就是動用一切的人力物力來壓制和封鎖。

在有人權和自由的世界裏,“穩定”不代表沒有反對和抗議。  其實,除了人民的生命和財產得到保障外,人們的反對和抗議之權得到保護和聆聽,輿論得到保障,法律得到執行落實,政府得到監督,都是”穩定“的表現和”維穩“的方法。

我都需要的穩定的生活,而我所在的社會基本上就是有這樣的穩定。實在感恩有這樣的穩定,也有賴每個公民的維持。

一行的治愈和繼續前行

雖然我是基督徒和牧師,但是我卻對一行禪師十分的敬佩。  他的正念和活在當下的教導也治愈我許多的心靈創傷。  一行當年在法國創立了梅村道場為了收留和醫治飽受戰爭創傷折磨的越南同胞們。當人們透過屬靈的操練和靜修使他們的心靈創傷得到治愈,他們才能有足夠的内在力量繼續他們的人生道路和使命,承擔責任和面對臨到人生的種種。  人要行得更遠,就要經常有停頓、休息和療傷的時候。  我建立這個網站和發短文給人,為的是讓更多的人的内心得到休息和愈合,然後再出發。

Listening with the ear of our heart

I took my car to the auto shop for regular maintenance.    While I was waiting for the service, I opened the book “a life of being, having, and doing enough” by Wayne Muller.  His writing on “listening with the ear of our heart” touched my heart instantly:

“When our attention is bombarded daily, overwhelmed and saturated with the relentless clanging of so much speaking, announcing, sharing, selling, convincing, offering, presenting, discussing, declaring, and demanding – how can ever find sufficient quiet to listen deeply to anything?  When can we fully attend those still, small voices of inner wisdom that reveal to us what is good, necessary, or nourishing?…..prayers of invocation …asking God to “come here, be with us and bless us”…Who are we…to assume God is not here and everywhere already – and worse, that we must call him as we would a family pet, to come?  The more humble, honorable – and accurate – prayer would recognize it is not God who is missing; rather, it is we who need to show up, to open our closed and fearful hearts, to listen with an ear bent toward the divine”.

When I followed the prayer he offered, I prayed with tear.  For a while, I have not been being mindful of God’s presence and I have not been being attentive to God’s voice.  If you are willing, join me to do and experience the following prayer:

“God, I beg you to cleanse our distracted hearts, that we may center ourselves in you, feel you here, guiding us, so we may listen and attend to your wisdom and guidance for us”.

你親近神,神親近你

在他的書”你親近神,神親近你“,楊牧谷牧師寫道,

”‘神的話臨到耶利米’,‘神的話臨到以西結’, 這根本就是一種相遇。  ‘相遇’一字原來的意思,指大鷹飛降下來抓食的動作。  神的話語‘抓着’我們,如同大鷹抓着小鷄一樣。。。爲什麽神的話語是一種相遇呢?  相遇的意思之一,就是:’你讀神的話語,同時也讓神的話語來讀你‘。 當你判斷和明白神的話語如此說之後,也要讓神的話語來判斷你:我是否這樣做呢?  我是否多次重複犯罪? 我既明白了,下一回應該怎樣作呢?  這就是’對話‘關係的意思。  許多時候,我們往往讀神的話語,卻沒有讓神的話語來讀我們。。。當我們把聖經帶入生活之中,便常常有被觸動,叫我們悟出聖經的意思。  很多時候,我們在現實生活中重遇上昔日聖經發生的場景。  就是因爲我們真的把神的話語帶進生活中,那樣我們就能體驗雅各書四章8節的結論:“你們親近神,神就親近你們。’”

各位,我們應當以“讓神的話語抓着我們”的心態去讀神的話語。 這樣我們才能把聖經帶入生活中;在生活的日常場景裏,才能與神相遇,感受和經理到,原來神與我們是如此的親近。這也正是我自己個人的屬靈經驗和見證。

Mother’s living stories

Have you heard about “The Mother’s Living Stories” project?  From 1995-2005, Mothers’ Living Stories,  a San Francisco Bay Area-based nonprofit project, listened to ill mothers and developed services and resources to support them.  Many trained volunteers went to the (especially young) mothers’ home, sat by their side for many hours, and listened to them tell about their lives.  The stories were for the dying mothers’ children.

These mothers would never see their children grow up.  And their children would never be able to ask their mother about her life, about her dreams, her disappointments and her….  They would never have the opportunity to ask: “How should I love?  How do I know what is right?  What di you do when you were my age? …”

The volunteers asked the mothers to tell them everything they would tell their growing children for when they are older, for when they need a mother’s loving words to them what they need to hear.

The volunteers then collected those stories, compiled edited transcripts and put it all in a beautiful box decorated with photos from the mothers’ life, friends, and family.  The stories would be able to be kept safe until the right time, until they are needed, and the children are ready to hear them.

How many of us would have treasured such a gift from a loved one passed too soon?  How many questions would we ask, if we could?

How many of us would feel the need and be ready to ask while our beloved mother (and father) still alive.

It is not too late to spend your time to ask and get to know more about your beloved ones.  It is not too late to seek for their guidance and wisdom.

事奉的首要追求

事奉上帝的人首先要追求上帝與他同行。我們要回應上帝的呼召,按祂的計劃行事,才是以上帝為中心的事奉;而在這基礎上,我們可以祈求上帝同行。當有上帝的同行時,我們就是在上帝眼前蒙恩。 在上帝眼前蒙恩不一定等於在世上事事成功;在上帝眼前蒙恩代表在艱難困苦的時候有上帝的同在。

在你來說,有上帝的同在又是否比一切的其它資源和方案策略更給你帶來信心,平安,盼望和力量呢?

其實有上帝的同在不也是我們的屬靈追求嗎?

Definition of Church Planting

I have been discerning and preparing new church initiatives, I got Aubrey Malphurs’ book, “The Nuts and Bolts of Church Planting: A Guide for Starting Any Kind of Church”. In this book, Aubrey Malphurs writes: “I define church planting as an exhausting but exciting venture of faith, the planned process of starting and growing local churches based on Jesus’s promise to build his church and in obedience to his Great Commission”.

Why do we need to plant a new church? We are going to plant and grow a church in obedience to his Great Commission. Since this is an exhausting venture, I need fellow pilgrims. Your prayers and partnership (in many different ways) are invited and appreciated. For the sake of His Kingdom Ministry, let’s follow His way together.

生命的品質

在他的書“生命的品質”裡,周國平寫道:

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人來到世上,首先是一個生命。 生命,原本是單純的。 可是,人卻活得越來越複雜了。 許多時候,我們不是作為生命在活,而是作為慾望、野心、身份、稱謂在活,不是為了生命在活,而是為了財富、權力、地位、名聲在活。 這些社會堆積物遮蔽了生命,我們把它們看得比生命更重要,為之耗費一生的精力,不去聽也聽不見生命本身的聲音了。。。

在今天的時代,讓生命回歸單純,這不但是一種生活藝術,而且是一種精神修煉。 耶穌說:“除非你們改變,像小孩一樣,你們絕不能成為天國的子民。”那些在名利場上折騰的人,他們既然聽不見自己生命的聲音,就更聽不見靈魂的聲音了。

人不只有一個肉身生命,更有一個超越於肉身的內在生命,它被恰當地稱做靈魂。 外在生命來自自然,內在生命應該有更高的來源,不妨稱之為神。 二者的辯證關係是,只有外在生命狀態單純之時,內在生命才會向你開啟,你活得越簡單,你離神就越近。 在一定意義上,人生覺悟就在於透過社會堆積物去發現你的自然的生命,又透過肉身生命去發現你的內在的生命,靈魂一旦敞亮,你的全部人生就有了明燈和方向。

說到底,人活的就是一個價值觀,不同的價值觀造就不同的人生。 我自己覺得,我的價值觀已經相當明晰而簡單,圍繞著兩個詞,即人最寶貴的兩樣東西,一是生命,二是靈魂。 老天給了每個人一條命,一顆心,把命照看好,把心安頓好,人生即是圓滿。 把命照看好,就是要保持生命的單純,珍惜平凡生活。 把心安頓好,就是要積累靈魂的財富,注重內在生活。 平凡生活體現了生命的自然品質,內在生活體現了生命的精神品質,把這兩種生活過好,生命的整體品質就是好的。

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朋友,你生命的整體品質可好?

也許是時候學和去把命照顧好和把心安頓好了。

Gender, process or fact?

As a Christian and an Anglican priest (not only because of Christian identity and vocation, but also my passion), I love to reach out to the people in the community. One group of people I have never met personally are transgender. Lately, I start to read a book called “Gender: Your Guide – A GENDER-FRIENDLY PRIMER ON What to Know, What to Say, and What do Do in the New Gender Culture” by Lee Airton.

In this book, Lee Airton writes, “transgender people were assigned a sex and corresponding gender category at birth, but this assignment doesn’t reflect who we are”. In the book, Lee explains how gender works from the perspective of gender as an ongoing, lifelong process.

For me, I am in a lifelong journey/path to be true manhood. I am still learning and becoming a man I was designed by God to be. From this point of view, I experience & see gender as an ongoing, lifelong process.

當你看到有人寫簡體字時。。。

在社交媒體和群衆裏,我時常發現有好些人對人寫簡體字非常敏感,有時甚至介乎于拒絕、驅逐和攻擊的程度。 當然,我可以理解其中的一些原因,小心謹慎和防備都是有其需要。 但是并不是每一個寫簡體字的人都是你所想象的。 其實,我可以說大部分寫簡體字的人并不是你所想象的。 只是因爲他們從小就在簡體字的環境裏的緣故,很自然地在寫貼文和回應時就用了簡體字罷了。 請不要因爲他們的字體來定義他們 (所表達的和行爲才是重點)。 當然,每一個人都有自己的看法和處事選擇。

The most precious valuable gift you can offer

In his book “a life of being have doing enough”, Wayne Muller wrote:

“Perhaps the greatest wealth you possess, the most precious valuable gift you can ever hope to offer any human being, is this one, simple, true things: You. Your Presence. Showing up. Being in the company of another, undistracted, unhurried, with an open heart, gentle hands, and a patient soul. Willing and able to listen, do something or do nothing, willing to be surprised by whatever emerges in the soil of sharing your present, loving company with another human being”.

How often have you offered this gift to others? How often have you received this gift from others? Do you value this the most precious valuable gift?

Beyond the ordinary teachings of forgiveness

I resonate with Derek Lin that “Egoism is something we created for ourselves, so it is something we can dismiss with a simple decision. Without egoism there is nothing bruise, hurt, or wound. Without damages or injuries to the ego, pride, or dignity, there is also nothing to forgive. There is how the sage transcends beyond the ordinary teachings of forgiveness. By recognizing that the true self can never be hurt, and it is only the false projections of the ego that are damaged by criticisms and insults, we bypass the constant striving to forgive others.” (from his book “The Tao of Daily Life”)

In here, Derek Lin is not discussing about right or wrong. Instead, Derek Lin points out to us the ancient way of “protecting” us from hurting by criticisms and insults. “Nothing to forgive” in here means we are not carrying negative feelings with us everywhere. That negativity won’t become a burden to us. This is not about right or wrong and if the person hurt us need to be responsible. What Derek Lin has offered is the ancient way to be free and safe from criticisms, insults and our egoism.

對大中華民族主義之反思

剛讀畢劉看平所寫的書“對大中華民族主義之反思”, 我這個曾經“大中華膠”對他的分析深感認同. 劉看平從歷史和客觀來幫助讀者了解大中華/大一統在歷史上的演變和發展。 他也幫助讀者認識大中華愛國主義背後的宗教式思維和玻璃心。 正如劉看平在書中所流露的,我們作出反思並沒有我們使不再愛我們的文化和故鄉。我們更自由和更客觀清晰而已。