Time Will Tell The Truth 时间会说出真相


[1] 赠君一法决狐疑,不用钻龟与祝蓍。
[2] 试玉要烧三日满,辨材须待七年期。
[3] 周公恐惧流言日,王莽谦恭未篡时。
[4] 向使当初身便死,一生真伪复谁知?

— 白居易

Time Will Tell The Truth

[1] [I hereby] give you a method for resolving doubts, that does not need boring of tortoise shells and praying with milfoil grass. [Note 1: These are some traditional Chinese divination methods.]

[2] Testing jade needs burning for three days fully, and differentiating timber must wait for seven years’ period. [Note 2: These are some methods for checking the quality of these materials.]

[3] Duke Zhōu feared spreading of rumours in his days, and Wáng Mǎng was modest and respectful when yet to usurp. [Note 3: Duke Zhōu became the compiler of Rites Of Zhōu《周礼》in the Zhōu (周) Dynasty, while Wáng Mǎng became the usurper of the throne in the Western Hàn (西汉) Dynasty.]

[4] If at those times earlier with their lives then dying, of each one lifetime’s truthfulness and falseness, who again would know?

— Bái Jūyì
(Unrestrained Words’ Five Poems: Third Poem)

[Note 4: Until a person departs, with all of his or her past conduct looked at, including the final conduct, it is difficult to know if a person was truly more good or evil when alive.]

[Note 5: Yet, there are still those, whose some past deeds remain unknown after death. After we reach Pure Land, or become enlightened with the power to recollect others’ past lives, we can review them more completely.]

[Note 6: However, even when we do not know some of one another’s deeds now, the natural law of karma relentlessly ‘registers’ and justly operates, ‘keeping track’ of everything, while all Buddhas, many Bodhisattvas and gods are aware of that done and undone.]

[Note 7: In the mean time, there is no hurry to have ‘final judgement’ of any person on the whole, as people can and do change, for better or worse, some more readily and some less, often with alternating between good and evil. All we should do is ‘to regard (each) matter (objectively), and not (condemn or condone) the involved person (biasedly)’ (对事不对人), always with compassion and wisdom.]

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