retrospective: 馮煖買義的故事 buying righteousness…

Written by Frank M. Lin 3/26/2017 3:55 am @ Hayward, California – Added English translation of the story.  See below…  義 standards for righteousness.  So this is the story about doing the right thing.

Written by Frank M. Lin 12/31/2016 9:17 am @ San Francisco, California – This is one of my favorite true tales from the old days and it was taught in elementary school back in Taiwan.  It happened around 2300 years ago.

Version 1: 馮煖買義:

他的食客當中有名為馮煖(音宣)者,有一次孟嘗君請他到封地「薛」去收租,臨走時馮煖問孟嘗君,收到那麼多錢,要我買些什麼東西回來?孟嘗君說,你看家裡缺什麼就買什麼好了。馮煖到了薛地,看到當地的農人,誠樸勤勞,生活窮困,實在付不出應交的租金!馮煖就把大家的借據收來,一把火燒了,並說:「孟嘗君體諒大家辛勞,年歲不好,今年的租金全免了。」村民萬分感激孟賞君的恩德,謝聲不絕。回到家裡,孟嘗君問他,買什麼回來了?他回答說,我看家裡什麼都不缺,我就買「義」回來了。孟嘗君雖不悅,然亦未加深責。後來孟嘗君因為位高權重,引起齊湣王的疑忌,就免去他相國的職務,孟嘗君只好返回薛邑。而在回封地途中,百里之外,薛邑百姓扶老攜幼,歡迎他回故居。這時,孟嘗君回頭對馮諼說:「先生為我買的義,今天終於看到了!」

Version 2:

 孟嘗君是春秋時代的三大公子之一。馮煖是孟嘗君的食客,投靠孟嘗君時生活狀況不好,孟嘗君並沒有把他當成重要的手下。某天,馮煖拿著劍鞘敲牆壁唱歌:「寶劍啊!我們回家去吧!吃飯的時候沒有魚吃啊!」被孟嘗君聽到了,他也不生氣,就告訴手下,給這個唱歌的人吃飯的時候加個菜。過了幾天,馮煖又拿著劍鞘在唱歌:「寶劍啊!我們回家去吧!出門的時候沒有車坐啊!」孟嘗君聽了,吩咐手下給他派輛車。馮煖此後就不再唱歌了。

一陣子後,孟嘗君想派人到「薛地」這個地方收稅,馮煖站出來毛遂自薦,
孟嘗君不認得他,問手下他是什麼人。手下告訴他:”就是那個拿劍鞘唱歌的人”。孟嘗君想,讓他試試也好。臨行之前,馮煖問他要不要買什麼東西回來,
孟嘗君想了想,說:”你覺得這個房子裡少了什麼,就給我買什麼回來吧!”

馮煖帶著稅單到了薛地,召集了所有的住戶,在他們面前,把這些稅單一把火全燒了,居民們歡聲雷動;馮煖告訴這些住戶:”這是孟嘗君給你們的恩德”,
然後立刻回去了。孟嘗君覺得很奇怪,以前收稅的人一去好幾天,怎麼馮煖
一會兒就回來了。問他買了什麼,馮煖只說買了「義」,孟嘗君莫名其妙,
根本不知道他做了什麼;再問起收稅的情形,馮煖據實以告,孟嘗君氣的甩袖而去。

幾年後,孟嘗君受人陷害而必須逃離原本的住所,經過薛地的時候,卻看到當地的居民扶老攜幼,趕來要見他一面,一邊還彼此說著:”這就是當年減免稅賦、讓我們度過荒年的人啊!”

孟嘗君聽到了,感動幾乎要掉淚,轉身向還在身邊的馮煖說:”先生當年替我買的「義」,我今天終於看到了!”

參考資料:當過三年國文助教的記憶

 

孟嘗君,名田文(?-前279年),中國戰國四公子之一,齊國宗室大臣。其父靖郭君田嬰死後,田文繼位於薛城(今山東滕州東南),亦稱薛公,號「孟嘗君」,以廣招賓客,食客三千聞名。

出身

靖郭君田嬰齊威王的兒子、齊宣王的異母弟弟,曾於齊威王時擔任要職,於齊宣王時擔任宰相,封於薛,人稱薛公,權傾一時。

田文出生之日是五月初五,根據齊國的風俗,這天出生的小孩若身高高度至門楣,會剋死父母,其父靖郭君於是命令把他拋棄了;但孟嘗君的母親不忍心,於是暗中養他成人,還安排他認父。孟嘗君認父時說:「人命是由天命控制,還是由門楣控制呢?如果是由門楣控制,只要把門楣加高便行了。」

而後孟嘗君的進言頗有道理,所以靖郭君開始器重他,終於立他為薛太子

軼事

雞鳴狗盜[編輯]

秦昭襄王聽說田文賢能,把他請到秦國,本想讓他做相,但又擔心他優先為齊國考慮,於是想殺他。田文找秦昭襄王寵妾求情,寵妾要他的白狐毛皮袍子,但這件袍子已送了給秦昭王,幸好門客中有人到秦王處把袍子偷了出來,於是寵妾向秦昭王求情,把田文放了。但不久,秦昭王後悔了,派兵去追,田文去到關口,關口規定要日出才開門,由於時辰未到不肯開關。幸好門客中有人會裝雞鳴,帶領其他雞一起叫了起來。守關人以為天將亮,於是打開關口,田文一行人便乘機出關。到了趙國,趙國人取笑他矮小,田文大怒,殺了一縣的人才離去。回到齊國,成為齊相。後來齊湣王滅了宋國,十分驕橫,要殺田文,於是田文逃到魏國為相,聯合燕國趙國魏國楚國秦國幾乎滅了齊國。

田文雞鳴狗盜的故事,《史記》指是齊湣王二十五年,《資治通鑒》指是公元前298年,齊湣王三年。

狡兔三窟

田文在,有門客三千,其中一客非常特別,此人是馮驩(或作馮諼)。

馮驩拜託別人向孟嘗君推薦自己,以成為孟嘗君的門客。孟嘗君問推薦人:「馮驩有何嗜好?」對曰:「沒有嗜好。」再問:「馮驩有何技能?」對曰:「沒有技能。」但是孟嘗君還是接納了馮驩。

起初,孟嘗君的部下以為馮驩是個要飯的,於是給他很差的飲食。不久,馮驩倚柱彈著劍:「長劍啊!我們回家吧!這裡沒有魚可吃!」部下告訴孟嘗君,孟嘗君下令以馮驩同其他門下有魚可食之客。過不久,馮驩倚柱彈著劍:「長劍啊!我們回家吧!出門沒有車!」部下都在笑他,又告訴孟嘗君,孟嘗君下令以馮驩同其他門下有車可乘之客。又過了不久,馮驩倚柱彈著劍:「長劍啊!我們回家吧!這裡無法養家活口!」部下 都以馮驩貪心不足,非常討厭他。孟嘗君問馮驩:「馮先生有親人嗎?」對曰:「家有老母!」孟嘗君派人供給馮驩的母親生活用品,於是馮驩不再彈劍。

某日,孟嘗君出布告,徵求可以替他至封邑薛城收債之人,馮驩自願前往。臨行前,馮驩問孟嘗君:「債收完了,要買甚麼東西回家呢?」孟嘗君回答:「看我家缺少甚麼就買甚麼罷!」於是馮驩去了地,債券合同對完之後,矯造孟嘗君的命令,把債券合同燒毀,人民高呼「萬歲!」馮驩趕回去,一早便求見,孟嘗君奇怪他怎麼那麼快回來,問曰:「您買了甚麼回來呢?」馮答曰:「我看您家中豐衣足食,犬馬美女皆有,所以我買了『義』回來。」問曰:「甚麼是買『義』呢?」回答:「您不照顧、疼愛人民,而加以高利,人民苦不堪言。我於是偽造了您的命令,燒毀了所有的借據,民眾都歡呼萬歲,這就是買『義』。」孟嘗君聽完之後很不高興,説:「好了,別再說了,先生請去休息吧!」

過了一年,齊湣王對孟嘗君說:「寡人不敢以先王之臣為臣!」於是削除孟嘗君的職位。孟嘗君回到封邑,人民「迎君道中」,孟嘗君才明白馮驩市義的用心。(這故事稱為焚券市義

馮驩之後又對孟嘗君說:「兔子狡猾而有三窟,現在只是逃過死路而已。現在主公已經有一窟,臣懇請主上再讓臣為您鑿另外二窟。」

孟嘗君給了馮驩車輛五十,青銅五百斤,向西去梁國魏國),對魏惠王說:「齊國罷黜了重臣孟嘗君而讓他回到封邑,諸國之中誰若先一步迎他入國便能強盛!」於是魏惠王空出了大位,派使臣攜帶車一百乗,青銅千斤,來往聘任。馮驩對孟嘗君說:「千金是相當貴重的利益,百乘是顯得使者目的的慎重,齊王這下一定會知道的!」秦國使者來求孟嘗君入國數次,孟嘗君都推辭不入秦。齊國朝臣聽見消息,朝野震撼,齊湣王寫了一封密函,派太傅攜帶佩劍和紋車二乘,前往謝罪,並請孟嘗君回來再當宰相。於是孟嘗君風風光光的回朝就任宰相(挾外援以再登相位)。

馮驩再對孟嘗君說:「請主公向大王請求,將齊國宗廟設立於薛,這樣可以保證主公的官位,便可以高枕無憂。」於是齊湣王將宗廟立於薛地(立宗廟於薛)。

孟嘗君在齊擔任相國數十年,沒有任何的大小災禍,都是出自於馮驩的計策和謀略。[1]

評價

王安石:「孟嘗君特雞鳴狗盜之雄耳,豈足以言得士!」[2]


 

Characters: Mr. Mong 孟嘗君 – Mong was a very well off gentleman that was famous for having a big compound that housing 3000 (!!) people who lived off him.  He provided food and housing to all these people because he was searching for talents to help him.  What a generous guy!

Characters: Fong 馮驩 – Fong was among one of many that came to live with Mr. Mong.

Fong wanted to come to the compound so he asked a friend to recommend him to Mr. Mong.  When they first met Mr. Mong asked Fong “Do you have any hobbies?”, Fong replied “no”.  Mr. Mong asked “Do you have any skills?”, Fong also replied “no”.  Initially Mr. Mong thought Fong was there just to take advantage of the situation.  But to Mr. Mong, feeding one more person is not a big deal so he accepted Fong anyway.

Back then everyone had a sword.  One day Fong was talking to his sword and said “Hey sword, let us go home.  There is no fish to eat here.”, Mr. Mong heard this, and started provide fish on the food menu.  A little while later Fong talked to his sword again and this time he said, “Hey sword, let us go home.  We don’t have a horse carriage to ride here.”, Mr. Mong heard this, and started providing horse carriage access to Fong.  By now many of Mr. Mong staff start to think Fong is too greedy and they start to dislike him.  A while later, Fong once again said to his sword “Hey sword, let us go home.  It’s not possible to make a living here to support the family.”, now all the staff are outraged thinking wow this Fong guy comes to eat and live at the compound but he doesn’t do anything.  Mr. Mong asked Fong, “Do you have any blood relatives to support?”, Fong replied “my old mother.”, Mr. Mong made sure Fong’s mom is well taken care of.  From then on, Fong never talked to his sword again.

One year, Mr. Mong needed to send someone to his hometown to collect rent from the farmers who rented land from Mr. Mong.  Fong volunteered to go.  Fong asked Mr. Mong if he should bring back anything from the trip.  Mr. Mong said just get whatever you think we need at the house.

Shortly after Fong came back rather quickly.  Normally it takes a while to collect all the rent.  Fong was back very fast so Mr. Mong asked what did he buy to bring back?  Fong replied well sir I see you have plenty of properties, lots of pretty girls to serve you and the only thing you were missing was righteousness.  It has been a very tough year to grow crops due to drought.  So I told the farmers you knew of this and said no rent this year.  I’ve bought you righteousness with the rent money.  Mr. Mong was a bit upset and said, okay you can go rest now.

Mr. Mong held a key position in a country but some people were jealous of him and set him up to fail.  He was told to go into early retirement by the King.  So Mr. Mong took all the crew and moved back home…  when he arrived he received an extremely warm welcome because all the farmers greatly appreciate the rent free year.  Mr. Mong now finally learn what Fong meant when he said he bought righteousness.  🙂

This was one of my favorite stories from history.

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About GhettoRacer

racer, driver coach, taoist, yogi, dreamweaver, bballer, rebel, philosopher, entrepreneur, kiva, lonewolf, vagabond, photo/video shooter, storyteller
This entry was posted in Chinese, Chinese stories/history, Cool story, Bro!, East/West/translations, 高價值優秀文章, Good Guys List - my heros & inspirations, Politics/Societies/World stuff, PSA - public service announcements, Retrospective, The Truth, The Realist, Uncategorized/Unsorted and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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