Millennium Charm is a book site on the life story of Su Shih and not really a blog. (Daily Living Charm is the blog to expand on Su Shih’s charm of living freely in conflicts and loss in modern life).It was meant to be like a case study in real life to illustrate Chuang Tzu’s teachings, it helped me tremendously to make sense out of my own issues of conflicts, love and loss and migrant mentality whether at home or abroad.
Due to my inadequate knowledge of blogging and social media or lack of interests in Su Shih who is the symbol of Chinese culture, the time and efforts I spent on sharing in writing what I learnt from Chuang Tzu or Su Shih have not been very effective in achieving my goals of promoting peace for others and doing good. Su Shih is a very popular poet and icon in the Chinese world past and present, but personally I am more interested in the issues of his life in particular how he integrated Confucianism, Taoisim and Buddhism that formulate Chinese mentality today.Su has thousands of poems but I have already translated and posted those I am most interested in but that is not really not my main objective.
It is time for me to move on to endeavors on peace and doing good in different directions and stop blogging for the time being or until more competence on blogging and social media is acquired as well as a more compelling purpose for posting is found.For more explanation please read last post on Daily Living Charm.There are many posts that were written and posted in private before the launch of this book site. (Maybe due to my misconception, many have not been viewed.) For those interested in poetry, you might enjoy those posts categorized or tagged poetry or quotes. There are many webpages about the colorful and multifacet life of Su Shih and Chinese culture, may I invite you to surf the book site or buy Millennium Charm ebook at Amazon as donations to the French father’s nursing home for the mentally challenged.
Thank you all for your visits, likes and follows and the learning from your blogs that I follow and will continue to read as time permits. May you all be free in conflicts and loss or moving around in the world and leave a legacy of millennium charm in your world!
“Spring lands on secluded valley of gurgling water,
bright plum blossoms in grass and bramble.
A night of east wind, the rock cracked,
crossing the treacherous mountain in falling snow.”
“Green branches sculpted with jade
and pistils with gold,
fairy flesh fearless of bitter cold.”
Red Plum Blossoms
Fear of sorrow, crave for sleep, it alone blooms late.
Tardy for concerns of icy look, not fitting for the season.
Feigning in pastel pink of peach and apricot,
yet lean, arrogant air of frosty snow remains.
Resilient nature to cold would not yield to spring air,
Blushing from wine in jade flesh for no cause.
The poet elder does not get plum’s character,
can only tell plum from peach with leaves and branches.
“Cold resilient plum blossoms appear to avoid spring,
they don’t understand Creator’s impartial love.”
Morning Cloud was the name of a fairy who had an affair with a lord and has the connotation of love-making. Su Shih‘s adored concubine named Morning Cloud was an orphan growing up in a pleasure house as an entertainer playing Pipa, dancing and serving tea. She was only twelve when they first met and became his concubine at fourteen.
The photo of the statue was taken at her grave in Huizhou or Su’s wild south. The second portrait shows a contemporary painting of her with a Pipa, but she was called “blue little sleeves” in many poems of Su and his friends because she always dressed in turquoise.
The romance between Su and Cloud is well loved by the Chinese speaking world globally. Su had a baby with Cloud but he died as an infant.See most touching poem on love and loss. She found solace in Buddhism and the couple were best spiritual companion to each other.
In the exile at Huizhou Su started calling Cloud the Celestial Maiden and himself Vimalakirta, an Indian lay practitioner who was highly cultivated. His sutra was renowned with Celestial Maiden’s spiritual petals scattered on disciples to ascertain their practice on nonduality. Petals fell off clothes of those who practiced well but clung on those with dualistic thoughts. She asked the disciples,
“Why are you brushing off petals?”
One said, “It’s not in line with Buddha’s teaching.”
“It is not the petals, but the individual’s dualistic thinking that is not aligned with the teaching. It is like fear. If you love life and fear death, senses of sight, hearing, smell and taste can deceive you; the enlightened stands above all senses.”
See below the pagoda named “Six Metaphors” after the last lines Morning Cloud recited from the Diamond Sutra at her death.
“All laws of actions are
like dream, mirage, bubble and shadow
as dew and lightning.
It should be observed as such.”
You can see her grave right behind the Pagoda and there are statues of Morning Cloud and Su on site.