Thursday, June 30, 2011

孟母搬家的故事 The Moving Story of Mencius' Mother

Don't you think Mencius' mother is a real FengShui master? Since children's education is traditionally the number one issue of priority in a Chinese family, it's not uncommon to find parents quitting their old jobs and trying to find new jobs in a new place in order to send their children to a better school. It's a  hard decision for a modern family. It's much harder for a single mother in the past, whose only means of making a living was to do laundry and sewing for others.  Mencius' father died when Mencius was only three.

This story has such an influence on Chinese parents nowadays that the condos within the best school
district are speculated to be the most expensive in the market, say 3 times higher in price than the condos of the similar size and quality. A 3-bedroom condo can cost as much as $800000(RMB¥5 million) in Hangzhou, the city I'm from.


Mencius (372BC~289BC) is considered to be the most important confucian after Confucius. He inherited the Confucius' theory,  and developed it greatly, and was called "Sub- Saint" ,as Confucius was regarded as the Saint.

孟子是中国历史上影响最大的思想家之一。 他很小的时候,父亲就去世了,孟子是他的母亲带大的。孟子的家附近是一块墓地, 他经常去那儿玩,和邻居的小孩一起学着大人跪拜、哭嚎的样子。孟子的母亲看见了就说: “这地方对小孩不好。”所以她就把家搬到别的地方去了。新家在一个市场旁边,孟子常常去市场玩, 学商人做生意,杀猪卖肉的样子。他的母亲知道了皱皱眉头说: “这地方对小孩也不好。” 就把家搬到了一个学校旁边。孟子看到学校里的学生都念书, 也跟着念书。 孟子的母亲满意地笑着说: "这才是小孩子应该住的地方。“ 所以, 孟子的母亲跟孟子就在那儿住下来了。孟子后来成了一个很有学问的人。

meng4zi3  shi4  zhong1guo2  li4shi3shang4  yin3xiang3  zui4da4de si1xiang3jia1  zhi1yi1. ta1  hen3xiao3 deshi2hou,  fu4qin  jiu4 qu4shi4le. meng4zi3  shi4  ta1de mu3qin1 dai4da4de.   meng4zi3 de jia4  fu4jin4  shi4  yi2kuai4  mu4di4,  ta1 jing1chang2  qu4 na4er  wan2,  he2  ling2ju1de  xiao3hai2  yi1qi3   xue2zhe   da4ren2    gui4bai4 ,     ku1hao2 de   yang4zi. meng4zi2de  mu3qin1  kan4jian4le  jiu4shuo1: "zhe4 di4fang  dui4  xiao3hai2  bu4hao3."  suo3yi3  ta1 jiu4  ba3 jia1  ban1dao4  bie2de di4fang1 qu4le.  xin1jia1  zai4  yi2ge4  shi4chang3  pang2bian1,  meng4zi3  chang2chang2  qu4  shi4chang3  wan2. xue2   shang1ren2   zuo4sheng1yi4,   sha1zhu1   mai4rou4  de   yang4zi .  ta1de  mu3qin1  zhi1dao4le    zhou4zhou4mei2tou2  shuo1: "zhe4  di4fang  dui4  xiao3hai2  bu4hao3."    jiu4  ba3  jia1  ban1dao4le  yi2ge4  xue2xiao4  pang2bian1.  meng4zi3  kan4dao4 xue2xiao4li3de  xue2sheng1  dou1  nian4shu1,  ye3 gen1zhe nian4shu1.  meng4zi3de  mu3qin1  man3yi4de   xiao4zhe  shuo1: "zhe4  cai2shi4  xiao3hai2zi  ying1gai1  zhu4de  di4fang."  suo3yi3,  meng4zi3  de mu3qin1 gen1  meng4zi3  jiu4zai4  na4er  zhu4xia4lai2le.  meng4zi3  hou4lai2  cheng2le  yi2ge4  hen3you3  xue2wen4 de ren2.


Translation:


Mencius is one of the most influential philosophers in the Chinese history. When he was very young, his father passed away. Mencius was brought up by his mother. There was a cemetery near their house. Mencius  often went there to play. He and children in the neighborhood copied the adults' way of worshipping and crying. When his mother saw this, she said:"this place is not good to kids." Hence, she moved their home to another place. Their new home is close to a market, where Mencius often went to play. He copied the way the sellers doing their business, butchering pigs and selling the pork.  When his mother learned about this,  she said again: " This place is also no good for kids." So she moved to the side of a school. When Mencius saw the students reading at the school, he also read following their example. His mother smiled with satisfaction and said: " now this is  the place where kids should live." Therefore, Mencius and his mother stayed there.  Later Mencius became a very knowledgeable man.

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