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【轉貼】英譯佛教故事─悲願
四十八個小時,
讓我從一個天真無憂的少年變成身負重任的青年…
我可以用各種不同的方式,貢獻心力,
讓我週周遭的人更幸福、更快樂
我不但能渡過將來所有的難關,
也能順利突破個人成長轉化的最後關卡…

作者簡介 : 此文原刊登於美國雜誌《人生的轉變》「PersonaI Transformation」1997年第廿九刊期 24-26 頁,作者智輝當時年17歲,目前就讀於 Johns Hopkins 大學二年級。本刊徵得同意轉載。

The author of this article was 17 at the time and is now a sophomore with Johns Hopkins University, This article was published by Personal Transformation, NO, 29, pp.24-26, 1997, and is being reprinted here with permission.

阿彌陀佛!阿彌陀佛!莊嚴的誦經聲響徹病房,瀰漫整個醫院,單調的唸誦稍稍解我心中沉重的哀痛,帶來新的平靜與安慰。我提醒自己,這不是悲傷、激動的時刻,接下來的四十八小時,還有千頭萬緒要處理。

"A-mi-to-fo, A-mi-to-fo…" The Chanting of this sacred Buddhist mantra filled the hospital room permeated though the entire ward. The monotonous chanting relieved somewhat the unbearable sadness that weighed on me and replaced it with a new surge of peace and solace. I reminded myself that, in fact, this was no time for grief or for any other emotion. There was much to be done in the next forty-eight hours.

這四十八小時讓我從幼稚天真、無憂無慮的少年,蛻變成為一身負重任的青 年。那天稍早,母親走入病房,請我同意,讓父親走。「醫生已經盡了全力,他 受夠折磨了…」。她坦率的話語,一字字直刺入我心房,我口裡答應著:「好。」 兩眼淚水泉湧。當時我真想,即使到現在我還是想,用盡滿腔力氣,穿透時空,打破永恆,大叫:「不要!」然而從我靈魂深處傳來的,竟然只是疲累、喑啞的「好。」爸,您一定知道,我心中一直在求您諒解,求您原諒我這麼輕易就讓您走;您一定知道,我從來沒有,也絕對不會放棄您。我只是無法再看著您,忍受如此的折磨與痛苦。

八年來,您與致命的淋巴癌苦苦搏鬥,您是這麼堅毅不屈,您的健康一天天 惡化、衰退,卻磨不去您的堅忍耐力。回憶過往,這段時間只有讓我們彼此更親 近、更珍惜地走過許多難忘的時光。我常想,今天如果情況不同,我們還會這麼 親近、這麼珍惜嗎?如果結果不同,我們的記憶還會如此鮮活、強烈嗎?您為各項慈善活動、有意羲的計劃付出無限的精力,不論是在泰國孤兒院,還是在高棉的難民營,您都是全力以赴,你的精力何來?只在一個星期以前,您鄭重地告訴我,一定要在醫院裡撐過下個禮拜,您回家以後,我們要一起去找一輛新車,沒想到最後一個星期的另一場戰鬥,卻奪走了您的性命。一次又一次的化學治療,讓您的身體充滿毒素,讓您的身體一天天衰弱,您必須再忍受一次骨髓移植手術。我現在知道,您當時就知道,早在最終一刻來臨以前,您就已經知道,一切都已無可挽回,您的眼睛清楚地向我訴說,然而我還是要看著您經歷好幾次的心搏停止,斷續相連的昏迷,七孔大量流血,才能讓事實沉入心底…

The next forty-eight hours saw my final transformation from a naive and carefree adolescent to becoming a young man with responsibility. Earlier that day my Mom had walked into the same hospital room and asked for my consent to let Dad pass on. "The doctors had done everything they can. He is suffering too much……"

The directness of her words and the bluntness of her message pierced through my heart. Tears still come to my eyes when I recall my answering "Yes". I wanted then and, I still do, to scream with the full blast of my lungs to echo "NO-OO" through space and eternity but, instead, what came out of the deepest recess of my soul was simply a tired and mute "Yes"…Dad, you must now that in my heart I still seek for your understanding and forgiveness for my letting you go this easily.

You must know that I have never and will never give up on you. What I could no longer stand was to witness you suffer the way you did. For eight years you have fought this deadly disease that they call lymphoma and yet you have always persevered and stood on your ground. Your health deteriorated over the year but it never took away your stamina. In fact, looking back, it only brought us closer together.

So many moments cherished and lived together-would we, no, could we have done so otherwise? Would they have had the same freshness and intensity that they have for all of us now had your outcome be different? And all that boundless energy you devoted to so many charities and meaningful projects, from working with orphanages in Thailand to refugee camps in Cambodia, where did it all come form? Just a week earlier you announced to me that you would make it through the next week at the Hospital and, upon your return, we would look for a new car together.

The final week took you, Dad, through yet another battle. After multiple rounds of chemo, with your body debilitated by poison, you had to endure another bone marrow transplant. I know now that you knew then, even before the final moments, that it was all over. I could see that through your eyes. And yet it still had to take several cardiac arrests, intermittent coma, and profuse bleeding from every orifice of your body to have this reality sink into my heart……

我必須一再提醒自己,我沒有時間傷痛。我們圍繞在父親身旁,雙手合十心連心地不斷唸誦著佛號,更清楚地意識到這分離時刻的神聖。當天下午一點七分,在關掉呼吸器後,父親踏上了往生的路程。我提醒著自己,要專心協助清洗父親的遺體,並為他更衣。按照佛家傳統,我們必須仔細為亡者打點,送他們上路。我記得自己強忍淚水,避免玷污父親遺體及剛換上的新衣,畢竟根據佛陀教誨,為死者哀傷不僅全無必要,甚且會阻礙亡靈作最後階段的轉化。爸爸啊!您一定知道,儘管這所有的教誨,其實我只想撕下這平靜的假面具,不顧一切的趴在您身上號淘大哭,您一定知道的,對不對?

我的心已經為悲傷淹沒,為什麼還要顧全表面的禮節?生命難道就不能暫時赤裸裸地呈現,管它什麼規矩?管它什麼戒條?就是這樣,活著不就是這樣,還有什麼其他的呢?我知道,爸爸,您也曾極力安慰我,跟我說 :「孩子!你應該為我高興,不要為我悲傷!我現在是要回歸到生命的本體。你應為我感到高興,因為我的生命過得很充實;我有美滿的家庭,我也努力行善,我這一生沒有白白虛度。我們每一個人終歸都要回到光環中,只是時間遲早而已,不要為生命的無常而哀傷!」也許我還沒有修到這麼高的境界,可是爸爸請您聽著,我答應您,我一定會努力的!只是現在,我無法控制,完全跌入痛苦絕望的深淵,此後一生中,再沒有你在身旁叮嚀、指導,您叫我情何以堪………

I had to remind myself again that I did not have time for digressions. We stayed in a circle around Dad, with palms joined, never breaking the chant that united our hearts and made all of us even more acutely aware of the sacredness of that departing moment. At precisely 1:07 P.M. that day, with the respirator turned off, Dad moved on. I reminded myself to stay focused on helping clean Dad and change his clothes. According to Buddhist tradition we had to prepare the deceased properly for the journey beyond. I remember fighting back tears so that they would not stain Dad or his new clothes.

After all, mourning for the deceased was not only unnecessary, according to Buddhist teachings, but it would actually hamper the soul or vital force from making its final transition… Dad, in spite of all these teachings, you know that all I wanted to do was to tear the mask down and sob over you, with complete abandon, don't you? Why should I still care about protocols when my heart is really flooded with sorrow? Can't life for a moment be just the way it is, free of constraints and man-made rules? Just be… by being we live, and nothing else? I know, Dad. You did try to console me by saying, "Look, son, you should rejoice and not mourn for me now that I'm returning to the essence of my being.

You should rejoice that I have lived a full life, had a wonderful family, done some good deeds, and that this lifetime was not wasted in vain. Sooner or later each one of us will return to this circle of light. It's only an issue of time. Don't mourn over the impermanence of life." Perhaps I have not evolved this far, Dad, but listen, I promise I'11 try. For the moment, I simply cannot help but feel a profound sense of despair. The burden of facing the rest of our lives without your presence and guidance is simply unbearable.

我終於強打精神,來面對一項項陸續舉行的儀式,從醫院就開始唸誦的佛 號,一直沒斷,在親友輪番守夜下,持續唸了幾天幾夜。我身為長子,必須招呼 來瞻仰遺容、參加喪禮的每一位賓客。父親遺體是火化,我很難形容最後放手的 那一時刻,眾多親友的支持是母親和我最大的慰藉,他們陪我們度過這慘痛變故的最後時光,日夜輪流陪著我們,一直到所有儀式結束。如果沒有他們溫婉的言語和鼓勵,我相信我是無法走過這悲慟的巨大失落。回顧當時,整個禮拜的儀式,由醫院病房開始,不僅莊嚴而且美得難以形容,我偶然聽到護士、醫生及許多關心的朋友在探詢儀式的意義,有一個人甚至表示:「將來輪到我的時候,我也要用這種方式。」現在我覺得寂寞,或是想念父親的時候,仍然時常唸誦著佛號。阿彌陀佛是無量光明佛,會在人往生時,受人祈請前來接引 ; 祂也代表無上智慧與開悟成道,誦唸阿彌陀佛佛號,也就是提醒我,不要失去人生這崇高偉大的目標。

I did bring myself together to confront the subsequent rituals that took place. The chant that started in the hospital never broke, continuing for several days with relatives and friends taking vigil. As the oldest son, I was obliged to greet every guest that came for Dad's viewing and the whole funeral service. Dad was cremated and I find hard to describe here that final let go of him. Of consolation to Mom and I was the support of so many friends and relatives who came at the final moments of this tragedy and took turns to stay with us through the days and nights until the ritual was completed.

Without their words of kindness and inspiration, I do not believe I could have survived this loss. Actually, looking back, the whole week long ritual, starting at the hospital room, was solemn but also indescribably beautiful. I overheard nurses, doctors and many concerned friends asking about the meaning of the ritual and one even commented "When my time comes, I want to die this way." I still repeat the chant from time to time when I feel lonely or when I think of Dad. A-mi-to-fo, or Amitabha really, stands for the Buddha of Infinite Light and as such is evoked when one passes on. However, it also stands for Infinite Wisdom and Enlightenment, and its chanting serves as a reminder for me to never lose sight of this greater purpose of living.

人生的一大諷刺是,人常要在發生重大變故之後,才能夠對現實真相或命運有全新的領悟與認識。大半的人都是渾渾噩噩過一生,埋葬、蟄伏在自我裡面。我由於個人的慘痛經驗,才下定前所未有的最大決心,要努力實踐,完成人生的使命。今年的三月十二日,我體內的一部分已經隨著父親過世而死去,但卻又重生為更有意羲的大「我」。我會努力用功成為執壺的醫師,這是我在父親過世前,對他許下的諾言。與家人共同渡過的這段珍貴經驗,讓我更深刻地瞭解,對於苦難中的病患及其親友,除了給予專業的實質醫療照顧,更重要的是給予精神上的鼓勵與支持。我堅決相信,一個好的醫師不僅要治療身體,更要治療心靈,身與心其實是 一體兩面,相輔相成。

追求這項目標的強烈意願在我體內燃燒,使我的決心堅定不移,如此我必定能夠完成,在父親病塌旁,以及後來每一個日子裡暗暗立下的誓願,我發誓要無倦、謙卑地為所有人類同胞服務,我很清楚,只要珍惜生命中的每一刻,絕不浪費一分鐘,我就能夠充分實現生命,發揮最大的潛力。我所經歷過的深沉哀慟,也讓我能夠以悲憫的心來對待生命中較不幸的一群,回首過去,這種強烈的感受,我是絕對不可能體會的。今天我領悟到,我可以用各種不同的方式,貢獻心力,讓我週周遭的人更幸福、更快樂;我更領悟到,只要有一顆純潔、誠懇的心,這些都只不過是舉手之勞。我期望藉由對生命熱忱的分享,虔誠感謝我所擁有的一切,我不但能渡過將來所有的難關,也能順利突破個人成長轉化的最後關卡。

It's ironic how sometimes it takes a tragedy of catastrophic proportions to wake oneself up to a new sense of reality or destiny-most of us would otherwise simply move on in life, dormant, and buried within ourselves. As a result of my own personal tragedy, I have acquired a greater determination to succeed and to work hard for a purpose in life than I would ever have. A part of me died with my Dad that Tuesday, March 12 of this year, but it became reborn into a much greater and purposeful Self. I will study and work hard to become a physician, a promise I made to my Dad before he passed on.

Going through all this precious experience with my family only helped reinforce my understanding of how important it is to provide spiritual nurture and support to patients and their relatives in need, and not just professional, materialistic care. I'm strongly convinced that a good physician heals not only the body but also the soul. The two sides actually reinforce each other.

My intent to achieve this goal is so strong that it burns through my flesh and gives me all the resolve in the world for this pursuit. In this way I feel I can fulfill my pledge, made quietly beside at my Dad's bedside and everyday ever since, to always serve tirelessly and humbly my fellow mankind. I know that, only by cherishing each moment of my life, without a minute to waste, will I be able to live my life fully and to its utmost potential.

The experience of profound sorrow that I went through also has given me a sense of compassion towards the less fortunate in life, a feeling so strong that, looking back, would not have been possible for me to grasp before. I realize today that in so many different ways, I can contribute to making the people around me happier and better. I also understand now that this path becomes effortless when one's heart is pure and sincere. I expect that by sharing a contagious enthusiasm for life while being grateful for what I already have, I will not only survive any hardships that may lie ahead but also prepare myself for that final breakthrough in my personal evolution.

而在我生命中的每一刻,父親,您永遠都會與我同在請您安息,阿彌陀佛!

…And through all these moments in my life, Dad, you will always be with me. Rest in peace. A-mi-to-fo…

摘自 美佛慧訊第五十七期
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2010/5/30 上午 01:05:54

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