道元《正法眼蔵》一段话释义

日本镰仓时代道元禅师(1200-1253)将曹洞宗禅法传入日本,成为日本曹洞宗始祖。他在《正法眼藏》中的一句话常被引用,圣严法师在《日本佛教史》中译为“生一时也,死亦一时也,亦如春而夏也,夏而秋也,秋而冬也”。前两句大致可解读为:生与死是各自独立的时段,并不在前后相续的一条时间线上。但“亦如春而夏也……”是什么意思?假如考虑文言中连词“而”的常用字义,后面几句意思似乎正好与前两句相反(生与死相继发生),甚至或许是在讲轮回?

好在道元的思想在西方流行,因此不难搜到英译,如Stephen Mitchell The Enlightened Mind (p.97)
Life is complete in itself; death is complete in itself. They are like the seasons. We don't call spring the future summer [疑为summer the future spring或spring the past of summer之误], or winter the past of spring.

显然,“春而夏也”的翻译与“我们不把夏天叫做未来的春天”的意思是非常不同的,后者正好是“生一时也,死亦一时也”的解说,可见圣严法师的翻译欠妥。英译应该大致不错,因为网上很容易搜到他人对这句话所作的类似的翻译,如:
You do not call winter the beginning of spring, nor summer the end of spring.

另外,道元绝无轮回思想。 The Enlightened Mind对《正法眼藏》中另一段的英译为:
Just as wood doesn't become wood again after it has turned into ashes, a person doesn't return to life after death. Thus it is taught in Buddhism that life doesn't become death. For this reason, life is called the Unborn. It is also taught that death doesn't become life. So death is called the Undying.

虽然生叫作Unborn、死叫作Undying不易理解,但生死轮回说在道元的思想中显然是不存在的。

增补

《正法眼藏》有何燕生汉译本,宗教文化出版社,2003。以下段落可能取自该书:
http://2013bell.blogspot.com/2013/11/1.html
(或http://pannazen.why3s.org/forum/index.php?showtopic=373 https://mercybuddha.pixnet.net/blog/post/27058936-梅庵正要向道元潑冷水了 )
如薪成灰,不重為薪.雖然如此,不應見取灰在後而薪在前.應知,薪住於薪之法位,雖云薪前灰後,卻是前後際斷.灰住灰之法位,雖云灰後薪先,亦是前後際斷.正如薪成灰之後,不在回頭成薪,人在死後不在回生.如此,不云生轉成死,乃是佛法定說,故曰『不生』.死不轉成生,即是法輪所定之佛轉,故曰『不滅』.生是一時之法位,死亦是一時之法位.例如春冬,不思冬轉成春,不云春轉成夏.

原日文(第二行为现代日语翻译):
http://www.dogen-shobogenzo.com/genjyokoan3.html
生も一時のくらゐなり、死も一時のくらゐなり。たとへば冬と春のごとし。冬の春となるとおもはず、春の夏となるといはぬなり。
生も一時の姿であり、死も一時の姿です。例えば、冬と春のようなものです。人は冬そのものが春になるとは思わないものであり、また春そのものが夏になるとは言わないものです。

英文翻译:
On the Spiritual Question as It Manifests Before Your Very Eyes (Genjō Kōan) (linked from thezensite.com)
we do not speak of life becoming death, which is why He spoke of things ‘not arising’. The Buddha also passed on through His turning of the Wheel of the Dharma that death does not become life, which is why He spoke of things ‘not perishing’. Life is the situation at one time, and death is the situation at another. For example, it is like winter and spring: do not imagine that winter ‘becomes’ spring, or speak of spring ‘becoming’ summer.

德文翻译:
Shôbôgenzô Gesamtausgabe by Dōgen,2008,p54
Leben und Tod haben ganze Existenz, wie die Beziehung zwischen Winter und Frühling. Denke jedoch nicht, dass der Winter sich in den Frühling wandelt oder der Frühling zum Sommer.

读了几十篇网文,感觉大陆读者多释读该段文字为生死如季节相续,有时再加生死如一,以解释日本武士视死如归,而其他语言甚至繁体字的网页则有完全不同的解读:生、死各有自己独立的“法位”(独立存在的意义),正如每个季节分别存在,不提它们之间的轮换。从以上(疑似)何燕生汉译文很容易看出,这种理解才是正确的。

2020年9月

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