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明朝那些事儿 Stories about Ming Dynasty

最近我在读一本书《明朝那些事儿》,作者用丰富幽默的语言讲述了明朝的历史,而朝嘉靖年间的几位大臣最使我印象深刻。

陆炳,锦衣卫指挥官。自幼接受了严格的教育,忠奸善恶,是非分明。他上位做的第一件事就是平反冤狱,在别人都不愿意多呆的诏狱里耐心倾听犯人称述冤情,然后一一记录下来。冤情就此大白。他会接济正直的大臣、救济穷人,在皇上要处罚别人时站出来说公道话。但就是这样一个人,在利益面前却没有坚守自己的原则。早在进入官场后不久,他便按照最原始的准则判断:夏言为忠,严嵩为奸。但是因为私利,他不惜与严嵩合谋,害死夏言。

都说严嵩残害忠良、贪赃枉法、无恶不作,可是严嵩也曾有自己的志向。年轻的严嵩在母亲去世后,辞官守孝。三年守制期过了仍拒不入朝,只因一个理由:“奸臣当道,再下不堪与之为伍!”那时的严嵩有自己的骨气,宁可不做官也不愿与小人同流合污。但是后来,为了升官,他丢弃了自己的良心,开始逢迎皇帝,阿谀奉承。直至最后沦为彻彻底底的奸臣。

陆炳想做一个正直善良的人,这一点是毋庸置疑的,就连大奸臣严嵩也曾有过不与邪恶同流合污的骨气。但是光有正直善良的心是不够的,如果没有坚持正义的毅力和勇气,在面对权利、金钱的诱惑,甚至来自外界的压力时,只会妥协。那时所有原则都化为泡影,而眼前此时此刻的利益才是最重要的。一次妥协,会导致不断的堕落,最后就会变成一个彻彻底底的坏人。


Recently I was reading a book "Stories about Ming Dynasty". The author told the history of the Ming Dynasty in rich and humorous language, and I was most impressed by the ministers during the Jiajing period of the dynasty.

Lu Bing, commander of Jinyiwei. He has received strict education since he was a child, and he is loyal, evil, good and evil, right and wrong. The first thing he did when he was in office was to vindicate the wronged prison. He patiently listened to the prisoners' grievances in the prison where no one else wanted to stay longer, and then recorded them one by one. The grievances are cleared up. He will help upright ministers, help the poor, and stand up and speak out when the emperor wants to punish others. But it was such a person who did not stick to his principles in the face of interests. Not long after entering the officialdom, he judged according to the most primitive criteria: Xia Yan is loyal and Yan Song is traitor. But because of self-interest, he did not hesitate to conspire with Yan Song to kill Xia Yan.

It is said that Yan Song persecutes Zhongliang, takes money and perverts the law, and does all kinds of evil, but Yan Song also had his own ambitions. After the death of his mother, the young Yan Song resigned from office and kept his filial piety. After the three-year rule period, he still refused to enter the court because of one reason: "A treacherous official is in power, and it is unbearable to be with him!" At that time, Yan Song had his own backbone, and he would rather not be an official than join forces with villains. But later, in order to get promoted, he abandoned his conscience and began to flatter the emperor and flatter him. Until finally reduced to a complete traitor.

There is no doubt that Lu Bing wants to be an upright and kind person. Even Yan Song, the treacherous minister, once had the backbone not to collude with evil. But it is not enough to have an honest and kind heart. If one does not have the perseverance and courage to uphold justice, one will only compromise when faced with the temptation of power, money, or even external pressure. At that time, all principles come to naught, and the interests at this moment are the most important. A compromise will lead to continuous depravity, and finally he will become a completely bad person.

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