【英文对照赏析】 贤淑无私的长孙皇后
2015-09-07
李世民牢牢地记住了贤妻的“居安思危”与“任贤纳谏”这两句话。当时天下已基本太平,很多武将渐渐开始疏于练武,唐太宗就时常在公务之暇,招集武官们演习射技,名为消遣,实际上是督促武官勤练武艺,并以演习成绩作为他们升迁及奖赏的重要参考。按历朝朝规,一般是除了皇宫守卫及个别功臣外其他人员不许带兵器上朝,以保证皇帝的安全,因此有人提醒唐太宗;“众人张弓挟箭在陛下座侧,万一有谁图谋不轨,伤害陛下,岂不是社稷之大难!”李世民却说:“朕以赤心待人,何必怀疑自己左右的人。”他任人唯贤、用人不疑的作风,深得手下文武诸臣的拥护,由此属下人人自励,不敢疏怠,就是在太平安定的时期也不放松警惕,国家长期兵精马壮,丝毫不怕有外来的侵犯。

关于任贤纳谏,唐太宗深受其益,他常对左右说:“人要看到自己的容貌,必须借助于明镜;君王要知道自己的过失,必须依靠直言的谏臣。”他手下的谏议大夫魏徵就是一个敢于犯颜直谏的耿介之士。魏徵常对唐太宗的一些不当的行为和政策,直接了当地当面指出,并力劝他改正,唐太宗对他颇为敬畏,常称他是“忠谏之臣。”但有时在一些小事上魏徵也不放过,让唐太宗常觉得面子上过不去。一次,唐太宗兴致突发,带了一大群护卫近臣,要到郊外狩猎。正待出宫门时,迎面遇上了魏徵,魏徵问明了情况,当即对唐太宗进言道:“眼下时值仲春,万物萌生,禽兽哺幼,不宜狩猎,还请陛下返宫。”唐太宗坚持出游,魏徵却不肯妥协,站在路中坚决拦住唐太宗的去路。唐太宗怒不可遏,下马气冲冲地返回宫中。

唐太宗回宫见到了长孙皇后,犹自气愤填膺地说:“一定要杀掉魏徵这个老顽固,才能一泄我心头之恨!”长孙皇后问明了原由,也不说什么,只悄悄地回到内室穿戴上礼服,然后面容庄重地来到唐太宗面前,叩首即拜,口中直称:“恭祝陛下!”她这一举措弄得唐太宗满头雾水,吃惊地问:“何事如此慎重?”长孙皇后一本正经地回答:“妾闻主明才有臣直,今魏徵直,由此可见陛下明,妾故恭祝陛下。”唐太宗听了心中一怔,觉得皇后说的甚是在理,于是满天阴云随之而消,魏徵也就得以保住了他的地位和性命。由此可见,长孙皇后不但气度宽宏,而且还有过人的机智。

长孙皇后与唐太宗的长子李承干自幼便被立为太子,由他的乳母遂安夫人总管太子东宫的日常用度。当时宫中实行节俭开支的制度,太子宫中也不例外,费用十分紧凑。遂安夫人时常在长孙皇后面前嘀咕,说什么“太子贵为未来君王,理应受天下之供养,然而现在用度捉襟见肘,一应器物都很寒酸。”因而屡次要求增加费用。但长孙皇后并不因为是自己的爱子就网开一面,她说:“身为储君,来日方长,所患者德不立而名不扬,何患器物之短缺与用度之不足啊!”她的公正与明智,深得宫中各类人物的敬佩,谁都愿意听从她的安排。

长孙无忌是长孙皇后的哥哥,文武双全,早年即与李世民是至交,并辅佐李世民赢取天下,立下了卓越功勋,本应位居高官,但因为他的皇后妹妹,反而处处避嫌,以免给别人留下话柄。唐太宗原想让长孙无忌担任宰相,长孙皇后却奏称:“妾既然已托身皇宫,位极至尊,实在不愿意兄弟再布列朝廷,以成一家之像,汉代吕后之行可作前车之鉴。万望圣明,不要以妾兄为宰相!”唐太宗不想听从,他觉得让长孙无忌任宰相凭的是他的功勋与才干,完全可以“任人不避亲疏,唯才是用”。而长孙无忌也很顾忌妹妹的关系。不愿意位极人臣。万不得已,唐太宗只好让他作开府仪同三司,位置清高而不实际掌管政事,长孙无忌仍要推辞,理由是“臣为外戚,任臣为高官,恐天下人说陛下为私。”唐太宗正色道:“朕为官择人。唯才是用,如果无才,虽亲不用,襄邑王神符是例子;如果有才,虽仇不避,魏徵是例子。今日之举,并非私亲也。”长孙无忌这才答应下来,这兄妹两人都是那种清廉无私的高洁之人。

The Virtuous and Selfless Empress Changsun

Li Shimin firmly remembered his wife words, "Think about danger when living in peace," and "recruit capable people who are open to different opinions." At that time the entire country lived in peace. Many military officials slacked off at practicing martial arts. During his spare time, Taizong would call those military officials to practice shooting technique. It seemed to be just for fun, but in fact it was a way for the military officers to practice their skills diligently. He used the results of the exercises as an important reference to promote and reward them. Under the rule of previous dynasties, only palace guards and very few special individuals were allowed to bring weapons into the palace. Someone thus reminded Taizong, "Those officers have their bows and arrows with them despite sitting near you. If someone plots or if there is a conspiracy to harm Your Majesty, that would be a disaster to the nation!" Li Shimin said, "I treat people forthrightly. I do not want suspect them." He appointed people based on their abilities, and entrusted them with heavy responsibilities. This was very much appreciated by his military and civil officers. This motivated the officers to be diligent and keep vigilant, even in peaceful times. The nation had strong soldiers and strong horses for a long time. They were not afraid of any external threat.

Regarding "recruiting capable people," Taizong also greatly benefited from that advice. He often said to his assistants, "For a man to see his face, he must use a mirror. For a King to know his own mistakes, he must use officers who can give honest criticisms." His top officer Wei Zheng was a very honest and straightforward man with great integrity. Wei Zheng was not reluctant to point out Tang Taizong's inappropriate behavior and policies, and urge him rectify them. Tang Taizong respected him very much, often calling him an "honest criticizing officer." But sometimes Wei Zheng would not ignore minor things, and Taizong sometimes felt offended. Once, Taizong felt like taking a large group of guards for hunting. When he was just about to leave the palace, he bumped into Wei Zheng. When Wei Zheng heard about his Emperor's foray, he immediately advised Taizong, "Now it is the second month of the spring, everything is sprouting, animals are nursing their young, so it is not a good time for hunting. Your Majesty, please return to the palace." Taizong insisted on hunting, Wei Zheng would not back off, and he stood in the middle of the road to block Taizong's way. Taizong was angry, so he got off the horse and returned to the palace.

When Taizong saw Empress Changsun, he angrily told her, "Sooner or later I will kill that old stubborn man!" The Empress was told the reason for the Emperor's anger. She did not say a word and left the room. When she returned, she was dressed in a formal dress and congratulated Emperor Taizong. Her act confused Taizong, so he asked, "What matter is so important?" She said, "I heard that an officer is willing to present his honest opinion only when the emperor is wise and open-minded. I would like to congratulate Your Majesty for having a cabinet member who is not afraid to contradict you, because it is a proof of Your Majesty's open-mindedness!" After hearing the Empress's words, Emperor Taizong felt the truth of it and calmed down. This indicates that Empress Changsun was not only very open and tolerant, but also held great wisdom.

Empress Changsun and Taizong's eldest son Li Chengqian was made crown prince at a very young age. Li Chengqian's nanny Madam Suian was in charge of controlling his daily expenses. At that time the palace was frugal, including the crown prince, whose purse strings were controlled tightly. Madam Suian often complained in front of Empress Changsun. She said, "The crown prince will be the future Emperor. His expenses should of course be paid for by the country. Now, his purse strings are kept so tight and everything around him is so shabby." She asked several times to increase his allowance, but Empress Changsun did not relax the rule just because he was her favorite son. Changsun said, "Being an Emperor, his future is before him. He should worry more about establishing his virtue and make a name for himself. He should not concern himself with his way of life and his expenses!" Her fairness and intelligence were well respected by many people in the palace.

Changsun Wuji was Empress Changsun's brother, and he was well versed in military and civil affairs. When he was young, he was already good friends with Li Shimin. He assisted Li Shimin in uniting the entire country and he was known for his great achievements. He should have ranked as a high level official. But, because his sister Changsun was Empress, he tried to avoid high positions at all times. Tang Taizong wanted Changsun Wuji to continue serving as the Prime Minister, but Empress Changsun said, "I am already Empress, one of the highest positions. I really do not want my brother to take a position in the cabinet.

Otherwise it would be like a family business. The behavior of Empress Lv of the Han Dynasty should be used as an example for making mistakes, and we should learn from others' mistakes." Tang Taizong did not want to accept her advice. He wanted to appoint Changsun Wuji because of his abilities and achievements. He felt that appointing people should be based on the talent solely, and relationships should not be counted. But Changsun Wuji also felt uneasy about his relationship with his sister, and did not want to be in a high ranking position. As a last resort, Taizong gave him a position that ranked high, but did not bring real political power. Changsun Wuji still did not want to accept it and argued, "I'm a relative of Your Majesty. If you appoint me as a high ranking official, I'm afraid people statewide would say that you are selfish." Tang Taizong said, "I appoint officials only based on abilities. If a person does not have abilities, even if he is my relative I won't appoint him. King of Xiangyi Shengfu is such an example. If he is capable, even if we were enemies I would use him, and Wei Zheng is such an example. Today's act is not because you are my relative." Changsun Wuji thus accepted it.
    来源: 看中国 责编: Lisa

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