THE DIARY OF ZENG WENGONG (EXCERPT)
For eons since the past until now, time has gone on
without end. During the several decades of a
human’s life, time passes in just an instant.
The lands on Earth extend across thousands of miles,
whose boundaries are undetectable. Living on it are
humans who sleep, live, roam about, and rest.
During the day, one person can only occupy one
room at a time, and at night, only one bed at a time.
Books from the past and writings by contemporary
people are as numerous as water in the ocean. That
which we can read over in our entire lives only
amount to one hair out of nine ox hides.
Things can occur in countless ways; put nicely,
people have endless options. However, what our
ability and power allows us to deal with is only a
grain of sand in an entire universe.
Upon knowing Heaven’s eternity, and how short our
life experiences can be, when faced with hardship
and adversity, it is best to be patient and wait it out.
Upon knowing the Earth’s vastness, and how small
the space we occupy, when faced with the contest
for fame and profit, it is best to defend our stance
by stepping aside.
Upon knowing the innumerability of books, and how
scant our knowledge is, we dare not rejoice over a
minor attainment. Instead, we choose what is good
and abide by it.
Upon knowing the countless matters in this world,
and how little we are able to achieve, we dare not
commend ourselves for our ultimately insignificant
accomplishments. Instead, we recommend those
who are capable and work together in achieving success.
By such, any selfishness or arrogance can be gradually eliminated.