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Luang Phor Pae – B.E. 2512 *******www.amuletstalismans**** This amulet was made by Luang Phor Pae, Wat PikulThong, Singburi, Thailand - one of the famous Thai monk. This is collectible thai amulet and everyone wear the amulet, is blessed. Having faith and making prayers will help to fulfill your wishes *******www.amuletstalismans****
11 Nov 2009
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*******SupremeMasterTV**** –Aulacese (Vietnamese) Classical Theatre: What Came From Heaven is Returned to Earth - P2/2 (In Aulacese). Episode: 1666, Air Date: 7 April 2011. Script Today’s Enlightening Entertainment will be presented in Aulacese (Vietnamese), with subtitles in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Mongolian, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, and Thai. The drum tempo varies between fast and slow, merging with singing voices which at times are elevated in pitch, other times deep and powerful. In brilliant costumes, lissome movements are in every gesture. Actors and actresses are differentiated by distinctive make-up, so that the audience can easily identify between the loyal and the obsequious, the noble ranks and humble subjects. This is hát bội (classical theatre), a performing art in Âu Lạc (Vietnam), originating from the common people and becoming more widespread among them in the 13th century under the Lý and the Trần dynasties. In the later Lê dynasty, classical theatre was introduced to the Court to entertain the royal family and mandarins. In the 19th century, Mr. Đào Tấn developed classical theatre and opened a performing school. He also built the first classical theatre in Bình Định province, central Âu Lạc. Since then, classical theatre has flourished in both artistic and literary aspects. Classical theatre operas are often based on historical references, highlighting moral values. Today, classical theatre is considered a traditional performing art of Âu Lạc. On Enlightening Entertainment, Supreme Master Television is pleased to introduce different forms of arts from Âu Lạc (Vietnam), as well as from other countries in the world, in order to share the beauty and cultures of the peoples on our planet. The classical theatre opera “What Came From Heaven is Returned to Earth” is based on an Aulacese folk tale about two sworn brothers Ngô Thiên and Lý Địa, illustrating that Heaven will reclaim whatever we don’t deserve. The story offers advice that humans honor their promise and relationship with one another, be it in times of poverty or wealth and glory. We now invite you to enjoy the conclusion of the classical theatre opera “What Came From Heaven is Returned to Earth” by playwright Nguyễn Diêu Trì, with performances by Nguyễn Diêu Trì as Ngô Thiên, Huỳnh Văn Tân as Lý Địa, Mỹ Dung as Fairy, Minh Liễu as Guard, Đạo An as Guard, Nguyễn Văn Thân as Elder Fairy, and other artists. Lý Địa and Ngô Thiên were two friends from the same village, who pledged their mutual loyalty in times of wealth as well as hardship. Lý Địa worked arduously to provide for Ngô Thiên’s schooling, in hopes that Ngô Thiên would achieve academic success and change their fates. After ten years of studying hard, Ngô Thiên graduated as First Laureate and was appointed as Province Chief. Delighted, Lý Địa went to meet Ngô Thiên, who disregarded his promise and denied acquaintance with such a poor man as Lý Địa. Thank you for your presence on Enlightening Entertainment. Words of Wisdom is coming up next. Please tune in on Supreme Master Television next Thursday for the Aulacese modern folk opera entitled “A Golden Lesson” by playwright Chơn Tâm Tịnh. Farewell for now. O God! I trusted someone’s vow and ended up so disappointed now. O brother Thiên! All my dreams have turned into smoke. What a harsh reality to wake up to from a fairy dream! Why is my life full of sorrow? O people, I’m deeply saddened by the situation. O people, misery keeps following me. I blame the dishonest person who changes his friends as he attains wealth, disregarding all past kindness he owed. In sadness, I fumble with each footstep. O God! I keep walking, forgetting that it’s dark already. Ahead are the deep forest and high mountains, without any sight of a house or passer-by. I’ll rest on this flat rock overnight. I’m a spiritual practitioner in Paradise. I’m called Thái Ất. I pity an honest person who has fallen victim to a cunning man. Injustice is felt by Heaven, thus I descend on Earth to help the one in misfortune. O Lý Địa! Wake up, son! In my sleep, I vaguely heard someone’s voice. Who are you? Are you the Head Fairy from Heaven or a ghost from the underworld? It’s me who called you. Wake up quickly, son, so that I can explain to you. Yes, yes. I’m Thái Ất the True Man (sage), who descends on Earth from the fairyland to help people. Where is your home? Why didn’t you go home to sleep but spend the night in the forest? Tell me what happened and I’ll help to fulfill your wishes. Since you asked, I’ll tell you everything. I’m from Đoài Village, and my name is Lý Địa. O Elder Fairy! I’m a poor man who makes a living by farming for hire. I and brother Ngô Thiên have sworn brotherhood, vowing to share in times of both wealth and hardship. I plowed and hoed for hire for 10 long years to earn money to provide for brother Thiên’s study. Now that brother Thiên has graduated as First Laureate, he changed his heart and disregarded his promise before. O Elder Fairy, I’ve just told you everything. How unjust the world is! O sir, why is it that the deceitful enjoys wealth while the honest is met with misfortune? O sir! Misfortune is reserved for the honest. The way of the world is bitter and ironic. Lý Địa, O son! Hearing what you said, I know that you’re a kind-hearted man. Your sincerity is witnessed by Heaven and Earth. From now on, I’ll help you with a boat, You’ll ferry people across the river every day to earn a living. Think no longer of what happened. As to Ngô Thiên, a deceitful man who disregards his friend’s kindness, will definitely reap what he sowed. It is said that “retribution can take place instantly.” O Elder Fairy, I’ll do as you said. From now on I’ll forget the past to take care of ferrying people across the river and wait for a brighter future. All right! Stay back on Earth, child. I’ll return to the fairyland. O Elder Fairy! Whether it rains or shines, I ferry passengers across the river daily. Though I’m not going to be rich, but it can afford me two meals a day. Since the Elder Fairy gave me a boat, I ferry the passengers across the river daily to earn my living. Though it’s less laborious than before, it’s still a hard life. Alas! It’s just my fate. I shouldn’t ponder about it. It’s getting dark. I’d better leave the pier to return to my straw hut and have a meager meal of musty rice. My life is like a boat rowing slowly on the river. Though people change their hearts and minds, I don’t hold a grudge or resent them. O boatman! Who is that? I’m a passenger. Please help ferry me. I can’t. It’s already dark. Besides, my boat is already half way to the other shore. Please go back; I’ll take you cross the river tomorrow. O boatman! Please come over to help ferry me because I have something very urgent. I’m afraid it’ll be too late tomorrow. All right! Let me turn the boat to help ferry you. I’m turning my boat to ferry a passenger, helping a person in need to cross the river. Greetings, Miss! Greetings, Mister! Please step down into the bamboo boat. Be careful not to fall. I’ll turn the boat back to row over the waves to take you across the river. This winter evening it’s turned windy, so a storm is also coming our way. Be careful not to fall into the river! (I know.) I firmly row on, unafraid of the storm. How lucky we are! The boat has just docked when the storm rises. O Miss! (Yes.) You should hurry home because it’s still a long way to walk. The rain is coming. O brother whatever-your-name-is! Địa. My name is Lý Địa. Brother Địa! What is it, Miss? There’s a saying, “Once you offer help, then help to the end. Once you start to cut, then cut smoothly.” The road to my home is still far, but the rain is here now. How about allowing me to spend the night here and I’ll set out tomorrow? No, that’s impossible. Is it all right, brother? That’s impossible, Miss. Why not? There isn’t any inn here. As a stranded traveler, where could a young woman turn to? Listen, Miss! (Yes.) It’s impossible because I’m a poor person and just have a thatched hut for my shelter. Besides... What is the problem, brother Địa? Besides, for a single man and a single woman to stay in the same room, I’m afraid... What are you afraid of? I’m afraid people may spread false rumors, Miss. Fine, then. If you’re afraid of rumors, I wouldn’t trouble you. I bow to you and take leave now, regardless of the raging storm. Goodbye! Wait! All right! I’ll let you spend the night in my place. Then head home quickly, I’ll follow you. Follow me to my thatched hut, because the rain is about to pour down. Let’s go, brother Địa. Let’s go. There, you see! My home is not only shabby, but also messy. It’s all right, brother Địa! Respected Miss! Please rest here. Brother Địa! I sleep here, how about you? Where are you going to sleep? You sleep here. I sleep over there. Besides, tomorrow is my father’s death anniversary. I have to get up early anyway to prepare a meager meal to pay tribute to my father’s spirit. Brother Địa! What is it, Miss? Let me ask you this. Are you married? O forget it, Miss. I’m dirt poor. I can’t even earn enough to feed myself, working endlessly, where do I get the money to take a wife? Brother Địa, let me tell you this. I see that you’re poor but honest and kind-hearted. What I meant is... What did you mean? I meant I want to be your wife. What do you think, brother Địa? Enough, Miss! You see that I’m a poor man, so you’re just teasing me. But how can that be possible between a man like me and a woman like you? Brother Địa! What did you mean by that? I meant you’re beautiful like a fairy descending on Earth and also elegant, while I’m ugly and poor. How can I be your match? Brother Địa, I’ve been testing your heart all this time. Now I tell you the truth. I’m a fairy from the fairyland. You’re from the fairyland? Yes. The Jade Emperor has found you to be an honest and kind man who has endured much suffering and hardship, so he had me come down on Earth to join an honest man in a harmonious marriage. O brother Địa, from this day on, I’ll be your gentle and faithful wife and keep you company. I’ll help you have a wealthy life to make up for your years of hardship. I vow to stay with you always in life and death. O God! Am I dreaming or is it a reality? It’s an astonishing sight in front of me! Is this the reality or a dream? This is the reality! What? This is reality! I thank God and Buddha for such blessing to the poor. I’m grateful to Heaven and Buddha for helping an honest person. O beloved Địa! You’ve suffered many years of hardship. O Địa! A kind-hearted man is now being rewarded. It’s true that “Heaven does not betray a good person. After miserable days comes a leisurely time.” O sweetheart, Heaven sends you to me. From now on, a bridge has been built by the crows, joining a couple in a harmonious marriage. O beloved Địa! In this world, wealth cannot be asked for. Remember that only those who lead a virtuous life are worthy to be human. I understand now. Beloved Địa! What is it, dear? You’re now a rich man. Tomorrow is our father’s death anniversary. The food I have prepared already. What we’re missing now is our relatives. Right now, you should go to brother Thiên and invite him to join us for a simple meal. Brother Thiên is still your sworn brother after all. All right, dear. If you think so, then I’ll go now. Please go, beloved Địa! I’m leaving now. But, wait! What is it, sweetheart? There’s something I must tell you. What is it? When you’re there, whatever condition brother Thiên asks for, just accept it. All right! Remember it, dear! Sir, a man named Lý Địa asks to see you. Guard! (Yes.) What did I tell you before? How come you still report to me such a thing? Your Honor, it was so before, but it is not so today. Guard. (Yes.) What are you beating around the bush for? What do you mean it was so, then it isn’t so? Your Honor, Lý Địa came here before, dressed in tattered clothes like a beggar. But today Lý Địa dons a brocade tunic and elegant trousers. He comes with a hammock and palanquin even. He appears to be very rich, Your Honor. Guard! (Yes.) Come here! (Yes, sir.) You said that Lý Địa today is not a poor man anymore? No, not anymore. Very rich! (He’s rich?) Yes, very rich! (Rich?) Brocade tunic, elegant trousers. Brocade tunic, elegant trousers? (Yes.) He comes in a palanquin as well? Yes. He appears to be very wealthy, sir. How strange! What did he do to become rich in just a year? Guard! (Yes.) Go to the front of the palace and let him in to see me. (Yes.) Lý Địa wishes to greet elder brother Ngô Thiên. Be at ease! Stand up, brother! Greetings, brother! Listen to my question: What makes you come here? Tell me quickly. Let me explain everything. Tell me! Today is my father’s death anniversary. It’s your father’s death anniversary? (Yes.) What for are you telling me? I come here to inform you about it. Respected brother, thanks to Heaven’s blessing, I’ve managed to earn some revenues and savings. Today is my father’s death anniversary. I invite you over for a simple feast with us. Regardless what happened, in the past we did vow brotherhood. I think of you as my blood brother, so I come here to invite you over to show my respect to my elder. That man! (Yes.) How ridiculous! You see a wealthy person, so you claim to be related to him, don’t you? Don’t dream about it! But, that’s all right. Listen to me. Since I’m free today and have nothing to do, if you want me to come to your home, then have a flowery mat line the road from my house to yours. The road must be covered with a flowery mat so that when I walk on it, the dirt won’t touch me. Can you do that? Just tell me. If you can do that, I’ll be so generous as to go over to join you for fun. All right! Everything is ready now. Please set out or else it’ll be late. I take leave now. Yes. You think I’m so dull-witted as to believe in what you said. Guard. (Yes.) Come in here. Yes, I’m here. Let me ask you: Whose mat spreads from my residence to the road? Your Honor, it is Mr. Địa’s mat that spreads from your palace to the road for you to go attend the party. Guard! (Yes.) You said the mat was spread by Địa’s servant? (Yes.) Really? Yes, really. All right! Prepare the palanquin for me to go attend the party. (Yes.) Please, sir! Guard. (Yes.) Listen here! (Yes.) This is Địa’s home. You two stay here and wait for me. (Yes.) It’s not often that you come to my home. My greetings, brother Thiên. Greetings, brother. Please come in. Come in, brother. Please have a seat. Have a seat. Your home looks so elegant. You’re rich, indeed... your whole family. Respected brother Thiên, you’ve come to my place today. Let me call my wife out to greet you in accordance of proper conduct. O Ngọc Nữ dear! (Yes.) Come out here, dear! (Yes.) O Ngọc Nữ! (Yes.) Brother Thiên has come to visit us. Come out and greet him, dear. (Yes.) I’m Ngọc Nữ, greeting brother Thiên. Be at ease! Greetings, sister. Ngọc Nữ dear! (Yes.) You’ve greeted brother Thiên already. I think, as a woman, you should go back behind the curtain to let me receive my guest. (Yes.) Wait! There’s no such restriction. Let her stand there for fun. Please have a seat, brother Thiên! Please! O Lý Địa! (Yes.) It’s not very often that we brothers meet to converse. Now that we meet here, I have this idea. I wonder if you’d agree with me. What is your idea? My idea is to take all my wealth and position as a province chief, as an exchange. Brother Thiên! What is it? You exchange your position as a mandarin with me, to get what? You asked me what I’d exchange for? Yes. I’ll exchange my position as a province chief and my wealth for your properties, and... And what, brother? And your wife, what else? Oh, no! Oh? What is it, brother? Respected brother, if you really want to exchange, I wholeheartedly agree to it. So you’ve agreed, right? Yes, but... (But what?) In the past, we also made a vow. It was just a plain promise witnessed by Heaven and Earth. Now, to have a real trust, a written pledge with our signatures is needed. You said that when you and I made a vow before, it was witnessed by Heaven and Earth. Exactly! Now, in order to make an exchange, paperwork is required, right? Exactly. All right! Bring a pen, inks lab, and paper here. I’ll write the details of the exchange. Here are the pen and inks lab. You can write and sign it. Watch carefully as I pen the details of this exchange. Write it! Listen here! I, Ngô Thiên, and Lý Địa are writing an exchange document. Listen, brother! Today, I, Ngô Thiên, write an exchange paper. I’m writing that: I’ll take my wealth and properties along with my position as the province chief to give to Lý Địa. In exchange, Lý Địa will give me his properties and his wife as well. I’ve completed it. It’s your turn to sign it. All right. Brother Thiên, the agreement has been prepared and signed with the exact terms. You keep one copy, and I keep one copy. This is the document of trust. O brother Địa! I’m here. The agreement has already been signed. Here is the royal court’s uniform, I’m handing it over to you now. All right, the signed agreement is very clear. Guards! (Yes.) Come out here. (Yes.) Get the palanquin ready to take me to the province palace. Please step on the palanquin, sir. Goodbye, brother Thiên. Goodbye. Ngọc Nữ, sweetheart! O God! How come it’s like this? Why? Where is this? Gilded mansion and luxurious palace are no longer! There’s only me, alone with the thatched hut. Ngọc Nữ! Where are you? Why doesn’t anyone answer me? Am I being punished by Heaven for being a betrayer? Alas! It’s a lesson for a betrayer. That’s it! That’s really it! How pitiful it is for me! It’s too late to repent. I’m an ungrateful person who disregards past kindness and affection. Heaven and Earth are very just, indeed! What I borrowed from Địa, I now have to return to him. Isn’t it so true that good or bad luck all comes from one’s heart? I’m an ungrateful person who disregards his promise. What I borrowed from Địa, I now must return to him. And what Ngô Thiên has here: a boat and a thatched hut. I’ll ferry passengers morning and evening. I can’t have what belongs to others. It’s seen today that what came from Thiên (Heaven) is returned to Địa (Earth). Due to the time limit of today’s program, please tune in next week for comments by artists who contributed to the classical theatre opera “What Came From Heaven is Returned to Earth.”
9 Jun 2011
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*******SupremeMasterTV**** – Aulacese (Vietnamese) Chèo Traditional Opera: A Hundred-section Bamboo Tree - P2/3 (In Aulacese). Episode: 1750, Air Date: 30 June 2011. Today’s Enlightening Entertainment will be presented in Aulacese (Vietnamese), with subtitles in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Mongolian, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, and Thai. Âu Lạc (Vietnam) is a nation that has a long-standing traditional culture. Aulacese music is very rich; since ancient times, there have been many musical instruments that move the soul with a wide variety of sounds like those of the copper drum, gong, lithophone, bamboo xylophone, cymbals and panpipe. In 2003, Elegant Music, a form of Huế royal music, was recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as an intangible cultural heritage of the world. Âu Lạc’s music represents the unique features of each region, for example, Quan Họ folksongs in the North, Huế tunes in the Central, and cải lương (modern folk opera) in the South. In addition, there are many other forms of music, including hò (work songs), lý (village songs), ceremonial songs, Aulacese classical opera, chèo traditional opera, Hồ Quảng opera, and so on. Indeed, music has been deeply instilled in the hearts of people in this beautiful country, and has been cultivated until this day. Northern Âu Lạc has a folk art called xẩm singing that is very popular in the northern plains and midland. This genre, in the old time, was performed by minstrel bands. In a gathering with a small group of our Association members some years past, Supreme Master Ching Hai was inspired to spontaneously compose and sing in the xẩm style a poem she had written in her late 20s in Germany. The poem was originally written in English which the poet herself translated into Aulacese. We now invite you to enjoy an excerpt of the xẩm singing “We Don't Live More Than One Hundred Years!” composed and sung by Supreme Master Ching Hai. I mean tonight I was nuts! But so what: Aren’t the rest of us!... Otherwise how could we carry on living, For life isn’t worth a thing!? You know that I am still in love with you! But that has nothing to do... I cannot please everybody, So I will please me! That doesn’t mean you are not right; We all have only one life! On Enlightening Entertainment, Supreme Master Television is pleased to introduce different forms of arts from Âu Lạc (Vietnam), as well as from other countries in the world, in order to share the beauty and cultures of the peoples on our planet. Chèo traditional opera is a folk theater art which originated from the regions near the mountains and from the plains of northern Âu Lạc. There are varied opinions about the beginning of chèo traditional opera: the earliest time is believed to be in 4th century BCE and the most recent is 14th century, at the end of the Trần dynasty. Chèo is a narrative genre of folk theater, recounting stories through a combination of music, singing and dance. One of the unique features of chèo is a skillful portrayal of subtle gestures and movements. During festivals, people in the plains of northern Âu Lạc often look forward to watching chèo traditional opera. The lyrics are infused with folk poetry and proverbs; tragedies are usually counter-balanced with satires. Chèo is replete with the pure simplicity of the common folk, yet equally profound in meaning. The chèo traditional opera “A Hundred-section Bamboo Tree” is based on an Aulacese legend about an orphaned young man who was very honest and hard-working. He took shelter under a bamboo tree since childhood, thus he was called Trúc, meaning bamboo. Trúc was in love with Mai, the daughter of a wealthy landowner. Neither hesitating to move mountains to fill up the sea nor betraying poor friends for wealth, a love in the fashion of Trúc and Mai has become a subject for poetry and prose to imply absolute faithfulness. The story not only praises human love but also exalts the quiet blessing of nature toward humankind, as symbolized in the affection and protection of the bamboo tree toward gentle Trúc. We now invite you to enjoy part 2 of the chèo traditional opera “A Hundred-section Bamboo Tree,” written by playwright Phan Tất Quang, with performances by Mạnh Huấn as Trúc, Thu Hằng as Mai , Phúc Lợi as Landowner , Thanh Tùng as Clown Jackfruit , Lã Khương as Clown Guava , Kiều Oanh as Matchmaker , Thanh Mai as Miss Nhài Mạnh Phóng as Village Chief , Bá Dũng as Son of a Rich Man , Tuấn Tài as Bamboo Deity , and other artists. Please join us next Thursday for the conclusion on Supreme Master Television. Thank you for watching Enlightening Entertainment. Please stay tuned to Supreme Master Television. Up next is Words of Wisdom. So long for now. The rich landowner was known to be the wealthiest man in the area but he had yet to have an heir. Thus he adopted an orphan girl named Mai with the motive of making financial gains in the future. As Mai was growing up, she turned into a beautiful and capable person. Trúc, who had been working diligently, intended to quit because of the miserly landowner. Knowing that Trúc and Mai were fond of each other, he promised to marry her to Trúc if Trúc agreed to cultivate barren land for three years. Being trusting, Trúc worked hard in faraway fields for three years. Meanwhile, the landowner accepted a powerful family’s proposal. Feeling pity that honest Trúc was betrayed, Mai tried to find a way to inform him. You’re very dutiful! But in the past you already arranged my marriage, a pledge of love can’t be waved aside. Now I find your intention to be different. I don’t know how to handle your instruction. What to handle? What better option can you find if you turn down this one? They are of the same social status as we, with a lot of land and luxurious houses. For wedding presents, they offer 100 sheets of fine silken fabric, blankets made of regal crepe, seven-treasure bed, and eight-fairy mosquito net. Oh my! The bride is to be honored by the village notables from the two families. She’ll walk on a red carpet. She’ll wear a Nghệ hat while the groom holds a Chinese fan in his hand. Respected Father, you said: They are of the same social status as we, with a lot of land and luxurious houses. So, you plan to marry me off to... To the rich man’s son. Oh! How is that possible? In three long years working for the in-laws, he has plowed the field, rain or shine. And you... If one lives in a temple, one has to sweep the banyan leaves. He’s from a poor family, and the other is from an honorable lineage. Just listen to me, child. I bow to you a hundred times, Father. I’d rather marry a poor husband than covet a wedding offering of gold and silver and let him endure all the bitterness. A disobedient child will go wrong 100 ways. O Father! My goodness! When I raised you, I’d hoped to rely on you one day. This is the time to tell the grapefruit from the shaddock. You’re a landlord’s daughter, and he’s just a hired farmer. Instead of a corn plant, you choose a cactus. O Father! I’m not a fool. I beg you. I wouldn’t listen to you. Where are you, Nhài? Yes. Bring your mistress inside for make-up. Father, I beg you! Go inside! (Father!) Go! Go! O mister, O sir! O sir, O sir! Jackfruit! A drought, a drought! Drought? What drought? When it rains, you’re in for a prosperous time, sir. How can it rain now to talk about prosperity? Respected sir, it’s like this. When rain falls, the water level rises. Isn’t it time for prosperity, sir? How can it rain in such a condition? Rain! It’s impossible. Rain! It won’t. I already said that... Sir, if it doesn’t rain, why then the termites are coming out? What? There are termites? Yes. But no male termites. I looked around, and only see one female termite. O sir! That termite is inlaid with gold and silver all over her body. Jackfruit! (Yes.) Are you referring to Ms. Matchmaker? Yes, sir. She’s inlaid with gold and silver all over? O sir! She’s loaded! Jackfruit! (Yes.) Go prepare for me a new set of clothes to greet my guest. (Yes.) Frankly, the matchmaker is me. I’m famous in matchmaking. On behalf of the marriage god, I’d tie any matrimonial thread. O sisters! (Yes.) The young master is from an opulent family. The rich landowner’s daughter is graceful and hard-working. My young master brings silver areca and golden betel as an offering to ask for her hand in marriage. As luck reckons yours truly, Heaven bestowed wealth upon me. Both families are opulent. Vương Khải and Thạch Sùng join as in-laws. Once this marriage is realized, I’ll definitely be rich. But... O sisters! (Yes?) But the groom is not only ugly, he’s also physically deformed. I must manage this well. That’s right. She’s in love with the farming boy. If the groom is to come over now, she’ll definitely pull a wry face at him. Therefore, on this engagement day, I must hide him away and manage it cleverly. The wedding must be held right way after the engagement. The needle in the bag will be discovered sooner or later. Last night, the bindweed birds sang at the gate. This morning, they twitter at the back of the house. I believe that a precious guest will visit me. Indeed... Servants! Yes. Bring betels and tea! Yes. There you are! Respectful greetings, my brother. Please have a seat, Ms. Matchmaker. As today is an auspicious day, I’m bringing over a tray of betel quids. After listening to your instruction a few days ago, I went back to report to the other family. Anything our family requests will be adhered to by them. How precious! Since my young master is a son prayed for, he has been much pampered. And his family owns many paddy fields. No one is as good-looking and capable as he is. Many proud young women were attracted to him. He’s declined them all and keeps asking for Mai to be his wife. How precious! It’s indeed a predestined marriage. Yes, and they’re very well matched! Servants! (Yes.) Go outside to invite the young master in for tea. (Yes.) Please wait for a little while. Why wait? According to rituals, the groom is supposed to come over, but please give him some time. Why? It’s hard to believe that such a handsome and intelligent man is so timid. In such broad daylight, he wouldn’t dare come over. Only at dusk would he go out for a short while. How very precious! When it’s dark, he’ll come to attend to you. All right. Sisters! (Yes.) Bring in the offerings. To rejoice at her engagement, we bring the ring and betel quids. Silken fabrics, sparkling gold and silver are to deeply please her, especially the resplendent things. O sister! There you are, Trúc! Are you done with the farming work? Why did you leave the farm? For three years, I’ve lived with meager meals and one-hearted devotion. But... I know, I know. For your three years of hard work, I’ll grant you a paddy field if you want. I don’t need paddy fields. How about a buffalo? I have no need for buffaloes. What about a tile-roof house? I don’t need the tile-roof house. Strange! The paddy field, you don’t want. The buffalo, you don’t take. Or you worry that you’re not paid properly? Then what do you want? I only want you to keep your pledge. Don’t let it be like a water-fern which flows away upon contact with the water. Please honor your words. Don’t be like a butterfly that comes and goes. So, that’s what it is. Look, Trúc! The bamboo string used to tie the cake is unchanged. My promise is as firm as the nail on the post. Who sweet-talked you into coming back and saying this ill-founded thing? Need anyone tell me? Good and bad news travels far and wide. You marry off your daughter to a wealthy family. Oh my! How cruel is worldly rumor! A successful man often has many enemies. Seeing someone who lives righteously, the wicked fabricate tales. Fabricating? So, who brought over those gold, silver and betel quids for a marriage proposal? Are you choosing a son-in-law from an opulent family and having no regard for me? How come you don’t keep your word? Aren’t you afraid of Heaven’s punishment, living like that? There are righteous and unrighteous ways, O sir. There are righteous and unrighteous ways, O sir. Why do you favor gold over righteousness and kindness? I’ll keep my vow of faithfulness to Mai. No wonder! You’re mistaken. Heavenly flame isn’t the ghost-light. Why rush to blame an honest person? My goodness! While Mai waited for three years, I counted every day as well. Pitying you, I took care of every single thing. Here! Come take a look! I’ve prepared a wedding gift of fresh betel quids to compensate all your hard work. I know you’re poor, so I’ve taken care of everything. Is it really so? Yet, you hate me, resent me, and intend to wreck everything. Fine, if the affinity is unfit, and love is ill-fated, you’re free to go to another place. I’ll generously untie the love knot and undo the pledge to please you. No, no. For three years, I’ve lived with meager meals and one-hearted devotion. I’ve tried to fulfill my vow of faithfulness, never once changing my mind. But the wedding can’t take place now. Why not, sir? Because I’m still concerned about the villagers’ sneering. What do they sneer at? Because water never flows upward. Since when did the bride’s side ever prepare wedding gifts? But I’ve labored for three long years. I know, I know. I know you’re poor, so I didn’t ask you for anything. But I must be cautious anyhow as worldly criticism is cruel: “Wait, the groom has no wedding gifts!” You’ve worked for the bride’s family for three years and I know you’re poor, so the wedding offering is waived for you, but you must find for me something. Yes. What would that be? A hundred-section bamboo. A hundred-section bamboo? Yes. That’s the only wedding offering. A hundred-section bamboo. After 3 months without the offering, the pledge is considered null. You’ll search for it until your bones rot. I wouldn’t marry my daughter to a penniless man. O Trúc! (Yes.) Good luck on your trip. I’ll wait for you at home with much longing. Have a good trip! Alas, what a strange wedding gift! But as I love her, what hardship and danger could deter me? I’ll travel thousands of miles, crossing rivers and mountain passes. I’d overcome all difficulties and perils. At the distance are mountains and clouds, I’m crossing the streams and brooks. Alas, a hundred-section bamboo would reach the sky, where will I find it in the deep forest amidst chilling mountain wind? It’s been ten days of pouring rain and scorching sun. I’ve crossed five mountains and ten hills. I’ve seen a hundred bamboo trees, none has a hundred sections. High mountain and thick forest, reaching the sky. Much affection I send to the mountain bamboos. Much love tugs at my heart all night. I long for the sight of my beloved, awaiting the day to share our newly made hat. Like the green bamboo tree, you provide cooling shade where I recline. Morning and evening, I befriend only the bamboo tree. When will our love turn into a happy marriage? How strange! Jubilant and melodious music. The entire forest, the branches and leaves sway. Streams stop rippling, birds stop chirping. O! From afar comes the bamboo’s sound. How unusual! The thick bamboo grove and dense forest suddenly open up to let me go through. The path is filled with scented grass and flowers. Rainbow cloud is giving me cooling shade. The sound of bamboo’s afloat and melodious. Is this a reality or a dream? O man of virtue and honesty, you’re like a fresh breeze and morning sun. Your kindness and affection are sea-vast, mountain-high. Prizing kindness and righteousness, I help the kind and righteous man. Who are you? Your kind look resembles the bamboo at the front alley, your voice gentle like a breeze in the countryside. I am the Bamboo Deity who has been with you from dawn to dusk. Since your childhood, the bamboo cradle was your companion. The bamboo at the alley endures rain and shine to share with you joys and sorrows throughout the years. I’ve helped you overcome hardships. Now suddenly in the wind I heard your lament and prayer. The earnest sound of the flute moves the mountain and forest. As good affinity allows, I’m going to help fulfill your wish. Respected Deity, your love for me is as immeasurable as leaves in the forest. Your help is as immense as ocean and sky. You’ve protected me through rain and shine. You nurtured me through my childhood and sheltered me in the chilly months. I grew up in a world of bitterness, yet still follow your upright way. But what I dream for is so difficult to obtain. Don’t worry! I’ll help you realize it. Is it wealth you are after? Then I will satisfy you with all the precious gems, gold and silver. Respected Deity, not many are blessed with great wealth, but this is not what I wish for. Really? This is not what you wish for? (No.) You’re poor but you care not for gold and silver. Perhaps you wish for a beautiful fairy? All right, I’ll help you. Five-color clouds are floating around the purple cavern amidst a stretch of lush mountains. The lotus dais awaits someone to come and fulfill a predestined affinity. I’ll give you a choice. Pick a blossoming flower in the wild, be it apricot, gourd, or bamboo, each with its own beauty and grace. No, Respected Deity. How many worldly people could meet a fairy? Few are so fortunate as to chance upon a golden affinity. I’m grateful that you care for this humble person, yet a vow can’t simply be brushed off. I once promised a life-long bond with Mai. How could I change my heart and disregard my vow? Practicing benevolence is hard, doing good deeds is wise. For years, you’ve been known as a virtuous man who covets neither beauty nor fame and gain. Your faithfulness has been tested. I now will help you obtain the one-hundred-section bamboo you wish for. I’m very grateful to you. O, the one-hundred- section bamboo tree! Now, son! (Yes.) The hundred separate bamboo sections will be connected as you say “Join now!” three times. say three times “Join now!” Correct! They will immediately be joined into one long stalk, extending into the cloud. I’m deeply grateful to you. Wait! It’s difficult to travel through forests and hills with such a long bamboo tree. Tell the one hundred sections to disjoin by saying three times “Separate now!” Say three times “Separate now!” The bamboo sections will separate instantly. You may bundle them up to bring them home. Set out now, as the way home is very far. I’ll help the righteous man to enjoy a happy marriage. I’m very grateful, Deity. The one-hundred-section bamboo tree extends high into the clouds. Wind after wind can hardly move it. Rain and shine, day after day, its root is deep and strong. All right. It’ll be done sooner or later. Today, you must keep in mind what I told you. All right. Etiquette, family tradition, local custom and national laws, I know them by heart. But I’m getting closer. You must drag the bride here for me. You can’t rush like that. There are the wedding ceremony and the introduction to both families before she can go to her husband’s home. Today you must take it easy. Take it easy? What is that anyway? That means you must speak gently. Gently? You must walk with ease. Walk with ease? Let me try it for you to see now. You’ve gone away, where can I find you? I’ve languished from longing. Now I’m faced with a perplexing situation. My father wouldn’t give me time; he even arranged the wedding today. How ironic is the marriage god’s arrangement! Why heartlessly tie me in wrongful wedlock? Desiring gold, he disregards affection and betrays you who labored long and hard. You went away, let me follow you. Let me go with you, O beloved!## O love! Cold wind, scorching sun and rain, I’ll accept all. Like a bird flying over streams and mountains, I’ll follow you. O love! Dear Nhài! Nhài! (Yes.) Has your mistress taken the medicine? She did, sir. Your mistress is still under treatment. Don’t let her go far. And you stay around in case she needs your help. Don’t spoil yourself with idleness, understand? (Yes, sir.) Mai, my child! (Yes.) Later, the groom’s family will come to ask for your hand in marriage. So be prepared, my dear. Respected father! What is it, dear? It’s said in books that “At home, one submits to her father.” Right. Obeying you is what I always bear in mind.
14 Sep 2011
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