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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Travel -> 
The General Weituo
    2015-07-27  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

    James Baquet

    jamesbaquet@gmail.com

    IN the first hall of most temples, visitors are greeted by the fat, jolly figure of Mile Fo, the so-called Laughing Buddha. Standing behind him there is usually a sometimes fierce-looking warrior in armor. He is most often armed with a three-bladed sword, and he faces toward the Buddha in the main hall.

    This is Weituo (Skanda in Sanskrit), a general sworn to protect the Buddha’s followers (the sangha) and the temples where they study the Buddha’s teachings (the dharma). One legend says that when the Buddha left this earth to enter nirvana, he personally gave this important mission to Weituo.

    There is another more charming legend to explain Weituo’s position behind Mile Fo.

    It seems that when Mile Fo was on earth as the Chinese monk Budai, his generosity led to some trouble. Unscrupulous men would come to his temple and beg for food — and anything else they could get their hands on. Eventually, the temple fell into disrepair because of these con-men, and the sangha were starving.

    So the Buddha (not Mile Fo) sent Weituo to discipline the villains and recover the temple’s resources. The general then remained at the temple to prevent further losses.

    Today, when we enter a temple, the Laughing Buddha seems to be saying, “Come in! Enjoy!” And as we leave, Weituo gives us the once-over as if to say, “Don’t take anything that’s not yours!”

    Weituo, by the way, has something of a temper. So his position is fortunate because gazing at the Buddha keeps him calm!

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