Ravaging Times

chapter 406

(in January 3, 2015, I read a post on the editor’s blog that got me wondering about the connotation of the metaphor used in this chapter. I wonder if the use of umbrella is a subtle commentary on the real life political tension between mainland China and Hong Kong. YMMV)

When the world is poised for unification with blessings from His Majesty,
(not sure about second part)

and when the war is poised to end as Cao Cao states with conviction… how should the southeast respond?

[Han Dang]: The rain keeps pouring, Gong Jin. Should we call for a break?
(Gong Jin is Zhou Yu’s courtesy name)

[Zhou Yu]: No.

chapter 406: Continue to Continue
(or “propagate”)

[ZY]: He knew it would rain today,

[ZY]: so it must be part of his plan.

{sfx: sha~ sha~}

{sfx: sha~}

[Sun Quan]: It’s raining,

[SQ]: but is it fair that only I have an umbrella?

{sfx: sha~}

[SQ]: In the same way,

[SQ]: are you all content to share the burden of war when I’m the cause?

[SQ]: Even as loyal servants of this clan, the thought must have crossed your minds…

[SQ]: Why does a good-for-nothing dandy get to enjoy royalty?

[HD]: What nonsense is Zhong Mou blabbering about?
(Zhong Mou is Sun Quan’s courtesy name)

[SQ]: Yes, it must have crossed your minds.

[SQ]: Some of you might have even considered Cao Cao’s terms.

[SQ]: Everything will be resolved if I surrender.
[SQ]: Glory to the one who eliminates me.

[SQ]: I’ve stood here for so long. Cold and hungry. What the hell am I doing?
(I think he’s speaking as one of his audience)

[SQ]: I’ve lived for half my lifetime, but for what?

[SQ]: And why am I afraid to bring my umbrella?

[SQ]: So I’ve spoken your hearts. Now I’ll speak of mine.

[SQ]: The term Cao Cao gave me was even richer than the one for you.

[SQ]: “A son should be like Sun Zhong Mou.” That’s his praise for me.
[SQ]: If I were to submit, I may even be allowed to contribute to the court politics- fulfilling a dream that my late father couldn’t achieve.

[SQ]: Yet why do I hold on to the southeast and continue my role as a rebel…

[SQ]: and fabricate different excuses to survive.

[SQ]: Despite so much deaths we’ve caused, I must call ourselves the righteous army;

[SQ]: disregard the Emperor, but instead claim we’re loyal to the people;

[SQ]: view all living things with contempt, for they’re only tools for the power struggle;

[SQ]: One desires power because one alone cannot make a difference.
(not sure)

[SQ]: The endless lies are the result of countless holes in one’s argument.

[SQ]: He might look unfettered, but he has been scheming.
(“he doesn’t seem to be bothered, but he has been making thorough calculations…”)

[SQ]: It was all for just one thing in the end.

[SQ]: That thing is more important than anything else in this day and age.

[SQ]: It is power- my name sake. Sun clan’s power.
(wordplay on his name, same as “power”)

[SQ]: The name my father planted.

[?]: My Lord, stop undervaluing yourself.

[?]: Is that fair to those who have died?
(not sure)

[SQ]: Why do you cover up for me, people?

{step}

[SQ]: Let me be more forward then.
(“one step closer…”)

[SQ]: From Han’s licentious Emperor Ling to today’s powerless Son of Heaven! Is there still something for you all to look forward to?

[SQ]: From the chaos of Yellow Turbans to the fragmentation by the warlords- is our country still in one piece?

[SQ]: From Cao Cao taking the emperor hostage, to the lords paying him no heed- could the world still be at peace?
(“…lords each to their own manage political affairs…”)

[SQ]: From the sagely odes to virtues, to the corruption of humanity- is there still an ultimate Truth?

[SQ]: From the sages sacrificing themselves for the righteous way, to differing opinions everywhere– does Heaven still maintain its principle?

[SQ]: I’ll tell you this- history is merely repeating itself!

[SQ]: Whatever discontent you feel, or your wish to change the world- it’s all futile!
[SQ]: Because an unchangeable root will grow the same fruit!
(“because, unable to change root, whatever grows from it, still that thing”)

[SQ]: The rest of the world can do it, but I cannot!
(vague! interpret at will; maybe he means “maybe the world can put up with this bullshit, but I can’t”)

The rain will keep pouring, and there will always be people without an umbrella…
(“…unable to use an umbrella”, the metaphor could mean that they don’t have one or cannot take it out to use it)

The rain is still the rain; the people still the people.

The world is still the same…

People keep doing certain things in this day and age.

They all knew in their hearts, even if no one dared to speak of it.

From Sun Jian hiding the Imperial Seal for the sake of the kingdom, to Sun Ce engulfing the southeast and commanding former vassals of the Imperial court. And now to Sun Quan refusing the court’s call to surrender. What is this?

It’s the truth.

Their “king” spoke the words that they have longed to hear.

Every utterance echoed the wish that the people of this land could only dream of for thousands of years!

All men can become like Yao and Shun.
(a quote from Meng-zi)

It is the most noble path for living souls with dignity.

It is the greatest warning to those in power.

It is the best motivator to their supporters.

Sacrilegious, but satisfying.
(wordplay lost in translation)

Satisfying!

Those who lived with false values,

those sheep that lost their way,

those beasts who forgot their humanity…

and… those slaves who believed that they owe everything to the Heavens-
(“…those who always thought everything was heaven-bestowed…”)

they have long forgotten that they owe it all to themselves.
(“…everything came from their own struggles”)

Some are as significant as Mount Tai, or as insignificant as a goose feather.

Some are spectacular yet gloomy.

Others, full of ups and downs.

Some are idealists.

Some are realists.

Some are spectators.

The Heavens…
is always watching, but never answers.

Because whoever claims to speak on its behalf tends to be an opportunist.

Loyalty is only a method-
with false words the men of letters can send the ignorant to their deaths.
(slightly distorted)

It’s a despicable method by a ruler to protect his own interest.

Ignorance is not a sin, nor is it fated.

Heaven knows that men are ignorant and does not expect them to overcome their follies immediately.

But it expects mankind to improve over each generation.

The concept of Continuation is profound.
(“procreation” is too literal, “propagation” doesn’t always work in the text, but here “continuation” is just confusing/absurd; somehow my mind wants to connect this with the idea of “fail faster” concept in Game design, the “iterative design” process)
But at last, I understand.

Thanks.

This is how it feels to understand the self.

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