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玉历宝钞
The Jade Guidebook

The First Court

photo by DKJ

The First Court
The Realm of Lord Qín Guǎng
第一殿 秦广王

Dì-Yī Diàn Qín Guǎng Wáng

第一殿 秦廣王
His Infernal Majesty Qín Guǎng is especially in charge of the register of life and death for both old and young, 秦广王的业务,专管人间的长寿与夭折,出生与死亡的册籍;

Qín Guǎng wáng de yèwù, zhuānguǎn rénjiān de chángshòu yǔ yāozhé, chūshēng yǔ sǐwáng de cèjí;

秦廣王的業務,專管人間的長壽與夭折,出生與死亡的冊籍;
and presides at the judgment-seat in the netherworld. 统一管理阴间受刑的吉、凶。

tǒngyī guǎnlǐ yīnjiān shòuxíng de jīi, xiōng.

統一管理陰間受刑的吉、凶。
His ghostly hall of judgment is situated in the great Ocean, away beyond the Wòjiāo rock [the gateway to Purgatory], far to the west near the murky road which leads to the Yellow Springs [i.e., the netherworld]. 鬼判殿位居大海中、沃燋石之外,正西的黄泉黑路上。

Guǐ pàn diàn wèijū dàhǎi zhōng, Wòjiāoshí zhīwài, zhèngxī de Huángquán hēilù shàng.

鬼判殿位居大海中、沃燋石之外,正西的黃泉黑路上。
Some people, dying in old age, are good people and are to be led to heaven or to the western paradise. 凡是善人寿终的时候,有的接引往生天堂,或西方极乐。

Fánshì shànrén shòuzhōng de shíhou, yǒude jiēyǐn wǎngshēng tiāntáng, huò xīfāng jí lè.

凡是善人壽終的時候,有的接引往生天堂,或西方極樂。
If they are men and women whose record of good and evil deeds is perfectly balanced, 如是功过两半的男人、女人,

Rúshì gōngguò liǎngbàn de nánren, nǚrén,

如是功過兩半的男人, 女人,
then after death they are sent directly to the tenth court, and then transferred back to life, 死后送交第十殿,发往投生人间,

sǐhòu sòngjiāo dì shí diàn, fāwǎng tóushēng rénjiān,

死後送交第十殿,發往投生人間,
sometimes male becoming female, female male, according to their just deserts. 有的男人转生女人;有的女人转生男人,各按照在世时所造的业力,因缘,分别去接受因果报。

yǒude nánren zhuǎnshēng nǚrén; yǒude nǚrén zhuǎnshēng nánren, gè ànzhào zàishì shí suǒzào de yè lì, yīnyuán, fēnbié qù jiēshòu yīnguǒ bào.

有的男人轉生女人;有的女人轉生男人,各按照在世時所造的業力,因緣,分別去接受因果報。


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The Terrace of the Mirror Of Sin

All those whose good deeds are outnumbered by their bad ones 凡是在世恶行较多,善行较少的人,

Fánshì zàishì èxíng jiào duō, shànxíng jiào shǎo de rén

凡是在世惡行較多,善行較少的人,
are sent to a terrace on the right of the court, called the Terrace of the Mirror of Sin. 则引入殿右的高台,名为孽镜台。

zé yǐnrù diàn yòu de gāotái, míngwéi Nièjìng Tái.

則引入殿右的高臺,名爲孽鏡臺。
The terrace is ten feet in height and the mirror is about fifty arm-lengths in circumference and hangs towards the east. 台高一丈,镜子大约十人圈围,向东悬挂,

Tái gāo yīzhàng, jìngzi dàyuē shí rén quān wéi, xiàng dōng xuánguà,

臺高一丈,鏡子大約十人圈圍,向東懸掛,
Above are seven characters written horizontally over it:

"Before the Terrace of the Mirror of Sin there are no good men."
上横书七字:“孽镜台前无好人。”

shàng héng shū qī zì: "Nièjìng Tái qián wú hǎorén."

上橫書七字:“孽鏡臺前無好人。”
There the wicked ghosts escorted there are able to see the trechery of their own hearts while they were among the living, 被押赴来的多恶行鬼魂,自然地见到自己在世时心地之奸险,

Bèi yā fù láide duō èxíng guǐhún, zìrán dì jiàndào zìjǐ zàishì shí xīndì zhī jiānxiǎn,

被押赴來的多惡行鬼魂,自然地見到自己在世時心地之奸險,
and the miseries of death and hell. 以及死赴地狱受苦的惨状。

yǐjí sǐ fù dìyù shòukǔ de cǎnzhuàng.

以及死赴地獄受苦的慘狀。
photo by DKJ
Only then do they finally understand the proverb, 此时才知道:

Cǐshí cái zhīdào:

此時才知道:
"Ten thousand taels of yellow gold
cannot be brought away.
But every crime will tell its tale
upon the judgment day."
万两的黄金都带不进去,
一辈子只有罪孽随着到地狱来。


Wàn liǎng de huángjīn dōu dài bù jìnqù,
yībèizi zhǐyǒu zuìniè suízhe dào dìyù lái.


萬量的黃金都帶不進去,
一輩子只有罪孽隨著到地獄來。
When the souls have been to the Terrace and seen their wickednesses, they are forwarded into the second court, 照过孽镜台后,批解第二殿、

Zhào guò Nièjìng Tái hòu, pījiè dì èr diàn,

照過孽鏡臺後,批解第二殿、
to begin being sorted by dungeon and being tortured 开始分发地狱、运用刑具,

kāishǐ fēnfā dìyù, yùnyòng xíngjù,

開始分發地獄、運用刑具,
so that they receive every kind of painful punishment 令受诸种苦痛的刑罚。

lìng shòu zhū zhǒng kǔtòng de xíngfá.

令受諸種苦痛的刑罰。


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photo by DKJ

SINNERS OF THE FIRST COURT

Their offenses and reasons for them, are as follows: 其罪刑与罪因详情如下:

Qí zuì xíng yǔ zuìyīn xiángqíng rúxià:

其罪刑與罪因詳情如下:
1. The Crime of Suicide 自杀者的罪刑

Zìshāzhě de Zuì Xíng

自殺者的罪刑
Should there be any who enjoys life without reflecting that heaven and earth produce mortals, 假如有世人,不去思考天地生人,

Jiǎrú yǒu shìrén, bù qùsì kǎo tiāndì shēngrén,

假如有世人,不去思考天地生人,
and that father and mother bring the child to maturity, a burden heavy as a mountain 父母养育身体,珍贵异常,恩重如山。

fùmǔ yǎngyù shēntǐ, zhēnguì yìcháng, ēnzhòngrúshān.

父母養育身體,珍貴異常,恩重如山。
and, who ignores the four obligations to parents, to all living things, to the ruler, and to the three Buddhist treasures (scripture, law, and clergy), 父母恩、众生恩、国王恩、三宝恩等四恩未报。

fùmǔ ēn, zhòngshēng ēn, guówáng ēn, Sānbǎo ēn děng sì ēn wèi bào.

父母恩、衆生恩、國王恩、三寶恩等四恩未報。
and who, before receiving the summons (to die), commits suicide without authorization 未奉到勾贴,就擅自轻生、

wèi fèngdào gōu tiē, jiù shànzì qīngshēng,

未奉到勾貼,就擅自輕生、
by cutting his throat, hanging himself, poisoning, or drowning himself 自杀、上吊、服毒、投水等等。

zìshā, shàngdiào, fúdú, tóushuǐ děngděng.

自殺、上吊、服毒、投水等等。
and who does the deed not out of loyalty, filial piety, chastity, or friendship 除因忠孝节义的德行,

chú yīn zhōngxiào jié yì de déxíng,

除因忠孝節義的德行,
(for which sacrifice of their his live he would go to Heaven), 牺牲生命,死后为神之外,

xīshēng shēngmìng, sǐhòu wéi shén zhīwài,

犧牲生命,死後爲神之外,
but rather who in a trivial burst of rage, 假若是因细小的忿恨,

jiǎruò shì yīn xìxiǎo de chóuhèn,

假若是因細小的仇恨,
or fearing the consequences of a crime which would not merit death, 或因犯罪的羞事被发觉即率尔轻生,究其所犯罪刑,并未至死刑的地步。

huò yīn fànzuì de xiū shì bèi fājué jí shuài'ěr qīngshēng, jiū qí suǒ fànzuì xíng, bìngwèi zhìsǐ xíng de dìbù.

或因犯罪的羞事被發覺即率爾輕生,究其所犯罪刑,並未至死刑的地步。
or in the hope of blaming or injuring a fellow-creature 也有的想嫁祸、加害他人

yě yǒude xiǎng jiàhuò, jiāhài tārén

也有的想嫁禍、加害他人
then such a person, when the last breath has left his body, 而弄假成真,轻生气绝的,

ér nòngjiǎ chéngzhēn, qīngshēng qìjué de,

而弄假成真,輕生氣絕的,
shall be escorted by door gods and god of the hearth. 以上诸种,门神、灶神,

yǐshàng zhū zhǒng, ménshén, zàoshén,

以上諸種,門神、竈神,
under guard to this court 立即押解本殿,

lìjí yājiè běn diàn,

立即押解本殿,
and shall be placed in the Hunger and Thirst Sections. 收入饥饿厂与干渴厂。

shōurù Jī'è Chǎng yǔ Gānkě Chǎng.

收入饑餓廠與乾渴廠。
Every day from seven till eleven o'clock 这些自杀的鬼魂,每逢戌、亥日,

Zhè xiē zìshā de guǐhún, měiféng xū, hài rì,

這些自殺的鬼魂,每逢戌、亥日,
such shades must resume the suffering of their moment of death, and 完全如临死时一般痛苦。

wánquán rú línsǐ shí yībān tòngkǔ.

完全如臨死時一般痛苦。
in the scenes of pain and suffering, they shall appear as they were before. 一切痛苦的情景,照原来的样子,再出现一次。

yīqiè tòngkǔ de qíngjǐng, zhào yuánlái de yàngzi, zài chūxiàn yīcì.

一切痛苦的情景,照原來的樣子,再出現一次。
After seventy days, or one or two years, as the case may be, 有的七十天,有的一、二年之后,押解其魂魄,

Yǒude qīshí tiān, yǒude yī, èr nián zhī hòu, yājiè qí húnpò,

有的七十天,有的一、二年之後,押解其魂魄,
they will be conducted back to the scene of their suicide, to suffer again their regrets 再回到寻死的地方,受悔恨折磨之苦。

zài huídào xúnsǐ de dìfang, shòu huǐhèn zhémo zhī kǔ.

再回到尋死的地方,受悔恨折磨之苦。
but will not be permitted to use the foods, or the paper goods, or other offerings to the dead. 并且不许接受羹饭、纸帛等祭品的祭拜。

bìngqiě bùxǔ jiēshòu gēng fàn, zhǐ bó děng jìpǐn de jìbài.

並且不許接受羹飯、紙帛等祭品的祭拜。
If the suicide ghost repents, then it must control itself, 假如自杀的鬼魂自知忏悔,敛心守藏,

Jiǎrú zìshā de guǐhún zìzhī chànhuǐ, liǎn xīn shǒu cáng,

假如自殺的鬼魂自知懺悔,斂心守藏,
and may not appear as a ghost to frighten people 不现出鬼魅形来惊吓人;

bù xiànchū guǐmèi xíng láijīng xiàrén;

不現出鬼魅形來驚嚇人;
or wildly seek to procure a substitute. 也不乱找替死的人。

yě bù luàn zhǎo tì sǐde rén.

也不亂找替死的人。
Rather it must wait until the person it has harmed forgets the harm, 那么等遭他牵累的人,已经脱离牵累,

Nàme děng zāo tā qiānlěi de rén, yǐjing tuōlí qiānlěi,

那麽等遭他牽累的人,已經脫離牽累,
and then the door gods and the god of the hearth will transfer it under guard back to this court. 是日,门神、灶神,仍然将此犯押解到本殿,

shìrì, ménshén, zàoshén, réngrán jiāng cǐ fàn yājiè dào běn diàn,

是日,門神、竈神,仍然將此犯押解到本殿,
to be sent on to the second court, 转发第二殿。

zhuǎnfā dì èr diàn.

轉發第二殿。
where its balance of good and evil will be investigated, and dreadful tortures applied, 重新考查较对他的功与过,从重加刑,

chóngxīn kǎochá jiàoduì tāde gōng yǔ guò, cóngzhòng jiā xíng,

重新考查較對他的功與過,從重加刑,
and it will then be passed on through the various courts to suffer the utter misery of hell. 再另递交各殿,配发地狱去受苦。

zài lìng dìjiāo gè diàn, pèifā dìyù qù shòukǔ.

再另遞交各殿,配發地獄去受苦。
Should anyone have the intention of appearing to the living to frighten them or to seek a substitute, 假如曾经生现形吓人或找替死的心,

Jiǎrú céngjīng shēng xiànxíng xiàrén huò zhǎo tì sǐde xīn,

假如曾經生現形嚇人或找替死的心,
or use words to frighten or deceive someone, 或用这些言语吓人、诈人,

huò yòng zhè xiē yányǔ xiàrén, zhà rén,

或用這些言語嚇人、詐人,
then even though he doesn't kill anyone, or even should he do a thousand years of good deeds, no hell shall be permitted to remit his punishment. 虽然未至令人死亡;那么即使一千曾经行诸善事,所有地狱也一概不准减免其罪刑。

suīrán wèi zhì lìngrén sǐwáng; nàme jíshǐ yīqiān céngjīng xíng zhū shànshì, suǒyǒu dìyù yě yīgài bùzhǔn jiǎnmiǎn qí zuì xíng.

雖然未至令人死亡;那麽即使一千曾經行諸善事,所有地獄也一概不准減免其罪刑。
Any soul which after suicide does not remain invisible, 若是轻生已死之后,毫不收敛鬼的形影,

Ruòshì qīngshēng yǐ sǐ zhī hòu, háobù shōuliǎn guǐ de xíngyǐng,

若是輕生已死之後,毫不收斂鬼的形影,
but instead frightens people, even causing their death, 以致惊吓、令人丧命的话;

yǐzhì jīngxià, lìngrén sàngmìng dehuà;

以致驚嚇、令人喪命的話;
will immediately be seized by black-faced, long-tusked demon servants and dragged for torture to the various hells, 立即命青面獠牙的鬼役,勾到各地狱去受苦。

lìjí mìng qīngmiànliáoyá de guǐ yì, gōu dào gèdì yù qù shòukǔ.

立即命青面獠牙的鬼役,勾到各地獄去受苦。
and a hundred days later will be thrust into the great Avici Hell, 满一百日后,发配入阿鼻大地狱,

mǎn yībǎi rì hòu, fāpèi rù Ābí dàdì yù,

滿一百日後,發配入阿鼻大地獄,
for ever to remain hung up in fetters, and not permitted to be born again. 永远用锁链予以扣住,不许超生。

yǒngyuǎn yòng suǒliàn yǔyǐ kòuzhù, bùxǔ chāoshēng.

永遠用鎖鏈予以扣住,不許超生。
photo by DKJ



The Fortress of Wrongful Death (Wǎngsǐ Chéng 枉死城), where those who commit suicide or die by violence are held until their destined time of death. Different artists place this structure in different courts.

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2. The crime of Rushing Through Scriptures 诵经漏脱字句之罪刑

Sòngjīng Lòutuō Zìjù zhī Zuì Xíng

誦經漏脫字句之罪刑
Every Buddhist or Taoist priest who receives money for prayers and liturgies, 凡是出家人、道士、拿人的钱,为人拜教育诵经忏悔,

fánshì chūjiārén, dàoshi, nárén de qián, wéirén bài jiàoyù sòngjīng chànhuǐ,

凡是出家人、道士、拿人的錢,爲人拜教育誦經懺悔,
but skips over words and misses out sentences, 遗漏字句、或页卷的,

yílòu zìjù, huò yè juàn de,

遺漏字句、或頁卷的,
on arriving at this court, will be sent to the Office of the Completion of Scriptures. 就带来本殿,发进补经所。

jiù dàilái běn diàn, fā jìn Bǔjīng Suǒ.

就帶來本殿,發進補經所。
There, in a small dark room, 各个送入内藏经黑暗的小房间内。

Gège sòngrù nèi zàngjīng hēi'àn de xiǎofáng jiān nèi.

各個送入內藏經黑暗的小房間內。
he shall pick out such passages as he has omitted, writing them legibly or chanting them clearly, 所有他遗漏的字句之处,一概都签写明白,补诵清楚。

suǒyǒu tā yílòu de zìjù zhīchù, yīgài dōu qiān xiěmíng bái, bǔ sòng qīngchu.

所有他遺漏的字句之處,一概都簽寫明白,補誦清楚。
by the uncertain light of an infinitesimal wick, burning in ten jīn of oil. 此处设有油灯,贮存数十斤的油。

cǐchù shèyǒu yóudēng, zhùcún shùshí jīn de yóu.

此處設有油燈,貯存數十斤的油。
There is only a tiny wick, sometimes brighter, sometimes darker, 只有一根细线点,有时明亮、有时黑,

Zhǐyǒu yīgēn xìxiàn diǎn, yǒushí míngliàng, yǒushí hēi,

只有一根細線點,有時明亮、有時黑,
so one dares not breathe, and must quickly fill in that was left out. 不能一口气就很快的补写完足。

bùnéng yīkǒuqì jiù hěn kuài de bǔ xiě wánzú.

不能一口氣就很快的補寫完足。
3. Punishments for the Distracted 修行起贪图供养者的罪刑

Xiūxíng Qǐ Tāntú Gòngyǎng Zhě de Zuì Xíng

修行起貪圖供養者的罪刑
Even good and virtuous Buddhist or Taoist priests whose minds get distracted by greed or desire for their fee must also repair their chants here, 如果原来净修行的出家人或道士,却发了贪心,枉求供养以享受的人,也得在此补经。

Rúguǒ yuánlái jìng xiūxíng de chūjiārén huò dàoshi, què fā le tānxīn, wǎng qiú gòngyàng yǐ xiǎngshòu de rén, yě dé zàicǐ bǔ jīng.

如果原來淨修行的出家人或道士,卻發了貪心,枉求供養以享受的人,也得在此補經。
4. Sincere People Who Practice Moral Teachings and Advance the Cause of Buddhism 诚心修行,弘扬佛法者之利益

Chéngxīn Xiūxíng, Hóngyáng Fófǎ Zhě zhī Lìyì

誠心修行,弘揚佛法者之利益
Every man or woman in private devotion or any nun, who in sincerity 一般在家修持得善男信女或尼姑,十分诚心,

Yībān zài jiā xiū chí dé shànnán xìnnǚ huò nígū, shífēn chéngxīn,

一般在家修持得善男信女或尼姑,十分誠心,
when repeating any scripture or incantation or repeating of the name of a buddha 心口一如地拜念一切经、咒、佛号。

xīnkǒu yīrú dì bài niàn Yīqièjīng, zhòu, fó hào.

心口一如地拜念一切經、咒、佛號。
may have made mistakes or left out something 即使有错误、遗漏;

jíshǐ yǒu cuòwù, yílòu;

即使有錯誤、遺漏;
from over-earnestness, attention not being properly fixed on the actual words repeated— 然而重在诚心,而不重在字句。

rán'ér zhòng zài chéngxīn, ér bù zhòng zài zìjù.

然而重在誠心,而不重在字句。
for this sort of sincere person, the Buddha has directed that he need not undergo Completion of Scriptures, and on the first day of each month his contributions are entered in the register of the virtuous. 类此诚心修持之人,佛降旨不用补经,每月初一,并将其功德记载于善籍之中。

lèicǐ chéngxīn xiū chí zhī rén, fó jiàngzhǐ bùyòng bǔ jīng, měi yuè chū yī, bìng jiāng qí gōngdé jìzǎi yú shàn jí zhīzhōng.

類此誠心修持之人,佛降旨不用補經,每月初一,並將其功德記載於善籍之中。


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EXHORTATION FOR THE FIRST COURT

O you still in the human world, on the 1st day of the 2nd moon, 世间之人,若于每年的二月初一日,

Shìjiān zhī rén, ruò yú měinián de èr yuè chū yī rì,

世間之人,若於每年的二月初一日,
turn to the north and worship sincerely, cultivate the perfection of the the Èmítuó Buddha, lord of the sweat dews, and benefit all all the myriad beings 向西方至诚地礼拜,学习阿弥陀佛甘露王清净,利益一切众生的庄严万德。

xiàng xīfāng zhìchéng dì lǐbài, xuéxí Ēmítuófó gān líng wáng qīngjìng, lìyì yīqiè zhòngshēng de zhuāngyán wàn dé.

向西方至誠地禮拜,學習阿彌陀佛甘靈王清淨,利益一切衆生的莊嚴萬德。
practice virtue, chant scriptures and incantations, do good works, 将平常忆念行持佛德,及诵经、持咒、严守戒德的内功外德,

jiāng píngcháng yìniàn xíngchí fó dé, jí sòngjīng, chí zhòu, yánshǒu jiè dé de nèigōng wài dé,

將平常憶念行持佛德,及誦經、持咒、嚴守戒德的內功外德,
and fix your thoughts on good, that you may attain paradise! 发大念力,祈当生得证极乐世界得性德。

fā dà niàn lì, qí dāng shēngdé zhèng jílè shìjiè dé xìng dé.

發大念力,祈當生得證極樂世界得性德。
Moreover promote the precepts of Buddha with great vigor so as to benefit all living things, 并且发是经进去修持,尽力地宏扬佛法,利益一切重生。

Bìngqiě fā shì jīng jìnqu xiū chí, jìnlì dì hóngyáng fófǎ, lìyì yīqiè chóngshēng.

並且發是經進去修持,盡力地宏揚佛法,利益一切重生。
And thus when the last hour comes your spirits may be received led by a buddha and led to paradise. 那么寿终之后,立即蒙佛接引,往生极乐。

Nàme shòuzhōng zhī hòu, lìjí méng fó jiēyǐn, wǎngshēng jí lè.

那麽壽終之後,立即蒙佛接引,往生極樂。

Shídiàn Cover Illustration

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