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Tale of an Egg

19 October 2013

There is a tale of an egg spreading across China's social media originally told by an weibo identity called Winter Bamboo (冬竹**). The story goes like this:

During China's Three Kingdom's era, the second emperor Adou (阿斗) of Shu Kingdom, that was established with the help of Zhuge Liang - one of the best premiers in Chinese history - one day asked a Zen master: Now the founding emperor and the good premier all passed away and the kingdom is in disarray due to the increased internal disaffection and the external military pressure from the superpower state Wei, how can the dream of Shu Kingdom resurrection be realised under my leadership?

The Zen master placed his wooden clapper, that he used to punctuate his Buddhist chant, under a table leg and asked the emperor to stand an egg upright upon the table.

The emperor was born dim-witted, despite as crown prince he received the best education of the time and despite as emperor he had many smart royal concubines who knew how to manoeuvre their way up through the ranks in palace politics by improving their skills in dancing, singing, fashion parade and, sometimes, martial arts, so he began his egg project enthusiastically.

After several failed attempts, he helplessly watched the egg to roll down the table and smashed on the floor.

Staring at the cracked egg, the emperor somehow believed he was suddenly enlightened. "I know, master, you are telling me the most important step towards the realisation of the Shu Kingdom Dream is to bring balance to the forces from the left and from the right as a way to maintain stability."

The Zen master lost his temper: "That's it, you idiot! I was telling you this is not the job you can handle and you should just let your egg roll away (滚蛋, meaning "to go away")."

P. S. Adou the second emperor of Shu Kingdom now widely refers to President Xi Jinping by Chinese Netizens.

冬竹**: 阿斗问禅师:何以治国安邦统一天下?禅师拿木鱼垫起一个桌角,拿了枚鸡蛋给阿斗说:可立于桌面否?阿斗立半晌而不得,恍然大悟,放开鸡蛋说:我悟到了!大师的意思是,当务之急,平衡左右,做好维稳。禅师怒道:扶不起的阿斗啊!我的意思是,这活你干不了,赶紧滚蛋吧!


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