Five and seven syllable poems, verse and prose, yuefu and scriptures.
Star World was boundless, filled with the Hundred Schools of Thought. Although Chen Mo’s “That Life” was not a poem in the traditional sense, Star World did not have the structural restrictions of those so-called ancient poems. Beautiful things always were able to move a person’s heart no matter the era.
“That Life” fully described the goal of romance. Everyone could imagine that sincere yet tragic scene just from the words alone.
Lu Xun said that tragedy was to destroy something beautiful for other people to watch, and often, this kind of tragedy was the most able to penetrate into a person’s heart, especially when it came to Zen Masters who cultivated Zen. Chen Mo’s well-executed usage of terminology pertaining to Buddhism and Zen was particularly inspirational.
Unconsciously, the meditative Zen Masters, who all had faces like dry wells, all showed astonishment.
Regarding the “Bodhi Cliff,” Chen Mo was determined to have it. He would not give Emperor Tang any more chances to suppress him. This Young Master read a lot in his previous life, and many of those were Zen poems. If this poem still could not shake them, he even considered using an even more famous “See You Or Not”1 to shock everyone. Of course, the composer of this massively popular “See You Or Not” naturally had no relation to the Sixth Dalai Lama.
“Your Highness Chen Mo, this poem is indeed composed with a distinctive style, a breath of fresh air, and one that is moving, but love…” Tang Feng broke this silence, attempting to suppress him in terms of Zen.
But how could Chen Mo give him the chance.
“Oh, right, Little Sister Yanyu’s poem just now was pretty good. I had another inspiration and thought of a new poem.” Chen Mo calmly said.
Everyone’s jaws dropped.
You thought up another one?
“Oh? Your Highness Chen Mo, please recite it.” Buddhist Master Compassionate Emptiness carefully requested.
Chen Mo secretly activated the School Of Mind, putting himself into a state for poetry. This appeared even more appealing, influencing the peoples’ mood.
As expected, this subtle change in Chen Mo made everyone unable to help but be startled.
Why did this brat suddenly seem like a senior monk with achievement in the path, to surprisingly have the presence of a Great Zen Master.
Chen Mo slowly said: “To see a world in a grain of sand, and a Heaven in a wild flower. Hold infinity in the palm of your hand and eternity in an hour.” “To See A World In A Grain Of Sand” could be said to be an absolute classic. Originally, Chen Mo wanted to use the classic story of Three Laughs at Tiger Brook, but he did not know if the people in this place had heard of it before, so he switched to using a poem from the English poet, William Blake.
The meaning was similar, full of a Zen reflection.
Even Tang Feng was slack jawed. Was this brat a monster, how could he think of such a poem this quickly. Anyone could tell that the second Zen poem Chen Mo composed was completely dominant.
Chen Mo put his palms together and respectfully sat down.
The Wanshou Temple’s Four Great Zen Masters looked at each other. From the pinnacle of romance to the pondering of eternity, this brat’s transformation in Zen was frighteningly abnormal.
“His Highness Chen Mo truly is a once in a millennium monster, to surprisingly be able to compose these so quickly.”
“If I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes, I would never have believed it for my entire life.”
An uproar, exclamations of surprise.
“Nicely done.” Chen Zhangtian slightly smiled.
“Yanyu is ashamed of her inferiority.” Jiang Yanyu generously acknowledged.
Even those people who disliked Chen Mo had now lost their voices, unable to find the slightest chance to retort. Chen Mo’s two Zen poems were both classics to the Wanshou Temple no matter the era. Any more nitpicking, and they would actually make fools of themselves.
At this time, the nobles standing on the imperial family’s side placed expectant gazes on the crown princes, hoping that His Imperial Highness could compose a comparable Zen poem to suppress Chen Mo’s momentum. So long as he could make one, they believed the advantage was still with them.
“Your Imperial Highness the Crown Prince, Your Servant wonders if you have a Zen masterpiece of not?” Chen Lin asked, delighting in his disaster.
Tang Feng was sullen. How could he make one. His poem from a moment ago was composed after asking many Zen masters and scholars for instruction. In a strict sense, it was not his masterpiece either. To make him go make one on the spot, it would have been better to kill himself right now.
Tang Feng could not understand. Understanding of “Zen” required the wisdom of nirvana; it required several decades of deep thinking in order to be achieved. How was this Chen Mo able to compose “That Life,” a masterpiece of passion of two lives, as well as the appreciation of “To See A World In A Grain Of Sand.” Could it be that this cripple suddenly became an immortal?
“Everything is up to Buddhist Master Compassionate Emptiness’ judgment.” These words that Tang Feng spat out through gritted teeth was equivalent to acknowledging his defeat.
“Your Highness Chen Mo, your mastery of Zen makes Old Monk very impressed. How does everyone feel about selecting His Highness Chen Mo as number one?” Buddhist Master Compassionate Emptiness kindly asked. Although he had received Emperor Tang’s request beforehand, he had no way to so shamelessly acknowledge Tang Feng as superior. Otherwise, the Wanshou Temple would be ruined.
The Four Great Zen Masters said one after another: “As he should be.”
“Before the court examination, Your Highness Chen Mo is allowed to come to our Wanshou Mountain Temple at any time. Old Monk will bring Your Highness to the Bodhi Cliff.” Zen Master Compassionate Emptiness said.
“Your Servant is indebted to your esteemed temple’s profound love.” Chen Mo was also modest.
Buddhist Master Compassionate Emptiness smiled, an indescribable regret in his eyes. “Your Imperial Majesty, the time is late. The monks still need to return to the temple to meditate. We shall take our leave for now.”
“We truly have troubled you, Senior Monks.” Emperor Tang forthrightly smiled.
Buddhist Master Compassionate Emptiness placed his palms together. Then, he meticulously repeated the gesture to Chen Mo. Finally, the monks departed the banquet hall. Without the serious Wanshou Temple monks, the sitting warriors and cultivators had a weight lifted from their chests and let loose.
Emperor Tang drank wine to conceal his ashen expression. He never imagined that things would be completely outside his expectations. Originally, he thought that by relying on Zen’s poems, this would be enough for everyone to weaken Chen Mo’s influence on Zen. But what was unforeseen was that this Chen Mo was surprisingly able to say something astonishing, to make the Wanshou Temple’s monks wholeheartedly accept him.
Could it be possible that this child actually received a cassock and alms bowl of a Zen Master?2
Unable to suppress Chen Mo this time, Emperor Tang was a bit fidgety.
Right, there was also that Great Master Wuyi of the School Of Mind. In a moment, there would be a public proclamation of the School Of Mind. Emperor Tang originally wanted to use this opportunity to foster a relationship. Now that Chen Mo was apparently unfathomable, perhaps he would help the boy become an overnight celebrity again instead.
This cannot happen.
He could not allow this child to become any more sensational. Emperor Tang narrowed his eyes, suddenly whispering to Supervisor Yin who was beside him. After Supervisor Yin listened, he quietly left the banquet hall.
Emperor Tang inwardly sneered. There had never been a young man who could make him so angry.
Good, very good.
Although the plan to suppress Chen Mo’s Zen reputation was bungled and instead helped Chen Mo become a tiger that had grown wings in terms of Zen, Emperor Tang did not give up yet. This next step ought to be beating down Chen Mo’s cultivation of martial arts, to make him taste defeat.
Chen Mo’s thoughtful deliberation had finally granted him the Wanshou Temple’s approval and an opportunity to enter the Bodhi Cliff. His big sister congratulated him, a joyful smile brimming across her face. She was happier than if she herself had entered the Bodhi Cliff.
“Little Brother, you can surpass Big Sister in no time at all. You mustn’t abandon Big Sister in the future.” Chen Luan pinched him.
“Third Sister, your worries are too weird. How could I possibly abandon you.” Chen Mo could not help but smile.
Chen Luan nodded in satisfaction, as things should be.
Meanwhile, on Jiangnan Mansion’s side.
The scholarly and refined Jiang Ruxiu indifferently drank his wine and said to his daughter: “Yanyu, this Chen Mo is a bit interesting.”
Jiang Yanyu faintly smiled: “Yes, Daughter truly wants to dig into his brain to see what he is thinking of. To make two Zen poems of completely different styles in a row, how can one person have such a sharply contrasting understanding.”
“No matter what, it would be as easy as turning over your palm to kill him, Little Sister Yanyu.” One of the elder brothers of Jiangnan Mansion said disdainfully.
Jiang Yanyu gave a disdainful response to her relative’s arrogance.
Jiang Ruxiu said: “Your father is somewhat unable to see through this Chen Mo right now. Should he enter the Bodhi Cliff and comprehend something, that would be troublesome.”
“Father is overthinking. No matter how strong he is, he could not possibly surpass Buddhist Master Compassionate Emptiness in just a few short days, correct?” Jiang Yanyu seriously thought it over. The Wanshou Temple Abbot meditated at the Bodhi Cliff for decades in order to have a breakthrough. Even if Chen Mo was any more abnormal, could he be this formidable?
“However, Father does not need to worry. The Misty Rain Sword is already accomplished. Even if Chen Mo is a Servant Star, Daughter is certain of victory.”
“As long as you understand in your own heart.”
The banquet’s atmosphere was increasingly lively. Entertainers danced, Youwei played her music, and Chen Mo looked all around, surreptitiously knitting his brow. “Little Brother, which beauty are you looking at?”
“No, I’m wondering why Wuyi hasn’t arrived yet.” Chen Mo shook his head.
When he mentioned this, Chen Luan also remembered. It was because of Chen Mo that Gu Wuyi was invited into the palace. While she was considered an after-tea party joke in Chang’an, Gu Wuyi’s appearance at the banquet could undoubtedly add an air of mystery to Chen Mo.
According to the time, Gu Wuyi ought to be introduced by Emperor Tang right now.
But seeing Emperor Tang chat with the Two Lords, there did not appear to be any intention of this at all.
“Most likely he won’t introduce her.” Chen Luan deduced the situation. “Little Brother, you just demonstrated extraordinary skill in Zen. Right now, everyone in Chang’an knows that Gu Wuyi agreed to enter the palace because of you. For the emperor to now think of expelling her, that would be inviting disgrace upon himself.”
Yes, anyone else would not have tolerated their opponent maintaining a superiority either. Under Heaven, this dynasty was named Tang, not Chen.
“But this emperor perhaps cannot so easily miss an appointment with a Star General.” Chen Luan sneered.
Chen Mo pondered. Suddenly, he leaned close to Chen Luan’s ear. His manly scent poured from her ear throughout her entire body.
Chen Luan’s cheeks showed a girl’s slightly blushing attitude, but she still maintained a tough expression.
“I’m going outside for a moment, help cover for me.”
“En, I need to go to the bathroom.” Chen Mo chuckled, holding his stomach.
Chen Luan blushed even more furiously. If it was not for the banquet, she truly wanted to kick him. Just go to the latrine then, I thought you wanted to do something when you leaned that close. “Hurry up and go, soon, you’ll be even more brilliant.”
The night was deep, the starry sky twinkling.
Gu Wuyi and Mu walked through the palace. Supervisor Yin and four of the Vermilion Bird Imperial Guard were currently leading them. Gradually, the place they walked to was more and more isolated. They completely were unable to feel the slightest tumult of a banquet.
“Supervisor, have you taken a wrong turn?” Mu said.
“We shall soon arrive.” Supervisor Yin slightly smiled.
Walking past several gates, they reached an open arena. Rows of willow trees were planted in the surroundings, swaying under the night wind.
A silver-armored girl stood in the darkness. In her hands was a spear more dazzling than snow and frost.
“This dynasty has a Highness who wishes to see you, Great Master Wuyi.” Supervisor Yin lowered his head. “Your Highness, Great Master Wuyi has arrived.”
The girl spun around, her complexion earth-shattering. Her skin was white as snow, and her face had seven star birthmarks.
Gu Wuyi slightly creased her brow.
“The rest of you roll away.” The girl was ice-cold. The Vermilion Bird Imperial Guard and Supervisor Yin immediately left this place.
Just at this moment, the girl’s figure moved. A thin ray of silver light drew a shocking line, ripping apart the darkness, directly attack Gu Wuyi.
Mu brandished his great sword to block it. He was instantly defeated by this silver light, sent flying far away. He hurt too much to move.
The silver light was none other than that silver spear in the girl’s hand.
Cold Night Locked Moon!
“Earthly Attacking Star ‘Seven Stars’ Huan Wen3 wants to experience Your Distinguished Self’s School Of Mind!!”
The girl put on a big smile.
“Please enlighten me!!”