From past to present all is but talk, and all talk is but laughs. The birth of yin and yang from the original chaos, the voluntary abdication and forceful overthrow of the sage kings-who's ever witnessed this sort of thing? It's nothing more than talk. Future generations will talk about our generation, just as our generation talks about past generations. To talk about something and doubt it is laughable; to talk about something and believe it is even more laughable. Classics, philosophy, and histories are nonsensical talk, and people compete to transmit them. Poetry, rhapsody, and prose are preposterous talk, and people compete to perfect them. Praise or sneer, advocacy or suppression-these are whimsical talk, and people compete to respond to them. Sometimes we laugh at others; some other times we are laughed at. Those who laugh at others are in turn laughed at by others. The Treasury of Laughs is a collection of jokes. With all its thirteen chapters, some may still say it's a thin book. If you read it and are delighted by it, please don't be. If you read it and are enraged by it, please don't be. The world from past to present is an immense treasury of laughs; you and I are all in there as laughingstocks. Without talk there're no human beings. Without laughs there's no talk. Without laughs and talk there's no world. Cloth-Sack Monk, you're my master, you're my master!

The text of this article is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.