"I heard Chieh Yü utter something unjustifiably extravagant and without either rhyme or reason.
- This was an individual, named Lu T'ung, who feigned madness in order to escape an official career. For his interview with Confucius, see ch. iv, ad fin.
I was greatly startled at what he said, for it seemed to me boundless as the Milky Way, though very improbable and removed from the experiences of mortals."
"What was it?" asked Lien Shu.
"He declared," replied Chien Wu, "that on the Miao-ku-shê mountain
- Which is as fabulous as the story.
there lives a divine man whose flesh is like ice or snow, whose demeanour is that of a virgin, who eats no fruit of the earth, but lives on air and dew, and who, riding on clouds with flying dragons for his team, roams beyond the limits of mortality. This being is absolutely inert. Yet he wards off corruption from all things, and causes the crops to thrive. Now I call that nonsense, and do not believe it."
"Well," answered Lien Shu, "you don't ask a blind man's opinion of a picture, nor do you invite a deaf man to a concert. And blindness and deafness are not physical only. There is blindness and deafness of the mind, diseases from which I fear you yourself are suffering. The good influence of that man fills all creation. Yet because a