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Perfect Memento in Strict Sense/Hermits

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ちょっと変わった人間 Somewhat Peculiar Humans
仙人 Hermits[1]
主な危険度: 極低 Usual threat level: Very low
遭遇頻度: 低 Frequency of encounters: Low
多様性: 普通 Variety: Average
主な遭遇場所: 不明 Places likely to be encountered: Unknown
主な遭遇時間: 不明 Times likely to be encountered: Unknown
特徴 Characteristics
修行を積み、超人的な能力を得た人間。 Training according to the principles of bhāvanā[2], these persons have acquired superhuman-like abilities.
だが、完全に欲を捨てる事は無く、俗界は離れているものの幻想郷の中で暮らしている。 However, they have not completely cast aside all of their worldly desires, rather, they are separated from the drudgeries of needing to work, and now reside in Gensokyo.
歳は百歳~数千歳というほど長寿だが、不老不死ではない。 Their age and longevity may be in the hundreds or even thousands of years, but they are not immortal.
修行を怠るとすぐに体は朽ち果て、灰となって消える。 If they become carelessly negligent in the pursuit of bhāvanā, their bodies will immediately decay into ashes.
妖怪に対して毒である天人と異なり、仙人は妖怪の大好物である。 Unlike celestials, which are poisonous to youkai, hermits are a delicacy to youkai[3].
仙人を喰らうと妖怪としての格が上がる。 A youkai who consumes a hermit may be promoted to a higher rank or ascend to a higher form.
さらに普通の獣でさえ仙人の肉を喰らうと、妖獣に成る事もある。 Furthermore, if an ordinary animal consumes the flesh of a hermit, they will become a beast.
つまり、仙人になると数多の妖怪から狙われる様になる。 In other words, to be a hermit is to become the target of countless youkai.
それだけではなく、仙人には常に災難が多く、その最たる物が百年に一度程の間隔で地獄から刺客が来る事である(*7)。 As if that weren't enough, hermits are always beset by misfortune, the worst of which is that about once every hundred years, an assassin will come from Hell(*7).
この間、少しでも修行を怠ったりして、能力が鈍っていれば追い返す事が出来ずに地獄へ堕ちる。 During this time, if they are even a little careless in their pursuit of bhāvanā, and their powers weaken even a little, they will be unable to repel the threat and will fall into Hell.
仙人として生き続ける事も難しく、ましてや天人に成る事も難しい。 It's difficult to continue living as a hermit, to say nothing of attempting to become a celestial.
そんな種族に成る様な人間は、やはりちょっと変わった人間が多い。 As there are many kinds of humans that make up this group, it can be expected that most of them are a little peculiar.
普段から奇行が目立ち、訳の判らない事を呟きながら、人里を離れて暮らす。 Their everyday habits stand out from the norm, and people who don't understand their situation will mutter hostilities among themselves, eventually leading the hermits to leave from the human village.
だが、仙人同士の繋がりは深く、新たに仙人候補が現れるとすぐに自分の弟子にし、独り立ち出来るまで面倒を見るという(*8)。 However, the bonds of fellowship between hermits is profound, as soon as a new candidate for hermitry appears, he is taken in as a disciple, and in a manner of speaking, will be taken care of until he can stand on his own (*8).
仙人の生活 Everyday Life of Hermits
生活は極めて質素で、必要最低限の食事しか取らない。 Their everyday life is extremely modest and frugal, only eating the absolute minimum amount of food needed to live.
一日、木の実を数個囓る程度で生活出来る(*9)。 On the first day of the month, they will nibble the fruits and nuts from various trees and, in this way, survive (*9).
さらに五百歳を越えると、食事は殆ど不要になり、霞を食べて暮らすという。 Furthermore, upon reaching the age of 500, food of any kind is unnecessary, and simply ingesting fog or haze will be enough.
目が覚めると日の出に向かって真言を何万回も唱え(*10)、昼間に少しだけ自由に出歩くと、日の入りにはまた真言を唱える。 From the moment they wake up, they turn towards the sunrise and will recite sutras countless thousands of times (*10), only briefly during the day will they freely go out, as the sun sets, they will once again be engaged in reciting sutras.
仙人の能力 Abilities of Hermits
妖怪にとって最も魅力的な人間である仙人だが、当然、妖怪に匹敵する力を持っている。 These hermits who are the most alluring of humans to youkai naturally possess comparable levels of power.
また、妖怪退治を生業とする者がそのまま仙人となる場合も多い。 Also, there are many situations of youkai exterminators who, in the course of their work, became hermits.
肉体は老体の為、非常に脆く見えるが、自前の丹を服用している場合が多く、鋼より硬く出来ると言われる。 Because their physical bodies are aged, they may appear to be extremely fragile or vulnerable, but there are many of them take care of themselves with natural cures, and it is said that their bodies are tougher than steel.
その上、様々な妖術を身に付けている。 Furthermore, they are able to learn various kinds of sorcery.
人間に危険が迫っているのを見ると、すぐに助けてくれる親切な面も見せてくれる。 If they see something dangerous approaching a human, they will immediately come to the aid of the person and will display the utmost kindness.
*7 生きるだけで罪を負う。長寿であればあるほど罪は大きい為、その分功徳も積まなければいけない。 7: The simple act of living is a sin. As the weight of that sin is as great as the lifespan, it is necessary to perform pious acts to compensate for them.
*8 雑用を任せる為とも言う。 8: They are also entrusted with miscellaneous tasks.
*9 栗鼠の様に。 9: Like squirrels.
*10 転読という方法を使う。 10: They will use reading techniques that rotate the sutras to be recited.
  1. Translators' Note: "Hermit" is a terribly inadequate English equivalent for "仙人" (Sennin), the definition explained in this article below is far more accurate and is more or less what any Chinese or Japanese person will think of when they see the term "仙人". A more accurate though cumbersome definition of "仙人" would be "Cloistered Mystical Taoist Pious Mountain Wizards".
  2. Bhāvanā (修行, Shugyou) as it is used here refers to a Buddhist prescription for behavior that these "hermits" follow that involves casting away material possessions and worldly appetites to pursue enlightenment.
  3. Translators' Note: cf. Wikipedia:Xuanzang (fictional character)


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