Governors in search of eternal life

The epos about Gilgameshe speaks about the flower bearing immortality. “Mahabharata”, the epos of Ancient India, mentions the juice of some tree prolonging human life till 10 000 years. Ancient Greek historians Megasfen and Strabon mention it too. And Elian, the Roman author living in the II-III centuries tells about trees which fruits are capable to return allegedly lost youth. Other ancient texts persistently speak about some “water of eternal life”. This tradition existed also at the African people, and at the people of America, and at Slavs in the form of legends about “water of life”. The Russian bylinas place a source of water of life on the island the Brawler who costs in the middle of the ocean. Inhabitants of ocean open spaces looked for a source of the water giving eternal life in the regions lying for “it is a lot of days of traveling”. In the same way if residents of the countries, neighboring to China, placed such source of water of life in China, then Chinese, following the same logic, moved off in its searches anywhere, but only as it is possible further, out of borders of the country. One of such expeditions is connected with a name of the Chinese emperor Qin Shihuangdi (259 – 210 BC) . It was the emperor who united the country and began construction of the Great Wall. The wall protected the country from nomads, and the emperor – from the military alarms which were so weighing it predecessors. But one cares are always succeeded by others. 0 with what the emperor was anxious, other governors did not dare even to think: Qin Shihuangdi decided to live forever. And he did not feel sorry for either time, or efforts to find a way which would lead it to this purpose. … Nobody the stranger could get to the Forbidden city where there was a residence of the emperor. Curious, dared to approach gate too close, the guards zarubat on the place. Even the birds who were carelessly trying to fly via the channel to the imperial residence, archers forced down on the fly long red arrows. That measure was not superfluous – the evil ghost or the werewolf could accept shape of a bird to get closer to the person of the emperor and to do it harm. Was considered that evil spirits can move only directly or turn at right angle. Therefore all entrances to the Forbidden city, all transitions in the palace and footpaths in imperial park were laid so that there were no straight lines anywhere. Even edges of a palace roof that evil spirits could not move ahead along them were curved. But, despite all these measures and all bans, there was one terrible guest whom nothing could stop. Both the emperor every day and each hour remembered it. In vain Qin Shihuangdi talked about it to the cleverest people of the state. They were tempted in achievement and deduction of the power, in warfare or taxation, but any of them could not tell the master how to overcome the nature and to avoid death. Then the emperor retired to distant rooms of the palace and began to talk to those who were not among live long ago, looking for the answer in ancient books and manuscripts. “Speak, – one ancient author wrote, – that in the middle of East sea there are three unusual islands. They are not so far from the places lived by people, but, unfortunately, hardly somebody tries to stick to them as wind which carries the boat far away rises. If tell the truth, then in ancient times there were people who managed to reach these islands, On these islands there live immortal and there is a structure which preserves against death. All live there, even birds and animals, white color”. On one of these islands, approved the legend, the source of wine of color of nephrite beats. Drunk this wine will find immortality. When Qin Shihuangdi ended reading, he understood that it is a destiny sign. From the same day under the imperial order construction of two tens big ships by which it was possible to risk to put out to sea was begun. But nobody, any citizen, any confidant or the emperor’s minister, knew about the purpose for the sake of which this unknown flotilla was constructed. However the further construction progressed, the bigger doubt covered the emperor. May he leave the palace and the Forbidden city, without risking to lose the empire? Hardly a flotilla under sails from yellow silk – he is familiar that by one of the ships there is an emperor, – will be behind the horizon as in the capital mutiny will break out. And from the remote provinces to the Forbidden city infinite hordes of the applicants hurrying to occupy rather the throne which became empty for a while will move. The emperor knew that he will be quite so, and it forced it to look for all new and new occasions to delay completion of construction. That was not pleasant to it the room for suite, and carpenters had to reconstruct all over again. That the dragons who decorated nasal part of the ships were not such with what the emperor imagined them, and he ordered to execute woodcarvers. But all the same construction continued, and sooner or later there had to come day when the emperor needed to make the decision. Therefore this application which is respectfully transferred to it by the chief inspector of office when construction approached already the end was so useful. Subject, the certain person unknown to the emperor by the name of Su She, dropped to high feet of the master. “We beg, – he wrote, – that allowed us, having passed due clarification, to move off with young men and girls in searches of islands of immortality”. The emperor was convinced that the destiny once again heard his thoughts. In the intended day all twenty ships were floated. Under light sounds of the flutes clearing of an evil eye and evil thoughts, oarsmen undertook oars, and a flotilla, carrying three thousand young men and girls, and also a large number of various workers, servants and workmen, went towards East sea. Long days, weeks, at last, passed months. From Su She no messages arrived. The emperor spent many hours ashore, peering at not clear horizon. But the ships did not return. “SU of She went to swimming, – the Chinese historian wrote about the final of this expedition, – it opened lands, remarkable the peacefulness and fertility. There he lodged, became the king and did not return back”. When it became clear that SU of She and his people will not come back, the emperor began to look for other ways to immortality. Over all country his messengers searched for the people involved in knowledge ancient, the highest wisdom and magic. It had especially a kind feeling for Taoist monks – whom as not to them, this secret has to be revealed! The emperor had the reasons to think so. In Ancient China many believed that Taoist monks jealously keep secret of the certain “pills of immortality” able allegedly beyond all bounds to prolong human life. The texts mentioning it reached and up to now. But any does not report about structure of pills. Only in one source it is deafly said that “eight precious components” in addition are a part them. The way of production of “immortality pills” is long and was difficult: “The sun, the moon and stars have to finish seven times the circle, and four a season nine times have to return. You have to wash out structure until it becomes white and to force down until it turns in red, – then you will receive an elixir which spares you life lasting ten thousand eras”. By order of Qin Shihuangdi in the depth of the palace apartments in which strange, silent people lodged were taken away. They had to produce for the emperor one to them the conducted structures and secret medicines. Each, latest citizen knew that the emperor enjoined to make to the wisest people so that he lived forever. In the empire there was no person who would not know that the will of their master is sacred. And that at anybody of citizens – from the shepherd to the highest dignitary – the doubt in justice of this thought did not arise, Qin Shihuangdi everything for many years the reign ruthlessly betrayed executions of those who thought differently. That is why, when in the foreordained hour the emperor after all died, his citizens and courtiers appeared before a hard dilemma: what to consider more important – whether sacred will of the emperor who wished to live forever, or the insignificant fact which they had before eyes. However, fluctuations were short. The emperor is decided to be considered live. His body was set up on a throne, and from there, because of a screen, it gave many days silent audiences to dignitaries, deputies of provinces and diplomats. In total same silent and motionless, sitting on a throne, the emperor made a trip over the country, and only on an end of month, overcoming fear and doubts, confidants decided to inter what was once their emperor. So narrate chronicles. Neither Qin Shihuangdi, nor the expedition sent them found water of eternal life. Later, in the next centuries, the travelers from Celestial Empire empires occupied with searches of a source of eternal life quite often it was possible to see in other countries.

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