Addicted to a Lazy Life
Being excessively lazy can be harmful to one's health. The Chinese people found this to be the case at least about two thousand years ago. They even incorporated an idiom into their language to support their hypothesis.
Today, I'll tell you an idiom that can be used to describe those who are addicted to a lazy life. In Chinese it is “Hao Yi Wu Lao” and, literally translated, it means to love ease and comfort, but to hate work. So, here is the story behind it.
In the Eastern Han Dynasty, there was a doctor named Guo Yu. Through his outstanding ability in acupuncture, he cured many of his patients' illnesses. He was particularly popular amongst the ordinary people, as he tried his very best to treat them and succeeded in helping most to recover from their diseases.
But he didn't enjoy quite such a high reputation amongst the nobility as most of them found Guo Yu unable to treat their illnesses. Curious about the differences in Guo Yu's treatment of ordinary and powerful people, the emperor decided to try an experiment on the doctor. He told one of his concubines, who was ill at the time, to dress like an common woman before going to see doctor Guo Yu. The sick concubine did as she was told, and was cured by Guo Yu after a single acupuncture treatment.
This result confirmed the emperor's suspicions. He therefore went to Guo Yu to ask why there was such a difference. The doctor answered, “ Acupuncture requires a high degree of skill in finding the correct position for the needle. When I am faced with a patient of high social status, I become very nervous. I can't treat them in the same way I would an ordinary patient. At the same time, they usually live extremely lazy lives, and this also hinders their recovery. ” The emperor could do nothing but nod in reply.
People then derived the idiom “Hao Yi Wu Lao” from the description the doctor used for the slothful nobility. “Hao Yi Wu Lao” literally means to love ease and comfort, but to hate work and can be used for all those who lead a lazy life. If parents want to warn their children against laziness, therefore, they will often resort to this idiom.