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综合英语第六册 Uint 16 Text 1 Friendship 中英对照

(2011-07-02 22:18:07)




分类: 我的大学



Ralph Waldo Emerson

We have a great deal more kindness than is ever spoken. Maugre all the selfishness that chills east winds the world, the whole human family is bathed with an element of love like a fine ether. How many persons we meet in houses, whom we scarcely speak to, whom yet we honor and who honor us! How many we see in the street, or sit with in church, whom, though silently, we warmly rejoice to be with! Read the language of these wandering eye-beams. The heart knoweth.

The effect of the indulgence of this human affection is a certain cordial exhilaration. In poetry, and in common speech, the emotion of benevolence and complacency which are felt towards others are likened to the material effects of fire; so swift, or much swift, more active, more cheering, are those fine inward irradiation. From the highest degree of passionate love, to the lowest degree of goodwill, they make sweetness of life.

Our intellectual and active powers increase with our affection. The scholar sits down to write, and all his years of meditation do not furnish him with one god thought or happy expression;but it is necessary to write a letter to a friend—and forthwith troops of gentle thought invest themselves, on every hand, with chosen words.

See, in any house where virtue and self-respect abide, the palpitation which the approach of a stranger causes. A commended stranger is expected and announced, and uneasiness betwixt pleasure and pain invades all the hearts of a household. His arrival almost brings fear to the good hearts that would welcome him. The house is dusted, all things fly into their places, the old coat is exchanged to the new, and they must get up a dinner if they can. Of a commended stranger, only the good report is told by others, only the good and new by us. He stands to us humanity. He is what we wish. Having imagined and invested him, we ask how we should stand related in conversation and action with such a man, and are uneasy with fear. The same idea exalts conversation with him. We talk better than we are wont. We have the nimblest fancy, a rich memory, and out of dumb devil have taken leave for the time. For long hours we can continue a series of sincere, graceful, rich communication, drawn from the oldest secretest experience, so that they who sit by, of our own kinsfolk and acquaintance, shall feel a lively surprise at our unusual powers. But as soon as the stranger begins to intrude his partialities, his definitions, his defects, into the conversation, it is all over. He has heard the first. The last and best he will ever hear from us. He is no more stranger now. Vulgarity, ignorance, misapprehension are old acquaintances. Now, when he comes, he may get the order, the dress, and the dinner,--but the throbbing of the heart, and the communications of the soul, no more.

What is so pleasant as these jets of affection which make a young world for me again? What so delicious as a just and firm encounter of two, in a thought, in a feeling? How beautiful, on their approach to this beating heart, the steps and forms of the gifted and true! The moment we indulge our affections, the earth is metamorphosed; there is no winter, and no night; all tragedies, all ennuis, vanish,--all duties even; nothing fills the proceeding eternity but the forms all radiant of beloved persons. Let the soul be assured that somewhere in the universe it should rejoin it friend, and it would be content and cheerful alone for a thousand years.

I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and the new. Shall I not call God the beautiful, who daily showeth himself so to me in his gifts? I chide society. I embrace solitude, and yet I am not so ungrateful as not to see the wise, the lovely, and the noble-minded, as from time to time they pass my gate. Who hears me, who understands me, becomes mine, a possession for all the time. Nor is nature so poor but she gives me this joy several times, and thus we weave social threads of our own, a new web of relation; and as many thoughts in succession substantiate themselves, we shall by and by stand in a new world of our creation, and no longer strangers and pilgrims in a traditionary globe.











注】拉尔夫/瓦尔多’爱默生(1803----1882),美国哲学家,诗人。醉心于德国唯心派哲学,接受超验主义观点,这些能在他的散文《论自然》中发现表达。正好和英国的罗素相反,罗素,一个哲学家,写的作品具有“文学味”;而爱默生是一个文学家,至少是散文家,写出的作品却有“哲学味”,----由于他的写作建立在思辨的天空而不是经验的大地,难免有些句子会晦涩难懂。我翻译起来也常常很吃力,比如有些词儿像maugre,knoweth之类,不知为何要这么用。还有行文有时也啰嗦,比如我不知道第三段为什么写这么长,是生怕人们不懂要表达的曲折吗?反正我在打字为您收录这英文稿时不如毛姆那篇《论阅读》舒心,虽然篇幅这篇比那篇要短。但爱默生的很多专有名词是有深意的,绝不是简单字面的理解,像朝圣者(pilgrims)和传统(traditionary globe)是有所指的,和他召唤美国创造新世界有关。他无愧于一个美国哲学家,“精神之父”。美国的文化之树就是在爱默生思想的沃土上成长起来的。


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