我的世界观 The World as I See It

2019年11月14日 英语美文 暂无评论



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How strange is the lot of us mortals! Each of us is here for a brief sojourn; for what purpose he knows not, though he sometimes thinks he senses it. But without deeper reflection one knows from daily life that one exists for other people—first of all for those upon whose smiles and well-being our own happiness is wholly dependent, and then for the many, unknown to us, to whose destinies we are bound by the ties of sympathy. A hundred times every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life are based on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving. I am strongly drawn to a frugal life and am often oppressively aware that I am engrossing an undue amount of the labor of my fellowmen. I regard class distinctions as unjustified and, in the last resort, based on force. I also believe that a simple and unassuming life is good for everybody, physically and mentally.
I do not at all believe in human freedom in the philosophical sense. Everybody acts not only under external compulsion but also in accordance with inner necessity. Schopenhauer’s saying, “A man can do what he wants, but not want what he wants,” has been a very real inspiration to me since my youth; it has been a continual consolation in the face of life’s hardships, my own and others’, and an unfailing wellspring of tolerance. This realization mercifully mitigates the easily paralyzing sense of responsibility and prevents us from taking ourselves and other people all too seriously; it is conducive to a view of life which, in particular, gives humor its due.
To inquire after the meaning or object of one’s own existence or that of all creatures has always seemed to me absurd from an objective point of view. And yet everybody has certain ideals which determine the direction of his endeavors and his judgments. In this sense I have never looked upon ease and happiness as ends in themselves—this ethical basis I call the ideal of a pigsty. The ideals which have lighted my way, and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Kindness, Beauty, and Truth. Without the sense of kinship with men of like mind, without the occupation with the objective world, the eternally unattainable in the field of art and scientific endeavors, life would have seemed to me empty. The trite objects of human efforts—possessions, outward success, luxury—have always seemed to me contemptible.
My passionate sense of social justice and social responsibility has always contrasted oddly with my pronounced lack of need for direct contact with other human beings and human communities. I am truly a “lone traveler” and have never belonged to my country, my home, my friend, or even my immediate family, with my whole heart; in the face of all these ties, I have never lost a sense of distance and a need for solitude-feelings which increase with the years. One becomes sharply aware, but without regret, of the limits of mutual understanding and consonance with other people. No doubt, such a person loses some of his innocence and unconcern; on the other hand, he is largely independent, of the opinions, habits, and judgments of his fellows and avoids the temptation to build his inner equilibrium upon such insecure foundations.
The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. Whoever does not know it and can no longer wonder, no longer marvel, is as good as dead, and his eyes are dimmed. It was the experience of mystery—even if mixed with fear—that engendered religion. A knowledge of the existence of something we cannot penetrate, our perceptions of the profoundest reason and the most radiant beauty, which only in their most primitive forms are accessible to our minds—it is this knowledge and this emotion that constitute true religiosity; in this sense, and in this alone, I am a deeply religious man. I cannot conceive of a God who rewards and punishes his creatures, or has a will of the kind that we experience in ourselves. Neither can I nor would I want to conceive of an individual that survives his physical death; let feeble souls, from fear or absurd egoism, cherish such thoughts. I am satisfied with the mystery of the eternity of life and with the awareness and a glimpse of the marvelous structure of the existing world, together with the devoted striving to comprehend a portion, be it ever so tiny, of the Reason that manifests itself in nature.
人类所能享有的最美妙的体验就是神秘感,这是真正的科学与艺术的根源中最基础的情感。无论是谁,如果没有感受过它的魅力,如果不再感到好奇,不再发出惊叹,他就无异于行尸走肉,瞎眼盲心。正是这种神秘的体验——即使夹杂着恐惧——促进了宗教的产生。我们知道有某种事物的存在我们无法参透,我们对最深刻的理性与最绚丽的美的感知,只有在它们以最原始的形式出现时才能有所理解——正是这种认知和情感构成了真正的宗教信仰。在这种意义上,也只有在这种意义上,我是一个笃信宗教的人。我无法臆想出一个对自己创造出来的生命加以奖赏和惩罚的上帝,也无法想象他会拥有我们自身所拥有的意志。我无法也不愿想象一个人在肉体死去之后仍然可以活着。让那些脆弱的灵魂,出于恐惧或者可笑的私利,去拥抱这种想法吧。我满足于对生命的永恒保持神秘感,满足于对现存世界神奇结构的粗浅感知和匆匆一瞥,也满足于通过不懈的努力,对自然本身显露出的一部分“道”进行理解,哪怕只是极其微小的一部分。 美文网