Meditation

Meditation XVII   by John Donne

沉思錄

 

( The poet, confined to his bed with a serious illness, hears the bells of the church adjoining, and is thereby reminded of death and the transiency of human life.)

 

(詩人因為重疾臥病在床,聽到附近教堂喪鐘聲,因此聯想到死亡及生命的短暫。)

 

Perchance he for whom this bell tolls may be so ill, as that he knows not it tolls for him; and perchance I may think myself so much better than I am, as that they who are about me, and see my state, may have caused it to toll for me, and I know not that.

 

也許這喪鐘為他而敲的的人病勢沈重,以致不知此喪鐘為他而敲。也許我認為自己的病狀尚未如此惡化,以致我週遭的人,目睹我病入膏肓,為我敲起喪鐘,而我自己猶不自覺。

 

The church is catholic, universal, so are all her actions; all that she does belongs to all. When she baptizes a child, that action concerns me; for that child is thereby connected to that head which is my head too, and ingrafted into that body whereof I am a member.

 

教堂汎愛眾生,普及寰宇,其行為亦是如此,她所表現萬物莫不歸屬。教堂為小孩行浸信禮時,我亦有榮焉,因為小孩從此以後所屬之靈,亦是我所屬之靈,嵌

入他的肉身,猶如我參與其中。

 

And when she buries a man, that action concerns me; all mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated; God employs several translators; some pieces are translated by age, some by sickness. Some by war, some by justice; but God’s hand is in every translation, and his hand shall bind up all our scattered leaves again for that library where every book shall like open to one another.

 

教堂行葬禮時,那個行為與我息息相關,因為所有人類均為同一作者所創作,同在一本書之內。有人死亡,不是書本被撕掉一個章節,而是被翻譯成為更好的語言。每個章節均是如此翻譯。上帝使用各種翻譯方法,有些人因為衰老而被翻譯,有些因為疾病,有些因為戰爭,還有些因為司法判決。但是不論哪一種翻譯,上帝都參與其事。上帝親手將零散的頁冊重新整編成圖書館,在哪裡每本書歷歷在目地互相攤開。

 

As therefore the bell that rings to a sermon calls not upon the preacher only, but upon the congregation to come, so this bell calls us all; but how much more me, who are brought so near the door by this sickness. There was a contention as far as a suit ( in which both piety and dignity, religion and estimation, were mingled ), which of the religious orders should ring to prayers first in the morning; and it was determined, that they should ring first that rose earliest.

 

因此,傳道時敲響的鐘聲,不僅是召喚牧師,也是召喚會眾前來。所以鐘聲召喚我們大家,只是我因為疾病,距離死亡之門如此接近,更覺是為我而敲。

 

If we understand aright the dignity of this bell that tolls for our evening prayer, we would be glad to make it ours by rising early, in that application, that it might be ours as well as his, whose indeed it is. The bell does toll for him that thinks it does; and though it intermit again, yet from that minute that that occasion wrought upon him, he is united to Gold.

 

假如我們真的了解晚間祈禱響鐘的威嚴,我們當會在身歷其境時,很樂意視鐘聲為我們而敲,因而早起。因為鐘聲固然可能為他而敲,無可置疑,也可能為我們而敲,鐘聲確實是為了有自覺意識的人而敲。雖然期間有所中斷,從有自覺意識的那一時刻開始,他就與上帝結合相會。

 

Who casts not up his eyes to the sun when it rises? But who takes off his eyes from a comet when that breaks out? Who bends not his ear to any bell which upon any occasion rings? But who can remove it from that bell which is passing a piece of himself, out of this world!

 

當太陽上升時,誰能不仰首張望?可是當彗星隕落,誰會忍心掉首不顧?當其他場合鐘聲響起,誰不側耳傾聽?可是當喪鐘意味著我們歸屬的世界將減少一部份時,誰能冷漠地置若罔聞?

 

No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. It a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of the friend’s or of thine own were: any man’s death diminished me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

 

沒有人是島嶼,完全獨立;每個人都是大陸的一塊,整體的一部份。假如有一小塊被海水沖走,歐洲將因此而減少一塊,好像海岬少了一塊,或是你我朋友的田地減少了一塊。任何人的死亡都讓我若有所失,因為我參與整個人類的命運,因此不會袖手旁觀喪鐘為誰而響?喪鐘為你我而響!

 

Neither can we call this a begging of misery, or a borrowing of misery, as though we were not miserable enough of ourselves, but must fetch in more from the next house, in taking upon us the misery of our neighbors. Truly it were an excusable covetousness if we did, for affliction is a treasure, and scarce any man hath enough of it.

 

我們也不要稱這個叫訴諸悲慘,或濫情悲慘,好像我們自己還不夠悲慘似的,還要將隔壁房屋併入計算,將鄰居的悲慘攔在我們身上。的確,真的要這樣做,也沒有人會怪你貪得無饜,畢竟痛苦就像財寶,沒有幾個人會嫌其多多益善。

 

No man hath affliction enough that is not matured and ripened by it, and made fit for God by that affliction. If a man carry treasure in bullion, or in a wedge of gold, and have none coined into current money, his treasure will defray him as he travels. Tribulation is a treasure in the nature of it, but it is not current money in the use of it, except we get nearer and nearer our home, Heaven , by it.

 

人遭受的痛苦夠多,自然會因此而變得成熟而圓融,更因為痛苦而受上帝垂憐。

可是,假如一個人空有銀磚或金塊,卻沒有將他們鎔鑄成目前的貨幣,他的寶藏在人生之旅中將無法運用。苦難本身是財寶,但並非可以通用的貨幣,除非我們藉著它更加接近我們天堂的家園。

 

Another man may be sick too, and sick to death, and this affliction may lie in his bowels, as gold in a mine, and be of no use to him; but this bell, that tells me of his affliction, digs out and applies that gold to me: if by this consideration of another’s danger I take mine own into contemplation, and so secure myself, by making my recourse to my God, who is our only security.

 

別人可能也生病,正彌留死亡,這個痛苦正潛藏其內臟,猶如黃金潛藏礦坑,對他並無絲毫用途。但此喪鐘告訴我他的痛苦,將黃金挖掘出來,施用到我身上。假如考慮到別人垂危之際,我沉思到我自己的垂危,以求助於我們唯一的庇護,上帝,因而得的我的平安。

 

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