Companionship of Books(以书为伴)


Companionship of Books (excerpt) By Samuel Smiles A man may usually be known by the books he reads as well as by the company he keeps; for there is a companionship of books as well as of men; and one should always live in the best company, whether it be of books or of men. A good book may be among the best of friends. It is the same today that it always was, and it will never change. It is the most patient and cheerful of companions. It does not turn its back upon us in times of adversity or distress. It always receives us with the same kindness; amusing and instructing us in youth, and comforting and consoling us in age. Men often discover their affinity to each other by the mutual love they have for a book just as two persons sometimes discover a friend by the admiration which both entertain for a third. There is an old proverb, ”Love me, love my dog.” But there is more wisdom in this, ”Love me, love my book.” The book is a truer and higher bond of union. Men can think, feel, and sympathize with each other through their favorite author. They live in him together, and he in them. A good book is often the best urn of a life enshrining the best that life could think out; for the world of a man’s life is, for the most part, but the world of his thoughts. Thus the best books are treasuries of good words, the golden thoughts, which, remembered and cherished, become our constant companions and comforters. Books possess an essence of immortality. They are by far the most lasting products of human effort. Temples and statues decay, but books survive. Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh today as when they first passed through their author’s minds, ages ago. What was then said and thought still speaks to us as vividly as ever from the printed page. The only effect of time have been to sift out the bad products; for nothing in literature can long survive but what is really good. 以书为伴(节选) 作者:塞缪尔·斯迈尔斯 通常看一个人读些什么书就可知道他的为人,就像看他同什么人交往就可知道他的为人一样,因为有人以人为伴,也有人以书为伴。无论是书友还是朋友,我们都应该以最好的为伴。 好书就像是你最好的朋友。它始终不渝,过去如此,现在如此,将来也永远不变。它是最有耐心,最令人愉悦的伴侣。在我们穷愁潦倒,临危遭难时,它也不会抛弃我们,对我们总是一如既往地亲切。在我们年轻时,好书陶冶我们的性情,增长我们的知识;到我们年老时,它又给我们以慰藉和勉励。 人们常常因为喜欢同一本书而结为知已,就像有时两个人因为敬慕同一个人而成为朋友一样。有句古谚说道:“爱屋及乌。”其实“爱我及书”这句话蕴涵更多的哲理。书是更为真诚而高尚的情谊纽带。人们可以通过共同喜爱的作家沟通思想,交流感情,彼此息息相通,并与自己喜欢的作家思想相通,情感相融。 好书常如最精美的宝器,珍藏着人生的思想的精华,因为人生的境界主要就在于其思想的境界。因此,最好的书是金玉良言和崇高思想的宝库,这些良言和思想若铭记于心并多加珍视,就会成为我们忠实的伴侣和永恒的慰藉。 书籍具有不朽的本质,是为人类努力创造的最为持久的成果。寺庙会倒坍,神像会朽烂,而书却经久长存。对于伟大的思想来说,时间是无关紧要的。多年前初次闪现于作者脑海的伟大思想今日依然清新如故, 透过书页向我们娓娓道来。时间惟一的作用是淘汰不好的作品,因为只有真正的佳作才能经世长存。 作品简介: 塞缪尔·斯迈尔斯(1812-1904),19世纪英国著名作家,成功学开山鼻祖,也是著名的社会改革家,被誉为催人奋发向上的“人类精神导师”、“励志和自助之父”。他的一生阅历十分丰富,为他观察人性的优劣、观察人生成败得失的原因、为他以后的创作,打下了非常坚实的功底。塞缪尔·斯迈尔斯一生写过20多部著作,其中最受人喜爱的是有关人生成功与幸福,有关良知、信仰、道德、自由与责任等领域的随笔作品,本文即是其中之一。 朗读者介绍: 肖晓燕博士,厦门大学外文学院教授。多次赴美国、英国、爱尔兰、奥地利等地访学讲学。研究方向为英汉口译及手语翻译,曾为多部宣传片担任英文配音。