Youth青春-塞缪尔·厄尔曼

青春不是年华,而是心境;青春不是桃面、红唇、柔膝,而是坚强的意志、恢宏的想象、炽热的感情;青春是生命深泉的自在涌流。

青春气贯长虹,勇锐盖过怯弱,进取压倒苟安。如此锐气,二十后生有之,六旬男子则更多见。年岁有加,并非垂老;理想丢弃,方堕暮年。

岁月悠悠,衰微只及肌肤;热忱抛却,颓废必致灵魂。忧烦、惶恐、丧失自信,定使心灵扭曲,意气如灰。

无论年届花甲,抑或二八芳龄,心中皆有生命之欢乐,好奇之冲动,孩童般天真久盛不衰。

你我心中都有一台天线,只要你从天上、人间接受美好、希望、欢乐、勇气和力量的信号,你就会青春永驻,风华常存。

一旦天线坠下,锐气便被冰雪覆盖,玩世不恭、自暴自弃油然而生,即使年方二十,实则垂垂老矣;然而只要竖起天线,捕捉乐观信号,即使八十高龄,行将告别尘寰,你也会觉得年轻依旧,希望永存。

下面是英文版本的原文:

YOUTH - Samuel Ullman

Youth is not a time of life; it is astateof mind; it is not a matter of rosy cheeks, red lips and supple knees; itis amatter of the will, a quality of the imagination, a vigor of the emotions;itis the freshness of the deep springs of life.

Youth means a tempera-mental predominanceofcourage over timidity, of the appetite for adventure over the love of ease.Thisoften exists in a man of 60 more than a boy of 20. Nobody grows old merelyby anumber of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals.

Years may wrinkle the skin, but to giveupenthusiasm wrinkles the soul. Worry, fear, self-distrust bows the heartandturns the spring back to dust.

Whether 60 or 16, there is in everyhumanbeing’s heart the lure of wonder, the unfailing childlike appetite of what’snextand the joy of the game of living.

In the center of your heart and myheartthere is a wireless station: so long as it receives messages of beauty,hope,cheer, courage and power from men and from the Infinite, so long are youyoung.

When the aerials are down, and yourspiritis covered with snows of cynicism and the ice of pessimism, then you aregrownold, even at 20, but as long as your aerials are up, to catch wavesofoptimism, there is hope you may die young at 80.

《青春》的作者塞缪尔·厄尔曼是位犹太人,1840年生于德国,儿时随家西渡,移居美国,年逾70开始写作。他以教育家和社会活动家而闻名,在文学创作方面也很有才华。二战期间,太平洋战争打得正酣,麦克阿瑟将军常常从繁忙中抬起头,注视着挂在墙上的镜框,镜框里正是篇文章,塞缪尔·厄尔曼的《青春》。后来,日本人在东京的美军总部发现了它,《青春》便开始在日本流传。

1988年,日本数百名流聚会东京,纪念厄尔曼的这篇文章。松下公司元老松下幸之助感慨地说:“20年来,《青春》与我朝夕相伴,它是我的座右铭。”

欧洲一位政界名宿也极力推荐:“无论男女老幼,要想活得风光,就得拜读《青春》。”