光荣的荆棘路

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所属分类:民间故事

从前有一个古老的故事:“光荣的荆棘路:一个叫做布鲁德的猎人得到了无上的光荣和尊严,但是他却长时期遇到极大的困难和冒着生命的危险。”我们大多数的人在小时已经听到过这个故事,可能后来还读到过它,并且也想起自己没有被人歌诵过的“荆棘路”和“极大的困难”。故事和真事没有什么很大的分界线。不过故事在我们这个世界里经常有一个愉快的结尾,而真事常常在今生没有结果,只好等到永恒的未来。

世界的历史象一个幻灯。它在现代的黑暗背景上,放映出明朗的片子,说明那些造福人类的善人和天才的殉道者在怎样走着荆棘路。

这些光耀的图片把各个时代,各个国家都反映给我们看。每张片子只映几秒钟,但是它却代表整个的一生——充满了斗争和胜利的一生。我们现在来看看这些殉道者行列中的人吧——除非这个世界本身遭到灭亡,这个行列是永远没有穷尽的。

我们现在来看看一个挤满了观众的圆形剧场吧。讽刺和幽默的语言象潮水一般地从阿里斯托芬①的“云”喷射出来。雅典最了不起的一个人物,在人身和精神方面,都受到了舞台上的嘲笑。他是保护人民反抗“三十僭主”②的战士。他名叫苏格拉底③,他在混战中救援了阿尔西比亚得和生诺风,他的天才超过了古代的神仙。他本人就在场。他从观众的凳子上站起来,走到前面去,让那些正在哄堂大笑的人可以看看,他本人和戏台上嘲笑的那个对象究竟有什么相同之点。他站在他们面前,高高地站在他们面前。

你,多汁的,绿色的毒胡萝卜,雅典的阴影不是橄榄树而是你④!

七个城市国家⑤在彼此争辩,都说荷马是在自己城里出生的——这也就是说,在荷马死了以后!请看看他活着的时候吧!他在这些城市里流浪,靠朗诵自己的诗篇过日子。他一想起明天的生活,他的头发就变得灰白起来。他,这个伟大的先知者,是一个孤独的瞎子。锐利的荆棘把这位诗中圣哲的衣服撕得稀烂。

但是他的歌仍然是活着的;通过这些歌,古代的英雄和神仙也获得了生命。

图画一幅接着一幅地从日出之国,从日落之国现出来。这些国家在空间和时间方面彼此的距离很远,然而它们却有着同样的光荣的荆棘路。生满了刺的蓟只有在它装饰着坟墓的时候,才开出第一朵花。

骆驼在棕榈树下面走过。它们满载着靛青和贵重的财宝。这些东西是这国家的君主送给一个人的礼物——这个人是人民的欢乐,是国家的光荣。嫉妒和毁谤逼得他不得不从这国家逃走,只有现在人们才发现他。这个骆驼队现在快要走到他避乱的那个小镇。人们抬出一具可怜的尸体走出城门,骆驼队停下来了。这个死人就正是他们所要寻找的那个人:费尔杜西⑥——光荣的荆棘路在这儿告一结束!

在葡萄牙的京城里,在王宫的大理石台阶上,坐着一个圆面孔、厚嘴唇、黑头发的非洲黑人,他在向人求乞。他是卡蒙斯⑦的忠实的奴隶。如果没有他和他求乞得到的许多铜板,他的主人——叙事诗《卢济塔尼亚人之歌》的作者——恐怕早就饿死了。

现在卡蒙斯的墓上立着一座贵重的纪念碑。

还有一幅图画!

铁栏杆后面站着一个人。他像死一样的惨白,长着一脸又长又乱的胡子。

“我发明了一件东西——一件许多世纪以来最伟大的发明,”他说。“但是人们却把我放在这里关了二十多年!”

“他是谁呢?”

“一个疯子!”疯人院的看守说。“这些疯子的怪想头才多呢!他相信人们可以用蒸汽推动东西!”

这人名叫萨洛蒙·得·高斯⑧,黎塞留⑨读不懂他的预言性的著作,因此他死在疯人院里。

现在哥伦布出现了。街上的野孩子常常跟在他后面讥笑他,因为他想发现一个新世界——而且他也就居然发现了。欢乐的钟声迎接着他的胜利的归来,但嫉妒的钟敲得比这还要响亮。他,这个发现新大陆的人,这个把美洲黄金的土地从海里捞起来的人,这个把一切贡献给他的国王的人,所得到的酬报是一条铁链。他希望把这条链子放在他的棺材上,让世人可以看到他的时代所给予他的评价⑩。

图画一幅接着一幅的出现,光荣的荆棘路真是没有尽头。

在黑暗中坐着一个人,他要量出月亮里山岳的高度。他探索星球与行星之间的太空。他这个巨人懂得大自然的规律。他能感觉到地球在他的脚下转动。这人就是伽利略⑾。老迈的他,又聋又瞎,坐在那儿,在尖锐的苦痛中和人间的轻视中挣扎。他几乎没有气力提起他的一双脚:当人们不相信真理的时候,他在灵魂的极度痛苦中曾经在地上跺着这双脚,高呼着:“但是地在转动呀!”

这儿有一个女子,她有一颗孩子的心,但是这颗心充满了热情和信念。她在一个战斗的部队前面高举着旗帜;她为她的祖国带来胜利和解放。空中起了一片狂乐的声音,于是柴堆烧起来了:大家在烧死一个巫婆——贞德⑿。是的,在接着的一个世纪中人们唾弃这朵纯洁的百合花,但智慧的鬼才伏尔泰却歌颂“拉·比塞尔”⒀。

在微堡的宫殿里,丹麦的贵族烧毁了国王的法律。火焰升起来,把这个立法者和他的时代都照亮了,同时也向那个黑暗的囚楼送进一点彩霞。他的头发斑白,腰也弯了;他坐在那儿,用手指在石桌上刻出许多线条。他曾经统治过三个王国。他是一个民众爱戴的国王;他是市民和农民的朋友:克利斯仙二世⒁。他是一个莽撞时代的一个有性格的莽撞人。敌人写下他的历史。我们一方面不忘记他的血腥的罪过,一方面也要记住:他被囚禁了二十七年。

有一艘船从丹麦开出去了。船上有一个人倚着桅杆站着,向汶岛作最后的一瞥。他是杜却·布拉赫⒂。他把丹麦的名字提升到星球上去,但他所得到的报酬是讥笑和伤害。他跑到国外去。他说:“处处都有天,我还要求什么别的东西呢?”他走了;我们这位最有声望的人在国外得到了尊荣和自由。

“啊,解脱!只愿我身体中不可忍受的痛苦能够得到解脱!”好几世纪以来我们就听到这个声音。这是一张什么画片呢?这是格里芬菲尔德⒃——丹麦的普洛米修士——被铁链锁在木克荷尔姆石岛上的一幅图画。

我们现在来到美洲,来到一条大河的旁边。有一大群人集拢来,据说有一艘船可以在坏天气中逆风行驶,因为它本身上具有抗拒风雨的力量。那个相信能够做到这件事的人名叫罗伯特·富尔敦⒄。他的船开始航行,但是它忽然停下来了。观众大笑起来,并且还“嘘”起来——连他自己的父亲也跟大家一起“嘘”起来:“自高自大!糊涂透顶!他现在得到了报应!就该把这个疯子关起来才对!”

一根小钉子摇断了——刚才机器不能动就是因了它的缘故。轮子转动起来了,轮翼在水中向前推进,船在开行!蒸汽机的杠杆把世界各国间的距离从钟头缩短成为分秒。

人类啊,当灵魂懂得了它的使命以后,你能体会到在这清醒的片刻中所感到的幸福吗?在这片刻中,你在光荣的荆棘路上所得到的一切创伤——即使是你自己所造成的——也会痊愈,恢复健康、力量和愉快;嘈音变成谐声;人们可以在一个人身上看到上帝的仁慈,而这仁慈通过一个人普及到大众。

光荣的荆棘路看起来象环绕着地球的一条灿烂的光带。只有幸运的人才被送到这条带上行走,才被指定为建筑那座联接上帝与人间的桥梁的、没有薪水的总工程师。

历史拍着它强大的翅膀,飞过许多世纪,同时在光荣的荆棘路的这个黑暗背景上,映出许多明朗的图画,来鼓起我们的勇气,给予我们安慰,促进我们内心的平安。这条光荣的荆棘路,跟童话不同,并不在这个人世间走到一个辉煌和快乐的终点,但是它却超越时代,走向永恒。

①阿里斯托芬(约公元前446-前385),古代希腊喜剧家。他在剧本《云》里猛烈攻击苏格拉底。

②僭主统治,指用武力夺取政权而建立的个人统治。公元前七至六世纪,希腊各城邦形成时期,较广泛地出现过这种政权形式。公元前404年,斯巴达打败雅典,在雅典扶植一个30人的委员会,后来被称为“三十僭主政府”。

③苏格拉底(公元前470-前399),古代希腊哲学家。他曾在一次战争中救过雅典政治家和军事家阿尔基比阿德斯(约公元前450~前404)的性命。在另一次战争中又救过他的学生希腊的历史学家、军事家和政论家色诺芬(约公元前444-前354)的性命。

④雅典政府逼迫苏格拉底喝毒葡萄酒自杀。

⑤古代希腊的每个城市是一个国家。

⑥这是波斯伟大诗人曼苏尔(Abul Kasim Mansur,940-1020?)的笔名,叙事诗《王书》(Shahnama)的作者。这部诗有六万行,是波斯国王请他写的,并且答应给他每行一块金币。但是诗完成后,国王的大臣却给他每行一块银币。他在盛怒之下写了一首诗讽刺国王的恶劣。这首诗现在就成了《王书》的序言。待国王追捕他时,他已经逃出了国境。

⑦全名是Luiz Yaz Camoes(1524?~1580),葡萄牙的最伟大的诗人。他的叙事诗《卢济塔尼亚人之歌》(Os Lusiadas)是葡萄牙最伟大的史诗。他生前曾多次被关进监狱。

⑧高斯(Salomon de Caus,1576~1626),是法国的科学家,他的著作有《动力与各种机器的关系》(Raisons des forces mouvantes avec diverses machines),说明蒸汽的原理。

⑨黎塞留(Richelieu,1585-1642)是法国的首相,曾有一个时候拥有国家最高的权力。

⑩1500年8月24日西班牙政府派人到美洲去把哥伦布逮捕起来,用铁链子把他套着,送回西班牙。

⑾伽利略(Galilei,1564-1642)是意大利著名的天文学家。

⑿贞德(Jeanne d'Are,1412-1431)一译冉·达克,是法国的女英雄,她在1429年带领6000人打退打退英国的侵略者。后来她被人出卖与英国人,因而当做巫婆被烧死。

⒀伏尔泰(Voltaire,1694-1779)是法国著名的作家,《拉·比塞尔》是他写的一部关于贞德的史诗。

⒁丹麦的国王克利斯仙二世(Christian den Anden,1481-1559),联合农民和市民反对贵族的专权,但终于被贵族推翻,囚禁起来。他曾经连年对外进行过战争。

⒂布拉赫(1546-1601)丹麦著名天文学家,丹麦在汶岛(Hveen)的天文台就是他建立的。“杜却星球”是他发现的。

⒃格里芬菲尔德(Peder Griffenfeld,1635-1699),是丹麦的一个大政治家。他的政策是发展工商业以增加国家财富;但首要的条件是保持国际间的和平,特别是与丹麦的邻邦瑞典保持和平。1675年丹麦对瑞典宣战,1676年3月格里芬菲尔德被捕,被判处死刑,后改为终身囚禁。

⒄富尔敦(Robert Fulton,1765-1815),美国的发明家,他设计和建造美国的第一艘用蒸汽机推动的轮船。

英文版:The Thorny Road of Honor

AN old story yet lives of the “Thorny Road of Honor,” of a marksman, who indeed attained to rank and office, but only after a lifelong and weary strife against difficulties. Who has not, in reading this story, thought of his own strife, and of his own numerous “difficulties?” The story is very closely akin to reality; but still it has its harmonious explanation here on earth, while reality often points beyond the confines of life to the regions of eternity. The history of the world is like a magic lantern that displays to us, in light pictures upon the dark ground of the present, how the benefactors of mankind, the martyrs of genius, wandered along the thorny road of honor.

From all periods, and from every country, these shining pictures display themselves to us. Each only appears for a few moments, but each represents a whole life, sometimes a whole age, with its conflicts and victories. Let us contemplate here and there one of the company of martyrs—the company which will receive new members until the world itself shall pass away.

We look down upon a crowded amphitheatre. Out of the “Clouds” of Aristophanes, satire and humor are pouring down in streams upon the audience; on the stage Socrates, the most remarkable man in Athens, he who had been the shield and defence of the people against the thirty tyrants, is held up mentally and bodily to ridicule—Socrates, who saved Alcibiades and Xenophon in the turmoil of battle, and whose genius soared far above the gods of the ancients. He himself is present; he has risen from the spectator’s bench, and has stepped forward, that the laughing Athenians may well appreciate the likeness between himself and the caricature on the stage. There he stands before them, towering high above them all.

Thou juicy, green, poisonous hemlock, throw thy shadow over Athens—not thou, olive tree of fame!

Seven cities contended for the honor of giving birth to Homer—that is to say, they contended after his death! Let us look at him as he was in his lifetime. He wanders on foot through the cities, and recites his verses for a livelihood; the thought for the morrow turns his hair gray! He, the great seer, is blind, and painfully pursues his way—the sharp thorn tears the mantle of the king of poets. His song yet lives, and through that alone live all the heroes and gods of antiquity.

One picture after another springs up from the east, from the west, far removed from each other in time and place, and yet each one forming a portion of the thorny road of honor, on which the thistle indeed displays a flower, but only to adorn the grave.

The camels pass along under the palm trees; they are richly laden with indigo and other treasures of value, sent by the ruler of the land to him whose songs are the delight of the people, the fame of the country. He whom envy and falsehood have driven into exile has been found, and the caravan approaches the little town in which he has taken refuge. A poor corpse is carried out of the town gate, and the funeral procession causes the caravan to halt. The dead man is he whom they have been sent to seek—Firdusi—who has wandered the Thorny road of honor even to the end.

The African, with blunt features, thick lips, and woolly hair, sits on the marble steps of the palace in the capital of Portugal, and begs. He is the submissive slave of Camoens, and but for him, and for the copper coins thrown to him by the passers-by, his master, the poet of the “Lusiad,” would die of hunger. Now, a costly monument marks the grave of Camoens.

There is a new picture.

Behind the iron grating a man appears, pale as death, with long unkempt beard.

“I have made a discovery,” he says, “the greatest that has been made for centuries; and they have kept me locked up here for more than twenty years!”

Who is the man?

“A madman,” replies the keeper of the madhouse. “What whimsical ideas these lunatics have! He imagines that one can propel things by means of steam.”

It is Solomon de Cares, the discoverer of the power of steam, whose theory, expressed in dark words, is not understood by Richelieu; and he dies in the madhouse.

Here stands Columbus, whom the street boys used once to follow and jeer, because he wanted to discover a new world; and he has discovered it. Shouts of joy greet him from the breasts of all, and the clash of bells sounds to celebrate his triumphant return; but the clash of the bells of envy soon drowns the others. The discoverer of a world—he who lifted the American gold land from the sea, and gave it to his king—he is rewarded with iron chains. He wishes that these chains may be placed in his coffin, for they witness to the world of the way in which a man’s contemporaries reward good service.

One picture after another comes crowding on; the thorny path of honor and of fame is over-filled.

Here in dark night sits the man who measured the mountains in the moon; he who forced his way out into the endless space, among stars and planets; he, the mighty man who understood the spirit of nature, and felt the earth moving beneath his feet—Galileo. Blind and deaf he sits—an old man thrust through with the spear of suffering, and amid the torments of neglect, scarcely able to lift his foot—that foot with which, in the anguish of his soul, when men denied the truth, he stamped upon the ground, with the exclamation, “Yet it moves!”

Here stands a woman of childlike mind, yet full of faith and inspiration. She carries the banner in front of the combating army, and brings victory and salvation to her fatherland. The sound of shouting arises, and the pile flames up. They are burning the witch, Joan of Arc. Yes, and a future century jeers at the White Lily. Voltaire, the satyr of human intellect, writes “La Pucelle.”

At the Thing or Assembly at Viborg, the Danish nobles burn the laws of the king. They flame up high, illuminating the period and the lawgiver, and throw a glory into the dark prison tower, where an old man is growing gray and bent. With his finger he marks out a groove in the stone table. It is the popular king who sits there, once the ruler of three kingdoms, the friend of the citizen and the peasant. It is Christian the Second. Enemies wrote his history. Let us remember his improvements of seven and twenty years, if we cannot forget his crime.

A ship sails away, quitting the Danish shores. A man leans against the mast, casting a last glance towards the Island Hueen. It is Tycho Brahe. He raised the name of Denmark to the stars, and was rewarded with injury, loss and sorrow. He is going to a strange country.

“The vault of heaven is above me everywhere,” he says, “and what do I want more?”

And away sails the famous Dane, the astronomer, to live honored and free in a strange land.

“Ay, free, if only from the unbearable sufferings of the body!” comes in a sigh through time, and strikes upon our ear. What a picture! Griffenfeldt, a Danish Prometheus, bound to the rocky island of Munkholm.

We are in America, on the margin of one of the largest rivers; an innumerable crowd has gathered, for it is said that a ship is to sail against the wind and weather, bidding defiance to the elements. The man who thinks he can solve the problem is named Robert Fulton. The ship begins its passage, but suddenly it stops. The crowd begins to laugh and whistle and hiss—the very father of the man whistles with the rest.

“Conceit! Foolery!” is the cry. “It has happened just as he deserved. Put the crack-brain under lock and key!”

Then suddenly a little nail breaks, which had stopped the machine for a few moments; and now the wheels turn again, the floats break the force of the waters, and the ship continues its course; and the beam of the steam engine shortens the distance between far lands from hours into minutes.

O human race, canst thou grasp the happiness of such a minute of consciousness, this penetration of the soul by its mission, the moment in which all dejection, and every wound—even those caused by one’s own fault—is changed into health and strength and clearness—when discord is converted to harmony—the minute in which men seem to recognize the manifestation of the heavenly grace in one man, and feel how this one imparts it to all?

Thus the thorny path of honor shows itself as a glory, surrounding the earth with its beams. Thrice happy he who is chosen to be a wanderer there, and, without merit of his own, to be placed between the builder of the bridge and the earth—between Providence and the human race.

On mighty wings the spirit of history floats through the ages, and shows—giving courage and comfort, and awakening gentle thoughts—on the dark nightly background, but in gleaming pictures, the thorny path of honor, which does not, like a fairy tale, end in brilliancy and joy here on earth, but stretches out beyond all time, even into eternity!

文章来源:安徒生童话

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