愚公移山 ~ A Foolish Old Man Moves a Mountain

Source: 「中國寓言」 ICLP Textbook

愚公移山
愚公的住宅前面有一座大山,正對著他們門口。他家裡有三十多口人,每次外出,都要從山的旁邊繞過去,非常不方便。

當時愚公已經九十多歳了,在家裡養老,他決定在自己的晚年做一件有意義的事:把那座山搬走。於是他率領全家大小,開始搬山的工作,把山上的土和石頭,一點兒一點兒地搬到遠處去。但是那座山太大了,他們的力量終歸有限,所以工作進行得很慢。

附近有一位智翁,覺得愚公的這種行爲很荒唐。他勸愚公說:「這是不可能的事,我看你老兄還是打消這個念頭吧。你不想一想,今天你已經九十多歳了,即使你今年二十歳,你就是用一輩子的時間,也不能把這座山搬走萬分之一啊。」

愚公說:「事情也許沒有你想得那麽困難。如果我這一輩子不能把這座山搬走,我死之後還有我的兒孫,我的兒孫死後還有我兒孫的兒孫。我們可以世世代代繼續這個工作。這座山是死的,它又不會再長大,只要我們努力不懈,早晚把它完全搬走。」

山神聽到這個消息,心理很憂慮,因爲他知道了愚公的決心非常堅定,絕對不會改變。他爲了保持那座山的完整,馬上自己動手把它搬到另外一個地方去了。

A Foolish Old Man Moves a Mountain
There once was a foolish old man whose house faced a mountain. There were thirty people in his family, and every time they went out, they had to go all the way around the mountain to get anywhere, which was seriously inconvenient.

The old man was over ninety and well into his retirement when he decided to do something useful with his autumn years: move the mountain. Since he was the head of his household, he ordered everyone to help him take the dirt and stones from the peak far away from their home. But the mountain was massive, and they were not, so the work went very slowly.

One of his neighbors, a wise elder, though this was ridiculous. He said: “I hate to see you spending your days like this. You’re trying to do the impossible. If you had started this when you were twenty years old, you still wouldn’t have made a dent by now.”

The foolish old man said, “It isn’t as hopeless as you think. If I can’t move this mountain in my lifetime, my grandchildren will continue my work, and their grandchildren will do the same. It’s a dead clod of dirt and rock. It can’t get any bigger than it is now. As long as we don’t give up, we’ll eventually succeed.”

When the God of the Mountains heard this, he became very anxious, because he knew how determined the old man was. So in order to protect the entirety of the mountain, the god picked it up and put it somewhere else.

Translator’s Note: The parallel with Matthew 17:20 is as conspicuous as Fuji: “Amen, I say to you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

Explore posts in the same categories: China, La Vida, Literature, Translations

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