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misadventure/['misəd'ventʃə]/ n. 运气不佳的遭遇 ...

How to Live Beautifully

本文属阅读资料
How to Live Beautifully 如何永葆青春

By Margaret.Mason

In my newspaper column some months ago, I reprinted a short essay on youth by Samuel Ullman, an author unknown to me. Then I got a call from Ullman's great-grandson, Richard Ullman Rosenfield, a psychologist. He told me that he had been intrigued with the "spiritual journey" of the essay, especially in Japan.
Gen. Douglas MacArthur, I learned, often quoted Ullman's "Youth" essay and kept a framed copy over his desk throughout the Pacific campaign. It's believed that the Japanese picked up the work from his Tokyo headquarters.
Unlikely as it may sound, this essay, written more than 70 years ago, is the underpinning of much Japanese productivity and the basis of many businessmen's life philosophies. Many carry creased copies in their wallets.
"Anyone worth his salt in Japanese business knows and uses this essay," says one longtime Japan observer, "It is our Popeye's spinach," said Tatsuro Ishida, who was deputy chairman of Fujisankei Communications Group.
"It touches me at the core of my heart," says Kokichi Hagiwara, the 67-year-old chairman of Japanese/American-owned National Steel in Pittsburgh. "This kind of enthusiasm is indispensable, We must have the spirit of youth to make change."
Some Japanese leaders see the essay as a bridge between the two cultures, If Westerners can understand Japanese reverence for it, maybe they can better understand the Japanese businessman's quest for spiritual sustenance in the midst of material abundance.
When one of Ullman's grandsons, Jonas Rosenfield, Jr., was having dinner in Japan a few years ago, "Youth" came up in conversation, Rosenfield told his dinner companion, a Japanese business leader, that the author was his grandfather. The news was staggering.
"'You are the grandson of Samuel Ullman?' he kept repeating," says Rosenfield, head of the American Film Marketing Association. "He couldn't get over it."
Then the executive pulled a copy of "Youth" from his pocket and told Rosenfield, "I carry it with me always."
Three years ago, several hundred top businessmen and government leaders gathered in Tokyo and Osaka to celebrate their admiration of Ullman's essay. Testimonials abounded, including one from Konosuke Matsushita, founder of the Panasonic Company, who said "Youth" has been his motto for 20 years.
Someone asked, "Why don't Americans love the essay as much as we do? It sends a message about how to live beautifully to men and women, old and young alike."

Samuel Ullman was born in 1840 in Germany and came to American as a boy. He fought in the U.S, Civil War and settled in Birmingham, Alabama. He was a hardware merchant with a penchant for public service that continues 67 years after his death, In the last few years more than $36,000 from Japanese royalties on a book and a cassette reading of his work has gone to a University of Alabama at Birmingham scholarship fund, Not bad for a man who started writing in his 70s.


译文:

如 何 永 葆 青 春
[美]玛格丽特.梅森
华智 宇铭 译

数月前,笔者在敝报专栏转载了一篇论青春的短文,对作者塞缪尔.厄尔曼其人我并无所知。可不久就接到他的曾孙理查德.厄尔曼.罗森菲尔德——一位心理学家的电话,说他对该文能在各地尤其是日本广为传诵极感兴趣。
我听说道格拉斯.麦克阿瑟将军经常好引用厄尔曼的《青春》一文,并且在整个太平洋战争期间,一直将他镶入镜框悬于座右。据传,日本人就是从他在东京的占领军总部得到它的。
乍听起来似乎不太可能,这篇写于七十多年前的散文竟然会有助于提高日本的生产率,并且被许多实业家奉为人生观的圭臬。不少人还将这篇皱折不堪的文章放入皮夹里随身携带。
一位资深的日本问题观察家说过:“在日本实业界,凡是有所成就的人,无不知晓并且应用过这篇文章。”富士产经通讯集团的副总裁石田达郎说得好:“它真是我们大力士水手吃的菠菜。”
匹兹堡日美合资的全国钢铁公司总裁、现年67岁的荻原幸吉也说:“它简直说到我的心坎儿里去了。这种热忱是绝对不可或缺的。我们必须以青春的精神去改进工作。”
一些日本领导人把它看作是沟通两种文化的桥梁。要是西方人能够理解日本人为何对它如此推崇,也许他们就会更能够理解日本的实业家们为何在物质极其富足的情况下还要寻求精神支柱了。
几年前,厄尔曼的一个孙子小乔纳斯.罗森菲尔德在日本的一次宴会上曾谈起过《青春》,他对同席的一位日本实业界领袖说作者是他的祖父。这使大家惊诧不已。
“‘您就是塞缪尔.厄尔曼的孙子吗?’他一再这样问我。”现任美国影片销售协会主席的罗森菲尔德说,“他对那篇文章就是不能忘怀。”
于是那位经理马上从口袋里掏出一篇《青春》,对罗森菲尔德说:“我随时随地都带在身上呢。”
三年前,几百位实业界和政界领袖分别在东京和大阪集会,以表示对厄尔曼文章的钦佩之忱。赞美之词不胜枚举。松下电器公司的创始人松下幸之助说,二十年来,《青春》一直是他的座右铭。
有人问:“怎么美国人远不如我们人本人喜爱这篇文章?对我们每个人,无论男女老幼,这篇文章都给予了一种启示,教我们如何去美好的生活。”

塞缪尔.厄尔曼1840年生于德国,童年时移居美国。参加过南北战争,后来定居于拉巴马州的伯明翰市。他是一位五金制品商,热心公益67年如一日。在其生前的最后几年,他曾日本得到一本书及其作品的录音盒带稿酬36,000美元,并全部捐赠给伯明翰市的一所亚拉巴马州立大学作为奖学基金。这对一个在古稀之年才开始写作的人来说是相当了不起的。
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