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英语美文欣赏:充满魅力的神秘世界

作者: 阿信 发布时间: 2019年10月12日 16:49:06

  When I was a child, after bedtime I would often get out of my bed in my pajamas, go to the window and stare at the stars. I had so many questions. How far away were those tiny points of light? Did space go on forever and ever, or was there some end to space,some giant edge? And if so, what lay beyond the edge? Another of my childhood questions: Did time go on forever? I looked at pictures of my parents and grandparents and tried to imagine their parents, and so on, back through the generations, back and back through time. Does time go on forever? Or is there some beginning of time? And if so,what came before? When I grew up, I became a professional astrophysicist. Although I never answered any of these questions, they continued to challenge me, to haunt me, to drive me in my scientific research, to cause me to live on tuna fish and no sleep for days at time while I was obsessed with a science problem.

  小时候,我常常在入睡前裹着睡衣溜下床,来到窗前凝视满天星斗。我曾有很多的疑问:那些小亮点离我们有多远?太空会永恒地存在吗?没准儿太空也有尽头,有着某种巨大的边缘?如果是这样,置身于边缘之外的是什么呢?我童年时代的另一个疑问是:时间是永不停息的吗?我注视着父母和祖父母的相片,努力想像他们的父母是什么样子,就这样一直想下去回溯数代,追溯久远。时间是不停息的吗?没准时间也有起点?如果是这样,在时间之前又会是什么样的情形呢?长大之后,我成了一名职业的天体物理学家。尽管我从没能回答这些问题中的任何一个,可它们仍不断地激励着我、萦绕着我、驱使着我继续从事科研究,让我在着迷于某个科学难题时以金枪鱼罐头为食,连日不眠不休。

  These same questions, and questions like them challenge and haunt the leading scientists of today. Einstein once wrote that "the most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science." What did Einstein mean by “the mysterious?" I don't think he meant that science is full of unpredictable or unknowable or supernatural forces. I think that he meant a sense of awe, a sense that there are things larger than us, that we do not have all the answers at this moment. And a sense that we can stand right at the boundary between known and unknown and gaze into that cavern and be exhilarated rather than frightened.

  这些同样的问题和诸如此类的问题,时至今日仍激励并萦绕着最顶尖的科学家。爱因斯坦曾写道:“我们拥有的最动人心弦的经历莫过于探索神秘世界。这种基本情感正是孕育纯粹艺术和揭示科学真理的摇篮。”爱因斯坦所指的“神秘世界”是什么?我认为他并不是说科学是不可预测的、不可知的,或是超乎自然的力量。我认为他指的是一种敬畏感,是一种意识世界上存在着比我们人类更博大的事物,而我们现在远未达到无所不知的境界。爱因斯坦所说的还是一种感觉,即我们恰好可以站在可知与不可知的分界线上注视着未知洞穴深处,我们感到欢欣鼓舞,而并不畏惧胆怯。

  Scientists are happy, of course, when they find answers to questions. But scientists are also happy when they become stuck, when they discover interesting questions that they cannot answer. Because that is when their imaginations and creativity are set on fire. That is when the greatest progress occurs. One of the Holy Grails in physics is to find the so-called "Theory of Everything," the final theory that will encompass all the fundamental laws of nature. I, for one, hope that we never find that final theory. I believe in the creative power of the unknown. I believe in the exhilaration of standing at the boundary between the known and the unknown. I believe in the unanswered questions of children.

  当然了,科学家们探寻到问题的答案时是快乐的。但是,当科学家们受难题困扰进退维谷时,当他们发现了自己不能解答的新奇问题时,他们也很快乐。因为正是这个时候他们的想像力和创造力被激活了,这正是最伟大的进步来的时刻。物理学的“圣杯”之一就是寻找我所谓的“万物理论”一种涵盖所有基本自然法则的终极理论。就我而言,我希望我们永远不要找到那个终极理论。我坚信源自未知世界的创造力,我欣赏身处已知与未知交界的喜悦,我赞许孩子们提出的哪些认人哑口无言的问题。