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2018-03-20 18:11[英语美文] 来源: 浏览: 次 评论:

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  The Soundest Investment of All

  by C. Jared Ingersoll

  I feel very presumptuous and uncomfortable about trying to explain out loud the things Ibelieve in. But I do think that all human problems are in some way related to each other, soperhaps if people compare their experiences they may discover something in common in huntingthe answers.

  I am a very fortunate man for I lead a full and what is for me a happy life. I say this eventhough I happen to have had, in the course of it, a couple of severe personal blows.

  My first wife collapsed and died one day while she and I were ice skating, after eighteen years ofa most happy existence together. My only son, a sergeant in the army combat engineers, waskilled in Italy in the last war. Nevertheless, these tragedies did not throw me completely and Ihave been able to fill my life anew with happiness.

  I do not mean to sound calloused. Those blows hurt me deeply. I guess that two basicallyimportant things helped me most to recover. One is the fact that I have come to see life as agamble. The other is a belief in what some people call the hereafter. I try to live fully so thatwhen and if my luck changes there will be little room for regret or recrimination over time lost ormisspent. My belief in the hereafter is wrapped in the intangible but stubborn thoughts of alayman. Very likely I would get lost in trying to describe or defend, by cold logic, my belief inGod but nobody could argue me out of it.

  I have come to believe that I owe life as much as it owes me, and I suppose that explains thisfine satisfaction I get out of endeavoring to do a job to the best of what ability I have, and outof helping somebody else.

  As a kid I used to ride a rake in the hayfields. I got a tremendous kick out of trying to sweepevery field clean as a whistle. Here I made a surprising and happy discovery: that there couldbe actual enjoyment in the exercise of thoroughness and responsibility, and that duty didn’thave to be a drudge.

  I don’t know exactly why, but I like to do things for other people. Not only familyresponsibilities, work on a hospital board, and various church organizations but also the mostinconsequential things that might hardly seem worth the time. My office happens to be onIndependence Square and now and then I have occasion to direct a tourist to the Liberty Bell orfill him in on a little of the history of Philadelphia. The tourist doesn’t seem to mind and it makesme feel good. I’m afraid I’m not very profound. I have tried to comprehend why somethingso simple and so sound as the Golden Rule is so often forgotten or held in disrepute. I canonly say—and I say this quite selfishly—that I have found it a good investment. It has paid me avery high return, undoubtedly more than I deserve.










  Life grows in the soil of time

  What I believe, what I value most, is transitoriness.

  But is not transitoriness - the perishableness of life - something very sad? No! It is the verysoul of existence. It imparts value, dignity, interest to life. Transitoriness creates time - and"time is the essence." Potentially at least, time is the supreme, most useful gift.

  Time is related to - yes, identical with - everything creative and active, every process towarda higher goal.

  Without transitoriness, without beginning or end, birth or death, there is no time, either.Timelessness - in the sense of time never ending, never beginning - is a stagnant nothing. It isabsolutely uninteresting.

  Life is possessed by tremendous tenacity. Even so its presence remains conditional, and asit had a beginning, so it will have an end. I believe that life, just for this reason, is exceedinglyenhanced in value, in charm.

  One of the most important characteristics distinguishing man from all other forms of nature ishis knowledge of transitoriness, of beginning and end, and therefore of the gift of time.

  In man transitory life attains its peak of animation, of soul power, so to speak. This does notmean alone would have a soul. Soul quality pervades all beings. But man's soul is most awakein his knowledge of the interchangeability of the term "existence" and "transitoriness".

  To man time is given like a piece of land, as it were, entrusted to him for faithful tilling; a spacein which to strive incessantly, achieve self-realization, more onward and upward. Yes, with theaid of time, man becomes capable of wresting the immortal from the mortal.

  Deep down, I believe - and deem such belief natural to every human soul - that in the universityprime significance must be attributed to this earth of ours. Deep down I believe that creation ofthe universe out of nothingness and of life out of inorganic state ultimately aimed at thecreation of man. I believe that man is meant as a great experiment whose possible failure ofman's own guilt would be paramount to the failure of creation itself.

  Whether this belief be true or not, man would be well advised if he behaved as though it were.













  New challenges require new ways of thinking


  Part car, part jet fighter, part spaceship, Bloodhound SSC aims to be the first land vehicle to break the 1,000mph barrier. One of the key challenges has been to design the wheels. How do you create the fastest wheels in history, make them stable and reliable at supersonic speeds, and with limited resources?


  After much deliberation, and devising ideas that pushed the boundaries of material technology, Mark Chapman, chief engineer of the Bloodhound project said the team decided to take a step back and change the way they were trying to solve problems. “There’s very little we’ve actually developed that’s new,” he says, “what’s unique is how we apply technologies.”


  They adopted an approach called the design of experiments – a mathematical technique of problem solving through doing lots of little experiments and then looking at the statistics all glued together. “All of a sudden, where we’d been knocking our head against the wall for maybe two, three, four months, we came up with a wheel design that would hold together and was strong enough,” he says.