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典籍译本库

Library of Translations of Classics
荀子--劝学篇第一

积土成山,风雨兴焉;积水成渊,蛟龙生焉;积善成德,而神明自得,圣心备焉。故不积跬步,无以至千里;不积小流,无以成江海。骐骥一跃,不能十步;驽马十驾,功在不舍。锲而舍之,朽木不折;锲而不舍,金石可镂。螾无爪牙之利、筋骨之强,上食埃土,下饮黄泉,用心一也;蟹八跪而二螯,非蛇、蟺之穴无可寄托者,用心躁也。是故无冥冥之志者,无昭昭之明;无惛惛之事者,无赫赫之功。行衢道者不至,事两君者不容。目不能两视而明,耳不能两听而聪。螣蛇无足而飞,鼫鼠五技而穷。《诗》曰:“尸鸠在桑,其子七兮。淑人君子,其仪一兮。其仪一兮,心如结兮。”故君子结于一也。

ENGLISH
01.
Eric L. Hutton版英译文

If you accumulate enough earth to form a mountain, then wind and rain will arise from it. If you accumulate enough water to form a deep pool, then dragons will come to live in it. If you accumulate enough goodness to achieve virtue, then you will naturally attain to spirit-like powers and enlightenment, and the heart of a sage is complete therein. Without accumulating tiny steps, You have no way to go a thousand li. Without accumulating little streams, You have no way to form river or sea. Let the horse Qi Ji take a single leap; It still would go no farther than ten strides. Yet old nags ridden ten days equal him; Not giving up is where success resides. If you start carving and give up, you will not be able to break even rotten wood, but if you start carving and do not give up,  then you can engrave even metal and stone. The earthworm does not have sharp teeth and claws, nor does it have strong bones and muscles. Yet, it eats of the earth above, and it drinks from the Yellow Springs below, because it acts with single-mindedness. In contrast, the crab has six legs and two pincersYet were it not for the abandoned holes of water snakes and eels, it would have no place to lodge, because it is frenetic minded. For this reason, If you do not first have somber intention, No brilliant understanding can there be. If you do not first have determined effort, No glorious achievements will you see. One walking both forks of a road goes nowhere. One serving two lords is not viewed welcomely. Eyes focused on two things at once are not sharp. Ears tuned to two things at once don’t hear clearly. Though footless, the teng snake moves quick as flying, Yet five limbs give the wu rodent no safety. The Odes says: The shi jiu bird is on the mulberry. Seven is the number of its offspring. As for the noble man and gentleman, Their standard is one and unwavering. Their standard is one and unwaveringLike their hearts were tied to it by binding. Thus is the gentleman bound to one thing.

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