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No young man believes he shall ever die. It was a saying of my brother's, and a fine one. There is a feeling of Eternity in youth, which makes us amend for everything. To be young is to be as one of the Immortal Gods. One half of time indeed is flown--the other half remains in store for us with all its countless treasures; for there is no line drawn, and we see no limit to our hopes and wishes. We make the coming age our own.


The vast, the unbounded prospect lies before us.

Death, old age, are words without a meaning, that pass by us like the idle air which we regard not. Others may have undergone, or may still be liable to them--we "bear a charmed life", which laughs to scorn all such sickly fancies. As in setting out on delightful journey, we strain our eager gaze forward.

Bidding the lovely scenes at distance hail!

And see no end to the landscape, new objects presenting themselves as we advance; so, in the commencement of life, we set no bounds to our inclinations, nor to the unrestricted opportunities of gratifying them. We have as yet found no obstacle, no disposition to flag; and it seems that we can go on so forever. We look round in a new world, full of life, and motion, and ceaseless progress; and feel in ourselves all the vigour and spirit to keep pace with it, and do not foresee from any present symptoms how we shall be left behind in the natural course of things, decline into old age, and drop into the grave. It is the simplicity, and as it were abstractedness to our feelings in youth, that (so to speak) identifies us with nature, and (our experience being slight and our passions strong) deludes us into a belief of being immortal like it. Our short-lives connection with existence we fondly flatter ourselves, is an indissoluble and lasting union--a honeymoon that knows neither coldness, jar, nor separation. As infants smile and sleep, we are rocked in the cradle of our wayward fancies, and lulled into security by the roar of the universe around us--we quaff the cup of life with eager haste without draining it, instead of which it only overflows the more--objects press around us, filling the mind with their magnitude and with the strong of desires that wait upon them, so that we have no room for the thoughts of death.
此时,但觉好风光应接不暇,而且,前程更有美不胜收的新鲜景致。在这生活的开端,我们听任自己的志趣驰聘,放手给它们一切满足的机会。到此时为止,我们还 没有碰上过什么障碍,也没有感觉到什么疲惫,因此觉得还可以一直这样向前走去,直到永远。我们看到四周一派新天地--生机盎然,变动不居,日新月异;我们 觉得自己活力充盈,精神饱满,可与宇宙并驾齐驱。而且,眼前也无任何迹象可以证明,在大自然的发展过程中,我们自己也会落伍,衰老,进入坟墓。由于年轻人 天真单纯,可以说是茫然无知,因而将自己跟大自然划上等号;并且,由于经验少而感情盛,误以为自己也能和大自然一样永世长存。我们一厢情愿,痴心妄想,竟 把自己在世上的暂时栖身,当作千古不变、万世长存的结合,好像没有冷淡、争执、离别的蜜月。像婴儿带着微笑入睡,我们躺在用自己编织成的摇篮里,让大千世 界的万籁之声催哄我们安然入梦;我们急切切,兴冲冲地畅饮生命之杯,怎么也不会饮干,反而好像永远是满满欲溢的;森罗万象纷至沓来,各种欲望随之而生,使 我们腾不出工夫去想死亡。

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