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英语励志美文精华 11

时间:2009-02-12 02:56来源:互联网 提供网友:不许输   字体: [ ]
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What Are People Good For?

By Ina Corinne Brown

One's beliefs are revealed not so much in words or in formal creeds1 as in the assumptions on which one habitually2 acts and in the basic values by which all choices are tested.

The cornerstone of my own value system was laid in childhood with parents who believed that personal integrity came first. They never asked, ”What will people think?” The question was,“What will you think of yourself, if you do this or fail to do that?” Thus, living up to one’s own conception of one’s self became a basic value, and the question, “What will people think,” took a subordinate place.

A second basic value, in some ways an extension of the first, I owe to an old college professor, who had suffered more than his share of grief and trouble. Over and over he said to us, “The one thing that really matters is to be bigger than the things that can happen to you. Nothing that can happen to you is half so important that the way in which you end it.”

Gradually I realized that here was the basis of the only really security and peace of mind that a human being can have. Nobody can be sure when disaster, disappointment, injustice3, or humiliation4, may come to him through no fault of his own. Nor can one be guaranteed against one’s own mistakes and failures. But the way we meet life is ours to choose. And when integrity, fortitude5, dignity, and compassion6 are our choice, the things that can happen to us lose their power over us.

The acceptance of these two basic values led to a third. If what one is and how one meets life are of first importance, one is not impressed by another's money, status, or power, nor does one judge people by their race, color, or social position. This opens up a whole new world of relationships, for when friendships are based on qualities of mind and character, one can have friends among old and young, rich and poor, famous and unknown, educated and unlettered, and among people of all races and all nations.

Given these three basic values, a fourth became inevitable7. It is one's duty and obligation to help create a social order in which persons are more important than things, ideas more precious than gadgets8, and in which individuals are judged on the basis of personal worth. Moreover, for this judgment9 to be fair, human beings must have an opportunity for the fullest development of which they are capable. One is thus led to work for a world of freedom and justice through those social agencies and institutions which make it possible for people everywhere to realize their highest potentialities.

Perhaps all this adds up to a belief in what has been called the human use of human beings. We are set off from the rest of the animal world by our capacity consciously to transcend10 our physical needs and desires. Men must concern themselves with food and with other physical needs, and they must protect themselves and their own from bodily harm, but these activities are not exclusively human. Many animals concern themselves with these things. When we worship, pray, or feel compassion, when we enjoy a painting, a sunset or a sonata11, when we think and reason, pursue ideas, seek truth, or read a book, when we protect the weak and helpless, when we honor the noble and cherish the good, when we cooperate with our fellow men to build a better world, our behavior is worthy12 of our status as human beings.


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1 creeds 6087713156d7fe5873785720253dc7ab     
(尤指宗教)信条,教条( creed的名词复数 )
参考例句:
  • people of all races, colours and creeds 各种种族、肤色和宗教信仰的人
  • Catholics are agnostic to the Protestant creeds. 天主教徒对于新教教义来说,是不可知论者。
2 habitually 4rKzgk     
ad.习惯地,通常地
参考例句:
  • The pain of the disease caused him habitually to furrow his brow. 病痛使他习惯性地紧皱眉头。
  • Habitually obedient to John, I came up to his chair. 我已经习惯于服从约翰,我来到他的椅子跟前。
3 injustice O45yL     
n.非正义,不公正,不公平,侵犯(别人的)权利
参考例句:
  • They complained of injustice in the way they had been treated.他们抱怨受到不公平的对待。
  • All his life he has been struggling against injustice.他一生都在与不公正现象作斗争。
4 humiliation Jd3zW     
n.羞辱
参考例句:
  • He suffered the humiliation of being forced to ask for his cards.他蒙受了被迫要求辞职的羞辱。
  • He will wish to revenge his humiliation in last Season's Final.他会为在上个季度的决赛中所受的耻辱而报复的。
5 fortitude offzz     
n.坚忍不拔;刚毅
参考例句:
  • His dauntless fortitude makes him absolutely fearless.他不屈不挠的坚韧让他绝无恐惧。
  • He bore the pain with great fortitude.他以极大的毅力忍受了痛苦。
6 compassion 3q2zZ     
n.同情,怜悯
参考例句:
  • He could not help having compassion for the poor creature.他情不自禁地怜悯起那个可怜的人来。
  • Her heart was filled with compassion for the motherless children.她对于没有母亲的孩子们充满了怜悯心。
7 inevitable 5xcyq     
adj.不可避免的,必然发生的
参考例句:
  • Mary was wearing her inevitable large hat.玛丽戴着她总是戴的那顶大帽子。
  • The defeat had inevitable consequences for British policy.战败对英国政策不可避免地产生了影响。
8 gadgets 7239f3f3f78d7b7d8bbb906e62f300b4     
n.小机械,小器具( gadget的名词复数 )
参考例句:
  • Certainly. The idea is not to have a house full of gadgets. 当然。设想是房屋不再充满小配件。 来自超越目标英语 第4册
  • This meant more gadgets and more experiments. 这意味着要设计出更多的装置,做更多的实验。 来自英汉非文学 - 科学史
9 judgment e3xxC     
n.审判;判断力,识别力,看法,意见
参考例句:
  • The chairman flatters himself on his judgment of people.主席自认为他审视人比别人高明。
  • He's a man of excellent judgment.他眼力过人。
10 transcend qJbzC     
vt.超出,超越(理性等)的范围
参考例句:
  • We can't transcend the limitations of the ego.我们无法超越自我的局限性。
  • Everyone knows that the speed of airplanes transcend that of ships.人人都知道飞机的速度快于轮船的速度。
11 sonata UwgwB     
n.奏鸣曲
参考例句:
  • He played a piano sonata of his own composition.他弹奏了一首自作的钢琴奏鸣曲。
  • The young boy played the violin sonata masterfully.那个小男孩的小提琴奏鸣曲拉得很熟练。
12 worthy vftwB     
adj.(of)值得的,配得上的;有价值的
参考例句:
  • I did not esteem him to be worthy of trust.我认为他不值得信赖。
  • There occurred nothing that was worthy to be mentioned.没有值得一提的事发生。
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