肆拾。如何说话?

风格

如何说话?

你的生活

应该像你的演讲一样

仔细斟酌, 缓慢谨慎,克制的。

雄辩应如蜂蜜般轻柔地畅流,从而舒缓我的愤怒,平息我的恐惧,摆脱我的幻想,克制我的放纵,从而谴责我的贪婪。

调遣安逸自在地表达你的雄辩术

而不匆忙仓促,我劝你放缓你著述的速度。

论哲学家话语的恰当风格

谢谢你经常给我写信;那么一封给我带来真实朋友的信是多么令人愉快啊, 当朋友的手在他们的信上留下印记,那就是赞誉,是最甜蜜的。

你写信给我,说哲学家塞拉皮奥,他习惯于以一种强烈的冲动来扭曲他的话语,他不一个接一个地流出而是让它们拥挤,互相冲撞;因为这些话语的数量如此之多,以至于单一的嗓音不足以充分的彻底诉说。

我不赞成哲学家这样做;他们的演讲,就像他们的生活一样,应该是有条理的;不是匆匆忙忙的事,而是应该井然有序的。

这就是为什么霍尔默,像暴风雪一样一扫而下的快速风格被分配给了年轻的演讲者;从智慧老人那里,如口才,如能轻轻地流出,那话比蜂蜜还甜。

因此,请记住我的话;那种强迫的、快速而量充的讲话方式更适合一个江湖骗子,而不适合一个正在讨论和详述重要而严肃主题的人。

尽管我强烈反对一个人以最快的速度说出自己的话;一个人既不应该把话语言伸得太长,也不应该震得耳朵发聋。

因为这种贫乏而轻薄的风格,会让观众不专注,厌倦缓慢;尽管如此,期待已久的信息更容易被理解。

最后,人们说要把戒律“传给”学生;但是,不是“传递”那些逃避掌握的东西,此外,涉及真理的演讲应该是朴实无华的。

流行风格与事实无关;它的目的是给普通的群众留下深刻的印象,以它的速度征服那些不经意的辨锻力;它不主动提出论典,而是从讨论中抽昇而出。

然而,这种言论如何能够支配自己,但无法支配其他人呢?,我不也可以说,所有用来治愈我们心灵的言论都应该深入我们的内心吗?

补救措施只有留在系统中才能发挥作用,此外,这种言论包含着大量纯粹的空洞;它的声音比力量大。

我的恐惧应该得到平息,我的愤怒应该得到缓解,我的幻想应该摆脱,我的放纵应该得到遏制,我的贪婪应该得到谴责。

这些治疗方法中哪一种可以实现呢?,哪位医生能在飞行途中治愈他的病人?,我是否可以补充一点,这样一个充满混乱和选择不当的术语也不能带来愉悦?

不但是,正如你在大多数情况下都很满意看到了你认为不可能做到的技巧一样,对于这个词来说,听一次就足够了。

一个人想要学习或模仿什么?,当他们的言论被完全无序地送入指控中,无法控制时,人们该怎么想想他们的灵魂呢?

正如当你跑下山时,你不能在你决定停下来的地方停下来,但你的步伐是由你身体的动量推动的,是在你想停下来的地方之外;所以这种语速无法控制自己,也不适合哲学;既然哲学应该小心地放置它们的话语,而不是抛出它们,那么就应该一步一步地进行。

“然后呢?”,你说;“哲学有时不应该采取更崇高的语气吗?”,他们当然应该;但人格的尊严应该得到维护,这被如此暴力和过度的武力剥夺了。

让哲学拥有强大的力量,但要控制好;让它们源源不断地流下去,但决不能成为洪流,即使是演说家,我也决不允许这样的演讲速度如此之快,无法收回,无法无天地继续下去;因为陪审员往往缺乏经验和培训,他们怎么可能遵循这一原则?

即使演说家被炫耀自己能力的欲望或无法控制的情绪所陶醉,即使这样,也不应该加快他们的步伐,把话语堆积到耳朵无法忍受的程度。

法比安努斯,一个因其生命、知识而引人注目的人,他的口才也不如这两者重要,他经常迅速而不是仓促地讨论一个问题;因此,您可以称之为“轻松”,而不是“速度”。

我赞同智者的这种品质;但我并不要求它;只让他们的演讲不受阻碍地进行,尽管我更希望他们的演讲应该是有意义的,而不是滔滔不绝的。

然而,我有理由更进一步的来吓唬你,使你远离后这种疾病,即你只有在失去谦逊感的情况下才能成功地练习这种风格;你将不得不忍气吞声,拒绝听自己的话语。

因为这种漫不经心的流动会带来许多你想要批评的表达,我再说一遍,你无法做到这一点,同时保持你的羞耻感。

此外,你需要每天练习,把注意力从主题转移到文字上;而语言,即使它们很快就来到你面前,你也不必费劲,但必须加以控制。

因为正如一种不那么炫耀的步态成为哲学家一样,一种克制的说话风格也能成为哲学家,而这与大胆相去甚远。

因此,我发言的最终核心是:

我命令你放缓

你著述的速度

再见了,塞内卡,坚道学。

40. How to Speak ?

Style

How to speak?

Your speech

like your life

should be measured

&

composed.

Eloquence flows gently as honey flows, thus soothing my irritations, quieting my terrors, shaking off my illusions, checking my indulgences, thus rebuking my greed.

Dispatch your eloquence with ease

rather than haste & I bid you to

slow your discourse.

On the Proper Style for a Philosopher’s Discourse

I thank you for writing to me so often; If the pictures of our absence friends are pleasing to us, though they only refresh the memory & lighten our longing by a solace that is unreal & unsubstantial, how much more pleasant is a letter, which brings us real traces, real evidences, of an absence friend!

For that which is sweetest when we meet face to face is afforded by the impress of a friend’s hand upon their letter, – Recognition.

You write me that the philosopher Serapio, “He is wont,” you say, “to wrench up his words with a mighty rush, & he does not let them flow forth one by one, but makes them crowd & dash upon each other; For the words come in such quantity that a single voice is inadequate to utter them”

I do not approve of this in a philosopher; their speech, like their life, should be composed; & nothing that rushes headlong & is hurried is well ordered.

That is why, in Homer the rapid style, which sweeps down without a break like a snow-squall, is assigned to the younger speaker; from the old person, eloquence flows gently, & is sweeter than honey.

Therefore mark my words; that forceful manner of speech, rapid & copious, is more suited to a mountebank than to a person who is discussing & teaching an important & serious subject.

Although I object just as strongly that one should drip out their words as that one should go at top speed; One should neither keep the ear on the stretch, nor deafen it.

For that poverty-stricken & thin-spun style also makes the audience less attentive because they are weary of its stammering slowness; nevertheless, the word which has been long awaited sinks in more easily than the word which flits past us on the wing.

Finally, people speak of “handing down” precepts to their pupils; but one is not “handing down” that which eludes the grasp, Besides, speech that deals with the truth should be unadorned & plain.

This popular style has nothing to do with the truth; its aim is to impress the common herd, to ravish heedless ears by its speed; it does not offer itself for discussion, but snatches itself away from discussion.

Yet how can that speech govern others which cannot itself be governed?, May I not also remark that all speech which is employed for the purpose of healing our minds, ought to sink into us?

Remedies do not avail unless they remain in the system, Besides, this sort of speech contains a great deal of sheer emptiness; it has more sound than power.

My terrors should be quieted, my irritations soothed, my illusions shaken off, my indulgences checked, my greed rebuked.

And which of these cures can be brought about in a hurry?, What physician can heal his patient on a flying visit?, May I add that such a jargon of confused & ill-chosen words cannot afford pleasure, either? 

No; but just as you are well satisfied, in the majority of cases, to have seen through tricks which you did not think could possibly be done, so in the case of these word-gymnasts, – to have heard them once is amply sufficient.

For what can a person desire to learn or to imitate in them?, What is One to think of their souls, when their speech is sent into the charge in utter disorder, & cannot be kept in hand? 

Just as, when you run down hill, you cannot stop at the point where you had decided to stop, but your steps are carried along by the momentum of your body & are borne beyond the place where you wished to halt; so this speed of speech has no control over itself, nor is it seemly for philosophy; since philosophy should carefully place their words, not fling them out, & should proceed step by step.

“What then?”, you say; “should not philosophy sometimes take a loftier tone?”, Of course they should; but dignity of character should be preserved, & this is stripped away by such violent & excessive force.

Let philosophy possess great forces, but kept well under control; let them stream flow unceasingly, but never become a torrent, & I should hardly allow even to an orator a rapidity of speech like this, which cannot be called back, which goes lawlessly ahead; for how could it be followed by jurors, who are often inexperienced & untrained?

Even when the orator is carried away by their desire to show off their powers, or by uncontrollable emotion, even then One should not quicken their pace & heap up words to an extent greater than the ear can endure.

Fabianus, a person noteworthy because of his life, his knowledge, &, less important than either of these, his eloquence also, used to discuss a subject with dispatch rather than with haste; hence you might call it ease rather than speed.

I approve this quality in the wise person; but I do not demand it; only let their speech proceed unhampered, though I prefer that it should be deliberately uttered rather than spouted.

However, I have this further reason for frightening you away from the latter malady, namely, that you could only be successful in practising this style by losing your sense of modesty; you would have to rub all shame from your countenance, & refused to hear yourself speak.

For that heedless flow will carry with it many expressions which you would wish to criticize, &, I repeat, you could not attain it & at the same time preserve your sense of shame.

Moreover, you would need to practise every day, & transfer your attention from subject matter to words; And words, even if they came to you readily & flowed without any exertion on your part, yet would have to be kept under control.

For just as a less ostentatious gait becomes a philosopher, so does a restrained style of speech, far removed from boldness.

Therefore, the ultimate kernel of my remarks is this:

I bid you be slow of speech.

Farewell, Seneca, StoicTaoist.