培根散文随笔集——论敏捷

2017-05-04 08:11:11   Tag:

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培根散文随笔集——论敏捷:过于求速是作事上最大的危险之一。它有如医家所谓的“前消化”或过速消化一样,一定会使人体中满含酸液与各种难察的病根的。因此,不可以作事底时间之多寡为敏捷底标准而当以事业进展之程度为标准。

Of Dispatch

  Affected dispatch is one of the most dangerous things to business that can be. It is like that, which the physicians call predigestion, or hasty digestion; which is sure to fill the body full of crudities, and secret seeds of diseases. Therefore, measure not dispatch by the times of sitting, but by the advancement of the business. 


  And as in races, it is not the large stride, or high lift, that makes the speed: so in business, the keeping close to the matter, and not taking of it too much at once, procureth dispatch. It is the care of some, only to come off speedily for the time; or to contrive some false periods of business, because they may seem men of dispatch. 


  But it is one thing, to abbreviate by contracting, another by cutting off: and business so handled at several sittings or meetings, goeth commonly backward and forward, in an unsteady manner. I knew a wise man, that had it for a by-word, when he saw men hasten to a conclusion; Stay a little, that we may make an end the sooner.


  On the other side, true dispatch is a rich thing. For time is the measure of business, as money is of wares: and business is bought at a dear hand, where there is small dispatch. The Spartans, and Spaniards, have been noted to be of small dispatch; Mi venga la muerta de Spagna;


  Let my death come from Spain; for then it will be sure to be long in coming.


  Give good hearing to those that give the first information in business; and rather direct them in the beginning, than interrupt them in the continuance of their speeches: for he that is put out of his own order, will go forward and backward, and be more tedious while he waits upon his memory, than he could have been, if he had gone on in his own course. 


  But sometimes it is seen, that the moderator is more troublesome than the actor. Iterations are commonly loss of time: but there is no such gain of time, as to iterate often the state of the question: for it chaselh away many a frivolous speech, as it is coming forth. Long and curious speeches are as fit for dispatch, as a robe or mantle with a long train, is for race. Prefaces, and passages, and excusations, and other speeches of reference to the person, are great wastes of time; and though they seem to proceed of modesty, they are bravery. Yet beware of being too material, when there is any impediment or obstruction in men\'s wills; for pre-occupation of mind ever requireth preface of speech;like a fomentation to make the unguent enter.


  Above all things, order, and distribution, and singling out of parts, is me life of dispatch; so as the distribution be not too subtle: for he mat doth not divide will never enter well into business; and he that divideth too much will never come out of it clearly. To choose time is to save time; and an unseasonable motion is but beating the air.There be three parts of business: the preparation; the debate, or examination; and the perfection. Whereof, if you look for dispatch, let the middle only be the work of many, and the first and last the work of few. The proceeding upon somewhat conceived in writing, doth for the most part facilitate dispatch: for though it should be wholly rejected, yet that negative is more pregnant of direction than an indefinite; as ashes are more generative than dust


论敏捷


    过于求速是作事上最大的危险之一。它有如医家所谓的“前消化”或过速消化一样,一定会使人体中满含酸液与各种难察的病根的。因此,不可以作事底时间之多寡为敏捷底标准而当以事业进展之程度为标准。譬如在赛跑中,速度并不靠步武之大与举足之高;同此,在事业上,达到敏捷的方法在乎专心治事而不在一次包揽许多事务也。有些人一心只要显露自己能在短时期内做许多事;或者把未办完的事设法掩饰成了结的样子,以图外表上显出他们是敏捷的人。然而以紧密的手段缩短作事的时间为一事,以省略的手段缩短时间为又一事也。类此,以数次会议办理的事务常是往返多次,无固定的处理之方者也。我认得一位智者,他在看见人家急欲达到一个决议的时候,常有一句成语,就是,“稍待一会,如此我们就可以早点完事了”。


    在另一方面,真正的敏捷是一件很有价值的事。因为时间是衡量事业的标准,一如金钱是衡量货物的标准;所以在作事不敏捷的时候,那事业底代价一定是很高的。斯巴达人和西班牙人曾以迟缓著名;“让我底死亡来自西班牙”;因为如果这样的话,那我底死亡一定是来得很慢也。


    对于那些关于事务直接有所报告的人应当好好听取其言;如有指示当在报告之前说明,而不可在他们说话之中插嘴;因为被人搅乱自己谈话底次序的人将不免反复言之,并且在追忆欲说而经人打断话头的时候比他能顺着自己底路子说下去的时候将更为冗长可厌也,但有时常见抑制他人发言的人较发言者本身更为可厌。


    重复言说多半是一种时间上的损失。但是再没有比常常重述问题底性质之更为节省时间者,因为这种办法把许多空虚无关的话语在将要说出之时都驱逐掉了。冗长而过细的言辞其适于敏捷就如同宽袍长裙之适于赛跑一样。序文、承转的套语、自解的话以及其他关于一个人自身的言语都是大为浪费时间的东西;并且,它们虽然好象是出自谦虚而其实是架子排场。然而在他人有阻挠或反对之意的时候,却应当留神,不可过于直截,因为怀有先入之见的心智总是需要先容的言辞的,就好象一种要使药膏生效而先用的蒸罨剂一样。


    最要者,次序、分配、与选择乃是敏捷之所系,只要分析得不要过精就是了。因为那不善分析的人永不会治事而分析过细的人则永不会把事情办得清楚也。选择时间就等于节省时间;而不合乎时的举动则等于乱打空气。治事有三个部分;准备,讨论或审察,和完成。如果你要敏捷的话,在这三项之中,惟有中间的一项可以作为多人底工作,其头一项与末一项则当为少数人底工作。把要讨论的事先写个大要然后依这个所写的东西而商议,大多是很有助于敏捷的;因为即令所写的那些意见或计划被完全抛弃了,然而有所否定的决议总比漫无定见的谈论易于遵循;有如柴灰之比尘埃较能肥田也。


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