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什么是意识流?

What is the Stream of Consciousness?

最难描述 也最难正确认识的是
One of the hardest things to describe or to be properly aware of is
若是进入大脑内部 我们会看到怎样的一幅景象
what it feels like to be inside our own minds.
对于所有脑内连续的画面流 话语流 情感流和声音流
The second-by-second flow of images, words, feelings and sounds
哲学家统称为:意识
inside our heads that philosophers call: our Consciousness.
从早到晚 大脑的意识都充满了杂乱的信息 而眼睛总是忙于观察 所以它们总是从眼前一掠而过
All day, this consiousness is filled with a tangle of material that flashes by an observing eye
但它们却应有尽有 十分稠密
so fast and in so multi-layered and dense array;
一般来说 我们只能将注意力集中于眼前很少很少的一部分事物 并依赖其做出判断
we can generally only rest and focus on a minuscule part of what is before us.
因为感觉和情绪如潮水般涌入 变得云雾般缭绕迷蒙
There are waves of sensations, fog-banks of moods,
想法、联想与模糊的印象碰撞融合 形成巨大的漩涡
collisions of ideas and swirls of associations and impressions.
而且若把大脑比作电影院 仅有一张电影屏幕的话意识也是无法展开放映的
Consciousness doesn’t just unfold on a single cinema screen of the mind either.
我们可以将大脑想象为一座超级多厅电影院
We can think of it more like a multi, multi-plex
而庞杂的情绪和情感
where a dozen or more moods and emotions
被制作成分离的图片集一次投映出来
are projected at once in a fractured collection of images,
让人联想起难以理解的贴满前卫视频的拼贴画
reminiscent of a puzzling collage of Avant Garde videos.
大多数感受和经历
Most of what we have felt and have been,
都是在我们还没来得及抓住它 仔细观察时就消失不见了
will disappear before it can ever be held and examined.
而且 虽然意识如此丰富多彩
Furthermore, little of the richness of consciousness
但几乎没有多少能出现在公开讨论中
ever makes it out into public discussion.
当我们开口告诉别人诸如
When we open our mouths and tell other people, for example:
我们在想什么或者我们感觉如何的事情时
what we think or how we’re feeling,
除了彻底简化经历的本貌 我们别无选择
we have no option but to radically simplify the nature of experience
就像一名记者用100个字描述了一次战斗或一场政治改革
like a journalist filing a 100 word piece on a battle or political revolution
然后将新闻传递到大洋彼岸 给漠不关心的祖国人民看
to an indifferent, domestic audience a continent away.
我们可能对此只会评论 目前为止我们的生活还很平静 或者 这一刻我们很开心
We might say we’ve had a “quiet day so far” or are “fairly cheerful at the moment.”
普遍的社会礼仪也教我们
And a generous social code means we don’t remind one another
不要对别人强调这种表述会有多不准确
of what an inaccurate portrait this must necessarily be.
谈到为什么我们对意识真正的本质会如此无知
Part of the reason why we’re not quite aware of
文学得负一部分责任
the true nature of consciousness is the fault of literature.
在绝大部分小说中 作者对人物心理活动的描写
In most of the novels we read, characters are attributed an utterly implausible,
都完全不合情理 貌合神离
yet superficially beguiling clarity of mental functioning.
比如颇具影响力的19世纪英国小说家安东尼·特罗洛普
For example: the influential, 19th Century, English novelist: Anthony Trollope,
他喜欢给笔下人物的意识活动来一张“快照”
liked to offer his readers a snapshot of what was supposed to be going on in his characters’ heads.
在小说《菲尼亚斯·芬恩》中 有一个男人当选为议会议员
In his novel: Phineas Finn, a man is elected to parliament
特罗洛普描写了他如何乘坐火车去首都接受任职
and Trollope describes him travelling by train to the capital to take up his post
以及如何心情起伏不定地思考他的政治前景
and musing moodily on his political prospects.
在去伦敦的途中 他产生了很多严肃 甚至是庄重的想法
He had many serious, almost solemn thoughts on his journey to London.
他不确定自己会不会把手上这份伟大的事业搞砸了
He wondered if he would make a failure of the great matter he had taken in hand.
他控制不住告诉自己 搞砸与不搞砸的概率比是一比二十
He could not but tell himself that the chances were twenty to one against.
最后当他又思考这个问题时 困难又变得比以前更大了
Now that he looked at it, the difficulties loomed larger than ever!
特罗洛普用他真挚的描写让我们相信
Trollope gives us the sincere impression that this really is how human beings think
这真的就是人类坐在火车上思考前途的思考过程
when they sit down on trains and consider their futures.
特罗洛普写的这种小说被认为极其“符合现实”
The sort of novels that Trollope wrote have even been described as extremely “realistic”.
然而问题是 毫无疑问从来没有人像特罗洛普一样
And yet the problem is that, of course, no human who has ever existed,
思考到这么深 感受到这么多
actually thinks or feels remotely like this.
直到20世纪初 才有作家开始专注这种透视写法 并加以运用
It took until the early 20th Century of writers to focus on and respond to this foreshortening.
1918年 爱尔兰作家詹姆斯·乔伊斯在他的伟大小说《尤利西斯》中
In 1918, in his great novel Ulysses, the Irish writer James Joyce,
首次运用了这种写法
for the first time, made the move of putting
就像是在小说人物的大脑里放入了扩音器
a kind of microphone inside his characters’ minds
来收集意识 后来这被称为“意识流”
to pick up on what became known as: ‘The Stream of Consciousness’.
这听起来和特罗洛普以及以前的小说家所描述过的完全不同
It sounded radically different from anything Trollope or past novelists had ever described.
《尤利西斯》中有一处描写了女主人公摩莉的意识流
At one point in Ulysses, we hear the stream of consciousness of a heroine Molly
当时是午夜 她正躺在丈夫布卢姆身边
as she lies in bed beside her husband Bloom in the middle of the night.
他在做梦吗
Is he dreaming?
有没有梦到我
Am I in it?
他身上有饮料的气味 不是威士忌 有点像他们用来张贴海报的甜浆糊
He smells of some kind of drink not whiskey perhaps the sweety kind of paste
我想尝尝黄绿色的高档贵饮料 约翰尼的饮料也行
they put posters up with. I’d like to sip green and yellow expensive drinks staged or Johnny’s drink.
我用那根摸过养松鼠的美国人的手指点了一下他的身体 尝了尝
I tasted one with my finger dipped out of that American
他肯定吃了牡蛎
that had the squirrel. He must have eaten oysters.
我这辈子都没遇见过谁有那么令人满足的尺寸
I never in all my life felt anyone had one the size of that to make you feel fuller.
为什么要让我们身体中间有个洞
What’s the idea of making us like that with a big hole in the middle.
我讨厌那些不知道什么时候会来的人 你去开门的时候还没来得及穿衣服
I hate people who come at all hours, answer the door and you’re all undressed.
通过乔伊斯对摩莉细致入微的刻画
We come to know more about our own consciousness
我们对自己的意识也有了更深的了解
via Joyce’s unusual portrait of Molly’s.
摩莉的大脑飞速从这个话题跳到另一个话题 我们的也一样
Like ours, Molly’s mind moves extremely fast from one topic to another.
这一秒还在想利口酒
At one moment she’s thinking about liqueurs,
下一秒就到了在剧院里邂逅的美国人
then about an American she met at the theter then a second later
再下一秒又开始想丈夫是不是吃了牡蛎
she’s wondering if her husband’s been eating oysters.
然后又想到了他的小弟弟 接着又是她自己的身体
Then she thinks about his penis. Then she wonders about her own body.
然后苦恼起那些她还没准备好开门
Then gets irked by the idea of people coming around to the house
就来了她家的人
when she’s not ready to open the door.
其中没有被仔细挖掘的中心主题
There’s no dominant central theme that gets carefully explored.
尽管如此复杂 撇开争论不谈 《尤利西斯》
Despite the monstrous complexity, Ulysses, arguably,
仍然相当于是一种对经历本貌的彻底简化
still amounts to a radical simplification of the true nature of experience.
毕竟这只是用文字堆砌起来的小说 然而我们真正的意识流
After all, the novel exists only as words, wheras our real stream of consciousness includes
却是一种内容随意且彼此之间毫无联系的电影流和画面流
a disjointed and random streaming of films and pictures.
画面在意识间迅速飞过 从不停息
Images constantly flit across consciousness.
有时我们会看到一样东西清晰得惊人
Sometimes we’ll see something extraordinarily specific,
比如27年前的门把手
a door handle from 27 years ago
或者是法国西部运河上泛舟航行的画面
or an image of a boat on a canal in Western France
或是想起自己旅游穿过德国时 坐在火车上往外看风景
or remember looking out of a train on a journey through Germany,
但是没有更多细节和现实意义能解释为什么这些意识会在这时出现在我们脑海中
but there’ll be no further details or real sense as to why this has come into our heads right now.
尽管如此 乔伊斯的创作仍然十分重要
Nevertheless, Joyce’s work is hugely significant
因为他让我们认识到
because it helps us to start to see what we’re up against
当我们试图理解大脑时 会遇到怎样的困难
when we try to understand our own minds.
理解大脑并非探囊取物 那些想法也不是严密地组织好的
It is not a case of just opening up a hatch and finding a welter of well-formulated thoughts.
当我们开始关注自身时
When we turn our attention to ourselves,
我们无法精确地找出清晰的态度或是明确的想法
we won’t be able to locate crystalline attitudes and precise ideas.
我们能找到的只有一片混乱和抽象的思维
We will discover only chaos and illusive thoughts.
更重要的是 在这一混沌的保护层中
More significantly, it’s from this primeval mulch,
我们还必须搜集信息 组织必要的明确而严谨的计划
that we will have to assemble the solid and serious plans
来指导我们该如何存在
we need to navigate through existence.
我们必须选出:我们关心什么
We have to decide: What we care about?
我们该如何设计人生轨道
How we should direct our lives?
应该成为怎样的人
Who we should try to be?
增进对意识流的了解
Knowing more about the stream of consciousness
有利于帮我们打好必要的基础
prepares us for the work that we have to do
好把意识流抽丝剥茧 找出那些适当的 准确的 我们需要的想法
to pull out from the stream, the decent and accurate thoughts we need.
当我们问自己到底在想什么 应该为什么而努力时
The mind won’t automatically yield clear answers when we ask ourselves
大脑不会自动给出一个清晰明了的答案
what we think or where we might direct our energies.
当然 我们都有避繁就简的天性
There can naturally be a temptation to avoid the hard work
适当内省也不是唯一的方法
and there are some alternatives to proper introspection.
大脑内有些内容是连贯的 很容易能抓取到
Some of the content we hold in our minds is coherent and very easy to grasp,
但这有一个明显的缺陷:它不是我们自己的
but it suffers from a marked draw-back: it isn’t really ours.
它是由别人陈腐的想法和计划堆砌而成的长堤
It’s second-hand, stale and a derivative bank of ideas and plans.
我们脑内有些观念
We have certain notions in our heads that come,
不是来自我们内心深处的感觉或直觉
not from our deeper resources of feeling and intuition
而是不加批判地吸收自外部信息
but from what we have sucked in uncritically from outside
比如曾在报纸上读过的文章 从父母和朋友那儿听到的观点
from what we’ve read in the newspaper or heard about from parents or friends.
这些就是:既成之见
These are: our received ideas.
我们甚至都不用费力气反刍
We don’t need to think hard at all to regurgitate them.
我们大脑里已经建好了一个接收室 专门将他们打包装好 时刻准备好发出
They’re just waiting in prepackaged form in the reception room of our minds.
然而 只有那些来自于我们大脑内部隐秘洞穴的深处
An yet, it’s only the thoughts and feelings that are originally unprocessed
还从未被加工处理过的天然想法和感觉
that come from the caverns in ourselves
才是信息最为丰富多彩的部分
that are the ones richest in information.
尽管悲伤的是它们也是最难理解的一部分
Even if they’re also, painfully, the hardest to make sense of.
增进一点对意识流的了解
Knowing a little more about the stream of consciousness
会带领我们发现 大脑这个器官 比我们原来想象得
shows us that our brains are a more delicate, messier organ
更加精密 也更加混乱
than we’re normally allowed to imagine.
很多内省工作其实比我们一贯认为得
Many of the introspective tasks we set ourselves turn out to be more fiddly
更精细 需要更多才略
and are going to need more resources than we typically allow for.
不过掌握了正确的内省方法也能带来非常丰厚的回报
Yet the rewards for mastering introspection correctly are immense.
因为只有彻底了解了自身大脑内部的意识流
For it’s by becoming experts in our own streams of consciousness
我们才能真正理解自己是谁
that we have the chance truly to understand who we are.
才能让生活与内心一致
and thereby to align our lives with the way we really feel
才能设立真正能让我们获得成就感的目标
and with the goals that can truly satisfy us when we reach them.

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视频概述

眼睛在一瞬间接受到的信息比我们感受到的要多得多,因此大脑内部充满了各种庞杂的信息,这就是意识流。意识流也是一种特殊的文学创作手法。那么意识流包括哪些内容?认识它又有什么意义呢?

听录译者

收集自网络

翻译译者

Philovist

审核员

赖皮

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hu9L5zQ4g0Q

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