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課程來源:TED
     
Lesley Hazleton 談閱讀《古蘭經》
Lesley Hazleton: On reading the Koran
 
講者:Lesley Hazleton
2010年10月演講,2011年1月在TEDxRainier上線
  
翻譯:                劉契良
編輯:                洪曉慧
簡繁轉換:            趙弘
後制:                劉契良
字幕影片後制:        謝旻均
 
 
 
 
 
關於這場演講
某天,Lesley Hazleton 坐下細細品味《古蘭經》,非身為穆斯林且自認只是遊歷這本伊斯蘭聖經中的一位「旅客」,她所發現的結果超乎預期。透過嚴謹的學術研究與暖心的幽默,Hazleton 在這場解構迷思的 TEDxRainier 演講中分享她所發現的優雅、靈活與玄奇。
 
關於 Lesley Hazleton
身為記者且「意外地」成為神學家,Lesley Hazleton 是《After the Prophet: The Epic Story of the Shia-Sunni Split》的作者。
 
 
為何要聽她演講:
學歷是心理學家,經歷是中東特派記者,出生於英國的 Lesley Hazleton 過去十年費心探研宏偉且常是令人生懼的領域,當中,政治與宗教、過去與現在交錯重疊。她的最新著作《After the Prophet: The Epic Story of the Shia-Sunni Split》已贏得 2010 PEN-USA 非小說類大賞。
 
她在耶路撒冷生活與工作了十三年,該城是一只政治與宗教熱鍋,之後,她搬到紐約,並在 1992 年於西雅圖取得飛行員證照,還相中了一間完美的船屋,從此定居下來。到了 1994 年,她已花光了所有積蓄,但絲毫不後悔。現在,她的船屋滿載下本著作《The First Muslim》的研究資料,該書將重新檢視穆罕默德的一生。
 
「非常有趣的論點,她的演講激勵了我閱讀與學習更多《古蘭經》的教義,讓我可以自行評斷,而無需透過充滿仇恨的二手資訊」。
Alan Klein 於 Informed Comment 上的評論,juancole.com
 
Lesley Hazleton 的英語網上資料
 
[TED科技娛樂設計]
已有中譯字幕的TED影片目錄(繁體)(簡體)。請注意繁簡目錄是不一樣的。
 
「翻譯編輯:myoops.org
 
各位也許都聽過《古蘭經》中的天堂概念,關於 72 處女,我向各位承諾待會兒會回頭講那些處女,但事實上,我們所處的美國西北,我們的居處非常地接近真正《古蘭經》式的天堂概念,經定義 36 次,「細水潺流的花園」,也因為我就住在聯合湖流域的一間船屋上,所以這等解釋再適切不過,但問題是,為何這對大部份的人而言卻是種新聞?我知道有不少心存良善的非穆斯林,他們試過閱讀《古蘭經》,但終究放棄,因為受困於其特異性,歷史學家 Thomas Carlyle 認為穆罕默德是世上最偉大的英雄之一,但連他都認為《古蘭經》是,「我所試圖讀過最勞神、無聊且令人困惑的混沌著作」(笑聲),我認為,其中一個原因是我們想像中的《古蘭經》可以像我們平常讀書一樣來讀,好似,我們可以在一個下雨的午后蜷曲於沙發上,旁置一盆爆米花,好似上帝,《古蘭經》只是上帝針對穆罕默德講話,而上帝就只像是另一本暢銷書的作者,事實是僅少數人確實正確閱讀《古蘭經》,而這正是為何它這麼容易被引用,正確來說是誤引,從文章中截取片語與斷句,我稱此為「標明版本」,這極受穆斯林基本教義派與反穆斯林之恐伊斯蘭人士的喜愛,去年春天當我準備好開始書寫穆罕默德自傳,我瞭解到我需要合宜地閱讀《古蘭經》,盡我所能地合宜閱讀,我的阿拉伯語能力已退化到需要倚靠字典,因此,我選了四種普遍的翻譯,並決定對比著閱讀,逐句地,依著轉譯,對比著七世紀的原始阿拉伯文,我佔便宜的地方是我的上一本書談及有關什葉派與遜尼派分裂背後的故事,我已仔細研究過最早的伊斯蘭歷史,所以,我清楚那些《古蘭經》經常提及的事件,其參考的框架,我清楚地瞭解到我不過是途經《古蘭經》的旅客,一位所知甚詳的旅客,甚至可說是一位經歷豐富的旅客,但仍是外人一位,一位不可知論的猶太人閱讀他人的聖經(笑聲),因此,我慢慢地讀(笑聲)。
 
 
我設定在三週內完成這個專案,那可會是一項驕傲的事績(笑聲),結果,我花了三個月的時間,我忍住了跳到末章的誘惑,那是較短且清楚是神秘章節的所在,但每當我自認開始能夠掌握《古蘭經》的經義,那種「我現在懂了」的感覺會在隔夜頓逝,當清晨醒來,我臆想著自己是否已迷失在陌生異地,但周遭卻是異常熟悉,《古蘭經》宣示它要更新摩西五書與福音書的神訊,所以,書中三分之一重複著基督聖經中的角色,像是亞伯拉罕、摩西、約瑟、瑪琍與耶穌,上帝本身極為熟悉,從其早期現身為耶和華,排外的宣示再無二神,駱駝、山丘、沙漠水井與源泉的出現將我帶回生活在遊走於西奈沙漠的年代,再者是語言,帶有節奏韻律,使我憶起那些傾聽貝都音老者,口述幾個小時詩選的夜晚,全從我記憶中湧現,我開始領會到,為何人們會說《古蘭經》僅有以阿拉伯文書寫才是真正的《古蘭經》,舉首章「法諦海」為例,七節經文,那不只是真主祝禱,更像結合了伊斯蘭的猶太禱告,阿拉伯文版僅有 29 個字,但翻譯卻多達 65 到 72 個字,翻得愈長,失真程度愈大,阿拉伯文版有咒語,幾近催眠,其本質為邀人傾聽而非閱讀,感受超越分析,最好是能大聲唱頌,讓雙耳與舌頭聆聽其玄妙樂音,英文版的《古蘭經》像是原版的影子,或如 Arthur Arberry 所謂的「解譯」,但卻未因譯失真,因為《古蘭經》應允,耐心得福報,還有更多的驚奇,像是多少對環境的關注,人類只不過是真主創造的看護人,與聖經所言有所不同,聖經單針對男性敘述,使用第二及第三人稱的陽性詞彙,《古蘭經》卻包含女性,舉例而言,信男信女,高貴的男女,或像是聲名狼藉談論屠殺異端的經文,Yes,有此一段,但僅於特定段落可見,在預期攻克聖城麥加時,聖城禁止打鬥,而屠殺卻得到有限制的應許,未必定要殺死麥加城內的異端,但殺戮確實得到首肯,不過僅在寬限期之後,且不存在任何其他的條約,且僅在異端試圖阻撓向卡巴天房朝覲時,且是對方先動手,雖說上帝仁慈,寬恕常是極致,就算如此,最好還是不要輕易嘗試(笑聲)。
 
 
最大的驚奇可能是《古蘭經》的靈活,至少其精神並非根本不靈活的,《古蘭經》內載一些具明確意義的經文,但也有些是模稜兩可,心中的邪念會尋出那些模稜兩可並試圖產生不和諧,方法是透過確定其自身的意義,僅有真主知道真義,「真主難以捉摸」的詞句不斷出現,沒錯,整部《古蘭經》更是難以捉摸,其程度超過我們信仰的範圍,像是較微細的處女與天堂等內容,老派的東方主義在此有其影響力,用了四次的字是天堂女神,譯文解作擁有豐胸的黑眼少女,或說,擁有高聳乳房的處女,但阿拉伯原文卻僅那麼一個形容:天堂女神,未見豐胸或高聳乳房等詞彙(笑聲),這可能是一種形容,純潔的說法,像是形容天使或像是希臘文 Kouros 或 Kor,用以形容永恆青春,但沒人知道實情為何,而這正是重點所在,因為《古蘭經》十分清楚地表述,各位將在天堂獲得新生,重生成一種未知的形式,對我而言,這點更具魅力,相較於處女觀點(笑聲),而數目 72 從未出現過,72 處女並未出現在《古蘭經》,此等說法僅在 300 年後才出現,大部份的伊斯蘭學者視其等同於靜坐雲上的翼人,祂們彈著豎琴,天堂的景像迵異,那裡並非處女所居,但卻豐饒、富庶,那是一處花園,細水潺流而過,感謝聆聽。
 
(掌聲)
 

以下為系統擷取之英文原文

About this talk

Lesley Hazleton sat down one day to read the Koran. And what she found -- as a non-Muslim, a self-identified "tourist" in the Islamic holy book -- wasn't what she expected. With serious scholarship and warm humor, Hazleton shares the grace, flexibility and mystery she found, in this myth-debunking talk from TEDxRainier.

About Lesley Hazleton

Journalist and "accidental theologist" Lesley Hazleton is the author of "After the Prophet: The Epic Story of the Shia-Sunni Split." Full bio and more links

Transcript

You may have heard about the Koran's idea of paradise being 72 virgins. And I promise I will come back to those virgins. But in fact, here in the northwest, we're living very close to the real Koranic idea of paradise, defined 36 times as "gardens watered by running streams." Since I live on a houseboat on the running stream of Lake Union, this makes perfect sense to me. But the thing is, how come it's news to most people? I know many well-intentioned non-Muslims who've begun reading the Koran, but given up, disconcerted by its otherness. The historian Thomas Carlyle considered Muhammad one of the world's greatest heroes, yet even he called the Koran, "As toilsome reading as I ever undertook, a wearisome, confused jumble."

(Laughter)

Part of the problem, I think, is that we imagine that the Koran can be read as we usually read a book -- as though we can curl up with it on a rainy afternoon with a bowl of popcorn within reach, as though God -- and the Koran is entirely in the voice of God speaking to Muhammad -- were just another author on the best-seller list. Yet the fact that so few people do actually read the Koran is precisely why it's so easy to quote -- that is, to misquote. Phrases and snippets taken out of context in what I call the highlighter version, which is the one favored by both Muslim fundamentalists and anti-Muslim Islamophobes.

So this past spring, as I was gearing up to begin writing a biography of Muhammad, I realized I needed to read the Koran properly -- as properly as I could, that is. My Arabic's reduced by now to wielding a dictionary, so I took four well-known translations and decided to read them side-by-side, verse-by-verse along with a transliteration and the original seventh century Arabic. Now I did have an advantage. My last book was about the story behind the Shia-Sunni split, and for that I'd worked closely with the earliest Islamic histories, so I knew the events to which the Koran constantly refers, its frame of reference. I knew enough, that is, to know that I'd be a tourist in the Koran -- an informed one, an experienced one even, but still an outsider, an agnostic Jew reading some else's holy book. (Laughter) So I read slowly. (Laughter) I'd set aside three weeks for this project, and that, I think is what is meant by hubris. (Laughter) Because it turned out to be three months. I did resist the temptation to skip to the back where the shorter and more clearly mystical chapters are.

But every time I thought I was beginning to get a handle on the Koran -- that feeling of "I get it now" -- it would slip away overnight. And I'd come back in the morning wondering if I wasn't lost in a strange land. And yet the terrain was very familiar. The Koran declares that it comes to renew the message of the Torah and the Gospels. So one-third of it reprises the stories of Biblical figures like Abraham, Moses, Joseph, Mary, Jesus. God himself was utterly familar from his earlier manifestation as Yahweh -- jealously insisting on no other gods. The presence of camels, mountains, desert wells and springs took me back to the year I spent wandering the Sinai Desert. And then there was the language, the rhythmic cadence of it, reminding me of evenings spent listening to Bedouin elders recite hours-long narrative poems entirely from memory. And I began to grasp why it's said that the Koran is really the Koran only in Arabic.

Take the Faatihah, the seven-verse opening chapter that is the Lord's prayer and the Shema Israel of Islam combined. It's just 29 words in Arabic, but anywhere from 65 to 72 in translation. And yet the more you add, the more seems to go missing. The Arabic has an incantatory, almost hypnotic, quality that begs to be heard rather than read, felt more than analyzed. It wants to be chanted out loud, to sound its music in the ear and on the tongue. So the Koran in English is a kind of shadow of itself, or as Arthur Arberry called his version, "an interpretation." But all is not lost in translation.

As the Koran promises, patience is rewarded, and there are many surprises -- a degree of environmental awareness for instance and of humans as mere stewards of God's creation, unmatched in the Bible. And where the Bible is addressed exclusively to men, using the second and third person masculine, the Koran includes women -- talking, for instance, of believing men and believing women -- honorable men and honorable women. Or take the infamous verse about killing the unbelievers. Yes, it does say that, but in a very specific context: the anticipated conquest of the sanctuary city of Mecca where fighting was usually forbidden. And the permission comes hedged about with qualifiers. Not, you must kill unbelievers in Mecca, but you can, you are allowed to, but only after a grace period is over and only if there's no other pact in place and only if they try to stop you getting to the Kaaba, and only if they attack you first. And even then -- God is merciful, forgiveness is supreme -- and so, essentially, better if you don't. (Laughter) This was perhaps the biggest surprise -- how flexible the Koran is, at least in minds that are not fundamentally inflexible.

"Some of these verses are definite in meaning," it says, "and others are ambiguous. The perverse at heart will seek out the ambiguities trying to create discord by pinning down meanings of their own. Only God knows the true meaning." The phrase "God is subtle" appears again and again. And indeed, the whole of the Koran is far more subtle than most of us have been led to believe. As in, for instance, that little matter of virgins and paradise. Old-fashioned orientalism comes into play here. The word used four times is Houris, rendered as dark-eyed maidens with swelling breasts, or as fair, high-bosomed virgins. Yet all there is in the original Arabic is that one word: Houris. Not a swelling breast nor a high bosom in sight. (Laughter) Now this may be a way of saying pure beings -- like in angels -- or it may be like the Greek Kouros or Kórē, an eternal youth.

But the truth is nobody really knows, and that's the point. Because the Koran is quite clear when it says that you'll be "a new creation in paradise" and that you will be "recreated in a form unknown to you," which seems to me a far more appealing prospect than a virgin. (Laughter) And that number 72 never appears. There are no 72 virgins in the Koran. That idea only came into being 300 years later, and most Islamic scholars see it as the equivalent of people with wings sitting on clouds and strumming harps. Paradise is quite the opposite. It's not virginity, it's fecundity, it's plenty, it's gardens watered by running streams.

Thank you.

(Applause)
 


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有關本課程的討論

課程討論
This is an amazing speech!

michyhuang, 2011-07-04 12:04:12
課程討論
智慧之言 文詞很高水準
Anonymous, 2011-04-01 14:15:47
課程討論
結合了禱告邀人傾聽
Anonymous, 2011-03-28 10:33:18

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