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  • The common sense explanation for long-term singlehood directs the blame firmly outwards.

    一般會將長期單身的原因歸咎於外在環境。

  • It isolates the problem to one of mechanics: one is still single because one hasn't,

    問題被歸納為:一個人單身是因為他沒有…

  • on account of having moved to the vast and anonymous new city,

    可能因為剛搬到某個大城市,

  • been invited to enough parties, or because the constant requirement to fly to the Singapore office leaves no time for the right sort of socializing,

    受邀參加足夠的派對,或因為經常需要飛到新加坡出差而沒有時間經營社交生活,

  • or because one is holed up in a remote village high in the mountains,

    又或者因為他被困在偏遠山區裡的小鎮,

  • connected to the densely populated lowlands only by an irregular bus service.

    前往人口稠密的市中心的巴士班次不多。

  • These may be solid enough reasons, but when the problem of singlehood persist over an extended period, their power to explain our situation weakens.

    這些理由或許夠充分,但你單身了很長一段時間後,這些理由就有點站不住腳了。

  • Without anything remotely persecutory or unkind being intended by this,

    這麼說沒有任何的迫害或不友善的意圖,

  • one is forced to cast around for psychological rather than procedural explanations.

    但這時不得不探討心理而非外在的原因。

  • The problem must lie in our minds rather than in the world.

    問題肯定是心理因素而不是外界的影響。

  • And in the recesses of these minds, two issues, diametrical yet complimentary, can often be identified.

    在這些人的內心深處,經常會發現兩個對立卻互補的問題根本。

  • One maybe suffering from an excess of self-hatred, or one maybe suffering from an excess of self-love.

    一個人可能過度地自我憎恨或過度地自戀。

  • Self-hatred is the more poignant of the pair.

    相較之下,過度自我憎恨可能更令人心酸。

  • On being approached by someone, however initially attractive and competent they might be,

    每當某人想接近我們,無論最初他們有多吸引人、多適合,

  • we begin to wonder why they should be so naïve, so desperate, and so weak as to be drawn to someone like us.

    我們會開始質疑,為什麼他們這麼天真、飢渴、軟弱,而被我們這樣的人吸引?

  • When we are inadequately convinced of our own likeability,

    當我們不相信自己的魅力時,

  • the attentions of another person must forever seem illegitimate and peculiar, and reflect very poorly on their donor.

    我們會持續地認為別人獻殷勤奇怪又不合理,並對他們的善意做出惡劣的回應。

  • Love feels like a gift we haven't earned, we don't deserve, and must therefore take care, eventually, to throw away.

    愛就像我們不值得獲得的禮物,因此必須小心翼翼地面對,總一天得轉身離開。

  • We might, under the pressure of self-hatred, accuse our admirer of naivety.

    在自我憎恨的壓力下,我們也許會指責仰慕者太天真。

  • The only possible reason they can have to approve of us is that they are poor judges of character.

    他們看上我們的唯一原因是他們不會看人。

  • That's why they've missed all the more disturbed and darker aspects of us.

    所以他們才沒有察覺我們扭曲、黑暗的那一面。

  • They like us only because they are blind, and therefore, a little stupid.

    他們因為太盲目才會喜歡我們,而這有點愚蠢。

  • However, because they are bound to spot their error eventually, it is surely wiser to run away before we are exposed and abandoned.

    然而,因為他們最後肯定會發現他們判斷失誤,所以在我們露出真面目或被拋棄前逃跑是最明智的選擇。

  • We end up alone because despite our longing for affection,

    我們孤獨終老是因為儘管我們渴望愛情,

  • we don't, in essence, feel there are any good and lasting reasons why anyone would properly see us and like us.

    實際上,我們不覺得別人有持續地善待和喜歡我們的合理理由。

  • We may also, in the face of the gifts, the text messages or the hugs we receive,

    我們或許也會,在收到禮物、簡訊和擁抱時,

  • start to feel that our admirer is, to a sickening degree, needy.

    開始覺得仰慕者太黏人,到了令人作嘔的地步。

  • We feel repulsed by their need when we don't see ourselves as appropriate targets of anyone's need.

    當我們認為自己不夠格的時候,我們就會對他們的需求感到厭惡。

  • We reject their nascent dependence because somewhere inside, we are sure that we are not people to depend upon.

    我們抗拒他們萌生的依賴感,因為內心深處我們認為自己不是可以依靠的人。

  • And yet, of course, none of these specters need to be real in the world outside our touchingly troubled minds.

    但是,當然,這些恐懼源自於我們敏感扭曲的內心世界而非真實世界。

  • The person who is keen on us is almost certainly not naïve.

    那些喜愛我們的人並不天真。

  • They can, no doubt, see us for what we are.

    他們當然可以看清我們的本質。

  • They have noticed many of our less admirable sides. It's just that they don't consider these fatal.

    他們發現了許多我們不吸引人的地方。只是他們認為這些缺點沒那麼嚴重。

  • Because they know that being not quite right is what all of us are and is no barrier to a mature relationship.

    因為他們知道大家都不完美,而這不會成為成熟戀情的阻礙。

  • They know we're not exactly who we think we should be,

    他們知道我們不會完全地變成我們心目中理想的那種人,

  • but they also grasp that this doesn't place anyone in the category of the damned.

    但他們也明白,這些不足以把對方視為被詛咒的人。

  • We might be a bit perverted, a little silly, and not as nice as we make out, but so is everyone else.

    我們可能有點扭曲、有點愚蠢、不像我們自以為地那麼好,但大家都一樣。

  • It's not that they are naïve about us. We're ultimately naïve about them.

    所以不是他們的想法太天真,天真的其實是我們。

  • That every human has shadow sides. They've made peace with theirs, probably as a result of a fortunate childhood,

    每個人都有陰暗面,他們學會與其共處,可能是因為他們擁有愉快的童年,

  • they would like us to make peace with ours.

    他們希望我們也能與自己的陰暗面和平共處。

  • Ahead of us, they understand that a person can be ordinarily imperfect and still worthy of being cherished.

    他們比我們更早明白不完美的人也值得被珍惜。

  • Then, at the other end of the spectrum, also responsible for singlehood, comes excessive self-love,

    然後,極度自我厭惡的對應面是極度自戀,

  • which really means a hesitation around fully acknowledging what a challenging proposition one is,

    這意味著要承認某件事具有挑戰性時會相當猶豫。

  • and therefore, how much we should rightly be grateful for when someone, anyone, with an ordinary share of strengths and weaknesses, looks our way.

    因此,當一個平凡的人對我們有興趣時,我們的態度會猶豫不決。

  • Perhaps because of the legacy of doting and forgivably biased parents, we are operating with an unhelpful sense of how lucky someone might be to end up in our arms.

    可能是父母的放縱與溺愛帶來的錯覺,我們認為另一半被我們選中是他三生有幸。

  • After having been alone for a long time,

    單身好一段時間之後,

  • we may also have lost the knack of spotting what peculiar, demanding and compulsive people we are.

    我們可能也無法意識到自己是個奇怪、要求多又有強迫症的人。

  • With no one to hold up a mirror, we have forgotten to give due weight to all the rage, anxiety and moments of vindictiveness inside us.

    由於沒有人可以當我們的鏡子,我們忘記要重視我們心中的憤怒、焦慮、萌生仇恨的時刻。

  • At the same time, we are travelling the world with our imaginations switched off.

    同時,我們看待世界的方式缺乏想像力。

  • Imagination defined here as the capacity to look with energy, compassion and curiosity

    這裡想像力是指用活力、同理心和好奇心

  • into the face and character of another person,

    判斷其他人面貌和性格的能力,

  • in order to search out what might be desirable and good therein.

    以發掘其吸引人、可取的特質。

  • What happens when we look without imagination?

    看待事物缺乏想像力會造成什麼後果?

  • Well, we meet someone who is quite nice, but their nose is too big... No.

    我們認識某個不錯的人,但他的鼻子太大了… 不行。

  • Or they are an engineer, engineers are unsophisticated... No.

    或者對方是工程師,而工程師不懂人情世故… 不行。

  • Maybe they are rich? Rich people are snobs, a "no" too.

    或許對方很有錢?但有錢人都是勢利鬼,還是不行。

  • Perhaps the hair is thinning, and bald people aren't our thing. No. Or they have a strong accent? No.

    可能對方頭髮太少了,頂上無毛的人可不是我們的理想型,不行。或許他們有很重的口音?不行。

  • Imagination means sensitivity to the less obvious things. With imagination, one scans past the surface

    想像力的意思是能敏銳地看出不明顯的事物。富有想像力的人會看穿表象

  • and wonders about what might be worthy inside a fellow human, whom it would, of course,

    並思考一個人的內在價值為何,因為無論對方是誰,

  • always be so easy (yet ultimately so unrewarding) to criticize.

    都能輕易找到可以批評的地方 (但這終究沒有好處)。

  • What happens when we look with imagination? We meet someone, they look conventional and a bit formal.

    我們用想像力進行觀察時會發生什麼事?我們遇到一個人,他看起來很傳統拘謹。

  • But we think they could turn out to have playful and wild sides too.

    但我們會想或許他們有好玩、瘋狂的一面。

  • Or, they look mousy but maybe they're also very witty around people they know well.

    或是他們看起來很膽小,但或許在熟悉的人面前會很風趣。

  • Or, they do have a slightly wonky nose but their eyes are very tender, and their lips, surprisingly sensual.

    或是他們的鼻子有點歪,但他們的眼睛很溫柔、嘴唇異常地性感。

  • Or, they do have a job that sounds unimpressive but their interests are very broad, and they might be the ideal person to go around an antiques market with.

    或是他們的工作聽起來不怎麼樣,但是他們的興趣廣泛,可能是可以一起逛骨董市場的理想人選。

  • To awaken the dormant faculty of the imagination,

    為了喚醒沉睡的想像力,

  • we might, more regularly, perhaps in the street or on the train to work, look at the faces around us,

    我們應該更常看看街上或通勤火車上的人

  • especially the less distinguished or obviously sculpted ones,

    尤其是比較不起眼或看起來特別嚴肅的人,

  • and ask ourselves what there could be to delight in here. There is always going to be something.

    問問自己他們有什麼討人喜歡的地方?肯定會找到優點。

  • For we were all once love-worthy children and remain as much in our depths.

    因為我們都曾是值得被愛的孩子,現在依然如此。

  • Take an experiment. If you were forced to love one of these candidates, choose your favorite gender, what might there be to fall in love with?

    做個實驗吧!如果你被迫愛上其中一個人,根據你的性向,他們有哪些可愛的地方?

  • Practicing imagination is not a compromise, it is the key to love.

    想像力的練習並非妥協,而是收獲愛情的關鍵。

  • For we all have to be considered imaginatively in order to be tolerated and forgiven over the long term by anyone.

    長期而言,每個人都需要有點想像力,才能互相容忍、原諒。

  • By thinking imaginatively, we're not being disloyal to the true ambition of love.

    運用想像力不代表我們沒有尋找真愛的野心。

  • We're stumbling on the essence of what love rightly has to involve.

    我們被「愛的本質應包含什麼」這一點絆住。

  • There'll always be some practical reasons why it proves hard to find a partner.

    總有一些實際的原因可以證明尋找伴侶很難。

  • But if we have worked on our levels of self-love and attenuated the ravages of self-hatred,

    但如果我們努力地在自戀和自恨中找到平衡,

  • an absence of parties or a difficult bus ride to the next town, need never condemn us, long-term, to a life devoid of tenderness and connection.

    就算沒有出席派對或錯過前往市區的巴士,也不會失去享受溫情和建立關係的能力。

  • To learn more about Love, try our book on "How to Find Love,"

    想了解更多有關愛情的資訊,可以參考《How to Find Love》這本書,

  • which explains why we have the "types" we do,

    書中說明了為什麼我們會有喜歡的「類型」,

  • and how our early experiences shape how and whom we love

    以及我們過去的經歷如何影響我們愛的方式和選擇的對象。

The common sense explanation for long-term singlehood directs the blame firmly outwards.

一般會將長期單身的原因歸咎於外在環境。

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為什麼還魯魯的?揭秘我們為何還是單身!(Two Reasons Why We're Still Single)

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    Evangeline 發佈於 2021 年 05 月 14 日
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