Extracts from “The Three-Body Problem”(bilingual)

2016年07月23日

  《三体》选读

  Eighty-five thousand Trisolaran hours (about 8.6 Earth years) later八万五千三体时(约8.6个地球年)后The princeps had ordered an emergency meeting of all Trisolaran consuls. This was very unusual. Something important must have happened.

  元首下令召开三体世界全体执政官紧急会议,这很不寻常,一定有什么重大的事件发生。

  Twenty thousand Trisolaran hours ago. the Trisolaran Fleet had launched. The ships knew the approximate directions of their target but not its distance. It was possible tha the target was millions of light-hours away, or even at the other end of the galaxy. Faced with the endless sea of stars, the expedition had little hope.

  两万三体时前,三体舰队启航了,它们只知道目标的大致方向,却不知道它的距离。也许,目标处于千万光时之外,甚至在银河系的另一端,面时着前方茫茫的星海,这是一次希望渺茫的远征。

  The meeting of consuls occurred under the Pendulum Monument. [As Wang Miao read about this episode, he couldn't help but recall the session at the UN Building in the Three Body game. In reality, the Pendulum Monument was one of the few objects in the game that really did exist on Trisolaris.

  执政官会议在巨摆纪念碑下举行。(汪淼在阅读这一段信息时,不由联想到《三体》游戏中的联合国大会,事实上,巨摆纪念碑是游戏中少数在三体世界中真实存在的事物之一。)

  The princeps's choice of meeting site confused most of the attendees. The Chaotic Era wasn't over yet, and a small sun had just risen over the horizen, though it could also set at any moment. The temperature was cold, and all the attendees were forced to wear fully enclosed electric-heating suits. The massive metal pendulum swung magnificenlty, pounding the friged air. The small sun cast a long shadow against the ground, as if a giant whose head touched the sky were striding there. Under the watchful eyes of the crowd, the princepsascended onto the base of the pendulum and flipped a red switch.

  元首选定这个会址,令大多数与会者迷惑不解。乱纪元还没有结束,天边刚刚升起了一轮很小的太阳,随时都可能落下,天气异常寒冷,以至于与会者不得不穿上全封闭的电热服。巨大的金属摆气势磅礴地摆动着,冲击着寒冷的空气,天边的小太阳把它的影子长长地投射到大地上,像一个顶天立地的巨人在行走。众目睽睽之下,元首走上巨摆的基座,扳动了一个红色的开关,转身对执政官们说:He turned to the consuls and said, “I have just shut off power to the pendulum. It will gradually stop under the influence of air resistance.”

  “我刚刚关闭了巨摆的动力电源,它将在空气阻力下慢慢地停下来。”

  “Princeps, why?” a consul asked.

  “元首,为什么这样?”一位执政官问。

  “We all understand the historical significance of the pendulum. It's intended to hypnotize God. But now we know it's better for Trisolaran civilization to have God awake, becuase God is now blessing us.”

  “我们都清楚巨摆的历史涵义,它是用来对上帝进行催眠的。现在我们知道,上帝醒着对三体文明更有利,它开始保佑我们了。”

  Everyone was silent, pondering the meaning of the princeps's words. After three more swings from the pendulum, someone asked, “Has the Earth responded?”

  众人沉默了,思索着元首这话的含义。在巨摆摆动了三次之后,有人问:“地球文明回电了?”

  The princeps nodded. “Yes. Half an hour ago I received the report. It was a response to the warning that was sent.”

  元首点点头,“是的,半个三体时前我得到的报告,是回答那条警告信息的。”

  “So soon! Only eighty thousand hours have passed since then, which means…which means…”

  “这么快?!现在距警告信息发出仅八万多时,这就是说,这就是说……”

  “Which means that the Earth is only forty thousand light-hours from us.”

  “这就是说,地球文明距我们仅四万光时。”

  “Isn't that the closest star from here.”

  “那不就是距离我们最近的那颗恒星吗?!”

  “Yes. That is why I said God is blessing Trisolaran civilization.”

  “是的,所以我说:上帝在保佑三体文明。”

  The attendees grew ecstatic, but they couldn't express the feeling, so the crowd seemed like a pent-up volcano. The princeps knew that allowing such weak emotions to explode would be dangerous. So he poured cold water on their sentiments. “I have already ordered the Trisolaran Fleet to turn toward this star. But things are not quite as optimistic as you think. Given what we know, right now the fleet is sailing toward certain death.”

  狂喜在会场上蔓延开来,但又不能充分表现,像被压抑的火山。元首知道,让这种脆弱的情绪爆发出来是有害的,于是,他立刻对“火山”泼了盆冷水:“我已经命令三体舰队航向这颗恒星,但事情并不如你们想象的那样乐观,照目前的情况看,舰队是在航向自己的坟墓。”

  The consuls calmed down.

  元首这话使执政官们立刻冷静下来。

  “Does anyone understand my conclusion?”

  “有人明白我的意思吗?”元首问。

  “I do,” said the science consul. “We've all studied the first messages from Earth carefully. The sections most worthy of attention is their history. Let's observe the facts: Humans took more than a hundred thousand Earth years to pregress from the Hunter-Gatherer Age to the Agricultural Age. To get from the Agricultural Age to the Industrili Age took a few thousand Earth years. But to go from the Industril Age to the Atomic Age took only two hundred Earth years. Thereafter, in only a few Earth decades, they entered the Information Age. The civilization possesses the terrifying ability to accelerate their progress.

  “我明白。”科学执政官说,“我们都仔细研究过第一批收到的地球信息,其中最值得注意的是他们的文明史。请看以下事实:人类从狩猎时代到农业时代,用了十几万地球年时间;从农业时代到工业时代用了几千地球年;而由工业时代到原子时代,只用了二百地球年;之后,仅用了几十个地球年,他们就进入了信息时代。这个文明,其有可怕的加速进化能力!

  “On Trisolaris, of the more than two hundred civilizations, including our own,none has ever experenced such accelerating development. The progress of science and technology in all Trisolaran civilizations has been at a constant or decelerating pace. In our world, each technology age requires approximately the same amount of time for steady, slow development.”

  而在三体世界,已经存在过的包括我们在内的二百个文明中,没有一个经历过这种加速发展,所有的三体文明的科学和技术的进步都是匀速甚至减速的。我们世界的各个技术时代,都需要基本相同的漫长的发展时间。”

  The princeps nodded. “The fact is that four million and five hundred thousand hours from now, when the Trisolaran Fleet has reached the Earth, that civilization's technology level will have long surpassed ours, due to their accelerating development. The journey of the Trisolaran Fleet is long and arduous, and the fleet must pass through two interstellar dust belts. It's very likely that only half of ships wil reach the Earth's solar system, while the rest perish along the way. And then, the Trisolaran Fleet will be at the mercy of a much more powerful Earth civilization. This is not an expdetion, but a funeral procession!”

  元首接着说:“现实是,在四百五十万时后,当三体舰队到达地球所在的行星系时,那个文明的技术水平已在加速发展中远超过我们!三体舰队经过那么漫长的航行,中间还要穿越两条星际尘埃带,很可能只有一半的飞船到达太阳系,其余的将损失在漫长的航程中。到那时,三体舰队在地球文明面前将不堪一击——我们不是去远征,是去送死!”

  “But if this is true, Princeps, then there are even more frightening consequences…” the ilitary consul said.

  “如果真是这样,元首,还有更可怕的……”军事执政官说。

  “Yes. It's easy to imagine. The location of Trisolaris has been exposed. To eliminate future threats, an interstellar fleet from Earth will launche a counterattack against us. It's very possible that long before an expanded sun swallows this planet, Trisolaran civilization will have already been extinguished by humans.”

  “是的,这很容易想到。三体文明的位置已经暴露,为了消除未来的威胁,地球的星际舰队将反攻我们的星系。很可能,在膨胀的太阳把这颗行星吞没之前,三体文明已经被地球人消灭了。”

  The bright future had suddenly turned impossibly grim. The attendees fell silent.

  光明灿烂的前景突然变得如此黯淡,使会场沉默了好久。

  The princeps said, “What we must do next is contain the progress of science on Earth. Luckily, as soon as we received the first messages from Earth, we began to develop plans to do so. As of now, we've discovered a favorable condition fro realizing these plans: The response we just received was sent by an Earth traitor. Thus, we have reason to believe tha there are many alienated forces within Earth civilization, and we must exploit such forces to the fullest.”

  元首说:“我们下一步要做的,就是遏制地球文明的科学发展。早在收到第一批信息时,我们就开始制定这方面的计划。现在,实现这些计划出现了一个很有利的条件:我们这次收到的回答信息,是由地球文明的一个背叛者发出的,那么我们有理由猜测,地球文明的内部存在着相当多的异己力量,我们要充分利用这种力量。”

  “Princeps, that is not at all easy. We have but a thin thread of conmmunication with the Earth. It takes more than eighty thousand hours to complete an exchange.”

  “元首,谈何容易,我们与地球的联系细若游丝,八万多时才能完成一次应答。”

  “But remember that, like us, the knowledge that there are extrterrestrial civilizations will shock all of Earth society and leave profoud marks. We have reason to believe tha the alienated forces within Earth civilization will coalesce and grwo.”

  “也不尽然,同我们一样,地球世界得知外星文明的存在对整个社会来说是一个巨大的冲击,将对文明内部产生深远影响。我们有理由预测,地球文明内部的异己力量将汇集和增长。”

  “What can they do? Sabotage?”

  “那他们能做什么呢?进行破坏吗?”

  “Given a time gap of forty thousand hours, the strategic value of any traditional tactics of war or terror is insignificant, and they can recover from them. To effectivley contain a civilization's develpment and disarm it across such a long span of time, there is only one way: kill its science.”

  “在长达四万时的时间跨度上,任何传统的战争和恐怖活动的战略意义都不大,都可以得到恢复。在这样长的时间跨度上,要想有效遏制一个文明的发展,解除其武装,办法只有一个,杀死它们的科学。

  The science consul said, “The plan focused on emphasizing the negative environmental effects of scientific development and showing signs of supernatural power to the population of Earth. In addition to highlighting the negative effects of progress, we'll also attempt to use a series of 'miracles‘ to constcut an illusory universe that cannot be explained by the logic of science. After these illusions have been maintained for some time, it's possible that Trisolaran civilization may become a target of religious worship there. Then, unscientific ways of thinking will dominate scientific thinking among human intellectuals, and lead to the collapse of the entire scientific system of thought.”

  “第一个计划代号‘染色’。”科学执政官说,“利用科学和技术产生的副作用,使公众对科学产生恐惧和厌恶,比如我们世界中技术发展导致的环境问题,想必在地球上也存在,染色计划将充分利用这此因素。第二个计划代号‘神迹’。即对地球人进行的超自然力量的展示,这个计划力图通过一系列的‘神迹’,建造一个科学逻辑无法解释的虚假宇宙。当这种假象持续一定时间后,将有可能使三体文明在那个世界成为宗教信徒的崇拜对象,在地球的思想界,非科学的思维方式就会压倒科学思维,进而导致整个科学思想体系的崩溃。”

  “How do we create miracles?”

  “如何产生神迹呢?”

  “The key to miracles is that they cannot be seen as tricks. This may require that we tranfer certain technologies far above current human technology level to the alienated forces on Earth.”

  “神迹之所以成为神迹,关键在于它是地球人绝对无法识破的。这可能需要我们向地球异己力量输入一些高于他们现有水平的技术。


  双语:《三体》经典选读


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《Threebody》 The Living Theatre in Beijing --(刘慈欣作品《三体》舞台剧八月登陆京城)Review -- “The Three-body Problem”(bilingual)

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