11
一月

永恆的聖誕文告

作者 : 雅帆   在 國際視野 A Global View

根據傳統,英國歷代君主會在聖誕日 (Christmas Day) 格林尼治時間 (GMT) 下午三時向全國及英聯邦人民廣播聖誕文告 (The Christmas Broadcast),去年(2007年)已是第七十六屆;1956年及之前共二十五次祇有電台廣播,1957年開始加入電視廣播, 1999年開始再加入在互聯網上 (即透過英國廣播公司電視新聞網頁;BBC News website) 廣播。

英女王伊利沙伯二世 (Queen Elizabeth II) 對於使用資訊科技與時俱進,據說自己日常便有使用iPod及手提電話;最近並在視頻分享網站「Youtube」設立一個「王室頻道 — 英國王室官方頻道 (The Royal Channel- the Official Channel of the British Monarchy)」的網頁,網址是:http://www.youtube.com/theroyalchannel,選取英國王室成員一些活動的視像錄影片段,上載於該網頁,供世界各地人士欣賞。去年的聖誕文告,亦已同時在電台、電視、互聯網及 Youtube 王室頻道網頁進行廣播。

在 Youtube 王室頻道網頁,英國王室特別從過去五十次的文告錄影中,選取上載了1957年的聖誕文告;並剪輯了該文告的開始及結尾片段,作為去年文告的開始及結尾片段。1957年的文告除了是第一次加入電視影像廣播外,究竟有何特別之處?

雅帆重溫網上視像廣播並細讀1957年的英女王聖誕文告,深感其內容宣揚的一些普世價值,包括:「接納變化新意的同時,不忘保留精彩故舊」,並非祇局限適用於當年的英國,確實是放諸四海而皆準,超越時空,字字珠璣,值得上載於 Youtube 皇室頻道網頁,供世界各地人士重溫。雅帆稱此文告為「永恆的聖誕文告」,又嘗試繙譯其中可供細味的文句,列述如下:

「今天你們能夠透過電視廣播,即時得見我的容貌,正是周圍事物在迅速改變的最佳例證。我並不驚訝於這些改變能使人們感到迷失,未能決定那些事物需要保持?那些應該摒棄?如何可以適應新生活而無須失去精彩故舊?」

「接受創新發明並非困難所在,問題在於不假思索的人們,漫不經心地把一些歷時不渝的理想價值,當作古舊過時的事物體制,輕易捨棄。」

「他們把宗教信仰棄置一旁;道德操守在個人及社羣活動變成全無意義;誠實不欺視作愚蠢行為;自我利益取代自我約束。」

「假若我們放棄這些帶領創造偉大國家和英聯邦的基本原則,我們將在身處歷史的重要時刻,喪失世界對我們的信任和尊重。」

「今天,我們需要一種特殊勇氣,這並非戰爭的勇氣,而是一種敢於挺身而出去明辨是非、維護真理和保持誠實的道德勇氣。我們需要這一種勇氣,去成為雖飽受冷嘲熱諷而仍然抗拒貪污腐敗的中流砥柱,在世人面前展示我們無懼於未來的挑戰。」

「仇恨與摧毁事物易如反掌;建設與珍惜事物卻往往難於實踐 … …」

作為英國前殖民地的香港,最近在構築創新基建與保育古舊傳統方面發生許多衝突,天星鐘樓與皇后碼頭遭受清拆的厄運,讓路與都市的現代化基建。反觀其前宗主國的英國,卻在建築新設施的同時,不忘盡量保存古舊面貌與傳統,甚或需要大幅增加新舊設施並存的建築經費,亦在所不惜。最近英國在倫敦重建棄置多年並曾考慮拆卸最終獲得一級文物保留的聖潘克勒斯國際車站 (St. Pancras International),透過翻新與翻修工程,保存了歷史悠久維多利亞時代哥德式建築 (Victorian Gothic architecture) 的紅磚外牆和古老車站大鐘 (St. Pancras Station Clock) (見網誌56〈智者的忠誠續篇〉附圖一),融入成為新車站部份,就是最佳例證。

誠然,保育古舊和維持傳統與否,取決於人們對精彩故舊的價值觀。拆舊建新,確實省時、省力、省經費;建新包容保舊卻是耗時、費力、加支出。雅帆同意並非所有古舊與傳統都要保留,應該有所取捨,經過拋開私利、深思熟慮之後,在創新與保舊之間找出適當包容點;切忌不假思索,便將精彩故舊輕易捨棄。

從高檔次的推展保育古舊,回歸到日常生活的實踐公民責任,香港人的表現亦頗值得反思。年前曾有港人旅行團在埃及發生車禍,途經的其他港人旅行團車隊飛馳而過,並未有停下救援;當時就有「由於事發地點治安惡劣,不宜停車援助」或「這些不顧而去的車隊並非港人旅行團」等辯解。近日香港又有少女遭遇車禍,肇事司機不顧而去,途經的其他司機同樣飛馳而過,並未有及早報警和停下救援,結果導致少女失救死亡。類似缺乏公民責任或見死不救的行為,不斷重演;香港人對一些普世價值的態度,是否應該加以反省?

在現今世界,汰弱留強,推陳出新,時間的巨輪推動着各種創新基建與思潮,促進社會現代化。未知人類千百年來累積的經驗和理想價值,能否抗拒時代的洪流,屹立不倒?世上可有永恆的普世價值?

雅帆覺得1957年英女王聖誕文告的內容歷久常新,是向其子民推行國民教育的最佳素材;對於世人亦是發人深省,寓意深遠。現輯錄全文如下,供各讀者細閱–

The Queen’s 1957 Christmas Broadcast was an historic event, as it was the first to be televised. It was also the 25th anniversary of the first Christmas Broadcast on the radio. The broadcast was made live from the Long Library at Sandringham, Norfolk.

Happy Christmas,

Twenty-five years ago my grandfather broadcast the first of these Christmas messages. Today is another landmark because television has made it possible for many of you to see me in your homes on Christmas Day. My own family often gather round to watch television as they are this moment, and that is how I imagine you now.

I very much hope that this new medium will make my Christmas message more personal and direct.

It is inevitable that I should seem a rather remote figure to many of you. A successor to the Kings and Queens of history; someone whose face may be familiar in newspapers and films but who never really touches your personal lives. But now at least for a few minutes I welcome you to the peace of my own home.

That it is possible for some of you to see me today is just another example of the speed at which things are changing all around us. Because of these changes I am not surprised that many people feel lost and unable to decide what to hold on to and what to discard. How to take advantage of the new life without losing the best of the old.

But it is not the new inventions which are the difficulty. The trouble is caused by unthinking people who carelessly throw away ageless ideals as if they were old and outworn machinery.

They would have religion thrown aside, morality in personal and public life made meaningless, honestly counted as foolishness and self-interest set up in place of self-restraint.

At this critical moment in our history we will certainly lose the trust and respect of the world if we just abandon those fundamental principles which guided the men and women who built the greatness of this country and Commonwealth.

Today we need a special kind of courage, not the kind needed in battle but a kind which makes us stand up for everything that we know is right, everything that is true and honest. We need the kind of courage that can withstand the subtle corruption of the cynics so that we can show the world that we are not afraid of the future.

It has always been easy to hate and destroy. To build and to cherish is much more difficult. That is why we can take a pride in the new Commonwealth we are building.

This year Ghana and Malaya joined our brotherhood. Both these countries are now entirely self-governing. Both achieved their new status amicably and peacefully.

This advance is a wonderful tribute to the efforts of men of goodwill who have worked together as friends, and I welcome these two countries with all my heart.

Last October I opened the new Canadian Parliament, and as you know this was the first time that any Sovereign had done so in Ottawa. Once again I was overwhelmed by the loyalty and enthusiasm of my Canadian people.

Also during 1957 my husband and I paid visits to Portugal, France, Denmark and the United States of America. In each case the arrangements and formalities were managed with great skill but no one could have ‘managed’ the welcome we received from the people.

In each country I was welcomed as Head of the Commonwealth and as your representative. These nations are our friends largely because we have always tried to do our best to be honest and kindly and because we have tried to stand up for what we believe to be right.

In the old days the monarch led his soldiers on the battlefield and his leadership at all times was close and personal.

Today things are very different. I cannot lead you into battle, I do not give you laws or administer justice but I can do something else, I can give you my heart and my devotion to these old islands and to all the peoples of our brotherhood of nations.

I believe in our qualities and in our strength, I believe that together we can set an example to the world which will encourage upright people everywhere.

I would like to read you a few lines from ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’, because I am sure we can say with Mr Valiant for Truth, these words:

“Though with great difficulty I am got hither, yet now I do not repent me of all the trouble I have been at to arrive where I am. My sword I give to him that shall succeed me in my pilgrimage and my courage and skill to him that can get it. My marks and scars I carry with me, to be a witness for me that I have fought his battles who now will be my rewarder."

I hope that 1958 may bring you God’s blessing and all the things you long for.

And so I wish you all, young and old, wherever you may be, all the fun and enjoyment, and the peace of a very happy Christmas.

備註:上文的聖誕文告輯錄自英國王室網頁,網址是:http://www.royal.gov.uk/output/Page4609.asp,謹此鳴謝。

這篇文章發表 於 星期五, 一月 11th, 2008 1:51 上午 在 國際視野 A Global View. 你可以回應這篇文章透過 RSS 2.0 feed. 你可以 留下回覆, 或 引用 從你的個人網站.

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