An ode to living on Earth

そもそもなんで僕たちは地球に住んでいるんだ?

日本では、社会のシステムや、会社のシステムなどに、疑問を口に出すことがはばかられる雰囲気がありますね。

理由としては、日本や日本語には、集団のあり方にたいして、根源的な疑問を投げかける人は従順でない=道理をわきまえない、無礼、親不孝、といった風潮があるから、でしょう。

沢山の、いろいろな、英語スピーチをみて、声にだして読んでみましょう。私達の学習や仕事の楽しみ、生き甲斐、ワクワクは、新しいことを発見し、楽しんでやってみて、世界をよいものに変えていくことなのです。古くて大きい組織的なもの、硬直的なシステムに忖度し、なにもできない、それは他人や目上の人のせい、それが続いていくのは、尊敬でも美しいことでもありません。愚すぎる事と、愚かすぎる人々と、何もできない連鎖です。昔からのうまくいかない考え・教えも、今、思い切ってアップデートしてゆくこと、それが今を生き、未来につながるより良い生き方につながっていくでしょう。

(やや長い・中学生・高校生・大学生, An ode to living on Earth | Oliver Jeffers TED動画 
動画や内容が面白い視点を与えてくれます。宇宙や自然の単語が豊富です。
Youtube/TED https://youtu.be/zpn6MCmoK0g )

Hello.


I'm sure / by the time / I get to end of this sentence , given how I talk , you'll all have figured out / that I'm from a place called planet Earth.

Earth is pretty great.

It's home to us and germs(細菌など).

Those germs take a back seat(後ろの席に座っている) / for the time being(当面は) , because believe it or not , they're not the only thing / going on (現在起こっている).

This planet is also home to cars , brussels sprouts(芽キャベツ) , 
those weird fish things(おかしな魚のようなもの) / that have their own headlights (自分自身のヘッドライトをもっている=ちょうちんアンコウ) , 
art, fire , 
fire extinguishers(消火器) , 
laws, pigeons, bottles of beer , 
lemons and light bulbs(電球);
Pinot noir(ピノノワール..というワイン) and paracetamol(解熱・鎮痛剤) , 
ghosts, mosquitoes, flamingos, flowers , 
the ukulele, elevators and cats , 
cat videos, the internet , 
iron beams(鉄骨), buildings and batteries , 
all ingenuity(創意工夫) and bright ideas , all known life .
and a whole bunch(ひとまとめの) of other stuff(そのほかの物事).

Pretty much everything(ほとんどすべての) / we know / and ever heard of.


It's my favorite place, actually.

This small orb(球体), floating in a cold / and lonely part / of the cosmos.

Oh, the accent is from Belfast(ベルファスト・北アイルランドの首都) , by the way, which is here.

Roughly.
You may think / you know this planet Earth / as you're from here.

But chances are (多分次のようなことだろう),
you probably haven't thought / about the basics in a while.

I thought I knew it (私は知っている、と思っていた).

Thought I was an expert, even.

Until, that is, I had to explain(説明しなくてはならなかった) / the entire place(全体の場所を) , and how it's supposed to work(そして、その動作の概要を) , to someone / who had never been here before(ここに一度も来たことがない).

Not what you might think (あなたが思っていること、ではない), although my dad always did say(私の父がいつも言っていた) / the sure sign (確かな印は)of intelligent life out there / is that / they haven't bothered trying to contact us.

It was actually my newborn son (それはまさしく私の新しく生まれた子供だった) / I was trying to explain things to (私が説明しようとしていた先は).

We'd never been parents before(私達はこれまで親子になったことはない) ,  my wife and I , and so treated him(それで、彼を扱った) /
like most guests(ほとんどのお客様みたいに) / when he arrived home / for the first time , by giving him the tour.

This is where you live (ここがあなたが住んでいる場所だよ), son.

This room is where / we make food at.

This is the room / we keep our collection of chairs , and so on.

It's refreshing , explaining how our planet works / to a zero year old (ゼロ才の子供に).

But after the laughs , and once the magnitude(巨大さ) / that new humans know / absolutely nothing / settles on you(あなたにくっつく) / and how little you know either(あなたもまたほとんど知らない) , explaining the whole planet(この惑星全体を説明することは) / becomes quite intimidating(たいへん恐怖なことになる).

But I tried anyway.

As I walked around / those first few weeks , narrating(話して説明すること)  the world as I saw it , 
I began to take notes / of the ridiculous things / I was saying.

The notes slowly morphed(変形した、変わっていった) / into a letter intended for my son / once he learned to read.

And that letter became a book / about the basic principles / of what it is to be a human / living on Earth / in the 21st century.

Some things are really obvious.

Like, the planet is made of two parts / land and sea.

Some less obvious / until you think about them.

Like, time.

Things can sometimes move slowly / here on Earth.

But more often , they move quickly.

So use your time well , it will be gone / before you know it.

Or people.

People come / in all different shapes, sizes and colors.

We may all look different , act different / and sound different , 
but don't be fooled(しかし、騙されてはいけません).

We are all people.

It doesn't skip me / that of all the places / in the universe , 
people only live on Earth , can only live on Earth.

And even then , only on some of the dry bits(そして乾いた小さないくつかの上にだけ...{生きていくことができる} ).

There's only a very small part / of the surface of our planet / that is actually habitable(居住できる) / to human life, and squeezed(押し込まれている)  in here / is where all of us live.

It's easy to forget / when you're up close / to the dirt, the rocks, the foliage(葉っぱ) , the concrete of our lands , just how limited the room (部屋がなんと限られていることか) / for maneuvering (操縦するための) / is.

From a set of eyes / close to the ground , the horizon feels like / it goes forever.

After all , it's not an everyday ritual(儀式) /to consider where we are / on the ball of our planet / and where that ball is / in space.

I didn't want to tell my son / the same story of countries / that we were told / where I was growing up / in Northern Ireland.

That we were from just a small parish(教会の地域区域) , which ignores life outside / its immediate concerns.

I wanted to try to feel / what it was like / to see our planet / as one system , as a single object , hanging in space.

To do this, I would need to switch / from flat drawings for books / to 3D sculpture for the street , and I'd need almost 200 feet , a New York City block , to build a large scale model / of the moon , the Earth and us.

This project managed to take place / on New York City's High Line park / last winter , on the 50th anniversary / of Apollo eleven's mission / around the Moon.

After its installation , I was able to put on a space helmet / with my son and launch , like Apollo 11 did / half a century ago , towards the Moon.

We circled around / and looked back at us.

What I felt was / how lonely it was there / in the dark.

And I was just pretending.

The Moon is the only object / even remotely close to us.

And at the scale of this project , where our planet was 10 feet in diameter ,  Mars, the next planet , will be the size of a yoga ball /
and a couple of miles away.

Although borders are not visible / from space, on my sculpture , 
every single border was drawn in.

But rather than writing the country names / on the carved up land , 
I wrote over and over again.

"People live here. people live here."
"People live here."

And off on the Moon , it was written , 
"No one lives here."

Often, the obvious things aren't all that obvious / until you think about them.

Seeing anything / from a vast(広大な) enough distance / changes everything , as many astronauts have experienced.

And human eyes have only ever seen our Earth / from as far as the Moon, really.

It's quite a ways further / before we get to the edges of our own Solar System.

And even out to other stars , to the constellations.

There is actually only one point / in the entire cosmos / that is present / in all constellations of stars , and that presence is here, planet Earth.

Those pictures / we have made up for the clusters of stars / only make sense / from this point of view / down here.

Their stories only make sense / here on Earth.
And only something to us.
To people.

We are creatures of stories.

We are the stories we tell , we're the stories we're told.

Consider briefly / the story of human civilization on Earth.

It tells of the ingenuity(創意工夫) , elegance, generous and nurturing(育成すること) nature of a species / that is also self focused , vulnerable(壊れやすい、脆弱な) and defiantly protective.

We, the people, shield the flame / of our existence / from the raw , vast elements / outside our control , the great beyond.

Yet it is always to the flame / we look.

"For all we know , " when said as a statement , it means the sum total / of all knowledge.

But when said another way , "for all we know , " it means that we don't know at all.

This is the beautiful , fragile drama of civilization.

We are the actors and spectators of a cosmic play / that means the world / to us here , but means nothing / anywhere else.

Possibly not even that much down here, either.

If we truly thought about our relationship / with our boat , with our Earth , 
it might be more of a story / of ignorance and greed.

As is the case with Fausto(人物= 話し手さんが以前創作した物語の話) , a man / who believed he owned everything / and set out to survey / what was his.

He easily claims ownership / of a flower, a sheep, a tree and a field.

The lake and the mountain prove harder / to conquer , but they, too, surrender.

It is in trying to own the open sea / where his greed(貪欲) proves
his undoing , when, in a fit of arrogance , 
he climbs overboard(水中へ) / to show that sea / who is boss.

But he doesn't understand , slips beneath the waves(波の下へすべっていく) , sinks to the bottom.

The sea was sad for him.

But carried on (つづけていった) / being the sea (海であることを).

As do all the other objects of his ownership , for the fate of Fausto / does not matter to them.

For all the importance in the cosmos / we believe we hold , 
we'd have nothing / if not for this Earth.

While it would keep happily spinning , obliviously without us.

On this planet , there are people.

We have gone about our days , sometimes we look up / and out,
mostly we look down and in.

Looking up and by drawing lines / between the lights in the sky , we've attempted to make sense / out of chaos.

Looking down , we've drawn lines / across the land
to know / where we belong / and where we don't.

We do mostly forget / that these lines / that connect the stars /
and those lines / that divide the land live only / in our heads.

They, too, are stories.

We carry out(成し遂げる、実行する) / our everyday routines / and rituals / according to the stories / we most believe in , and these days, the story is changing / as we write it.

There is a lot of fear / in this current story , and until recently , the stories that seemed / to have the most power are those of bitterness(苦さ) , of how it had all gone wrong / for us individually and collectively(集団的に).

It has been inspiring / to watch / how the best comes / from the worst.

How people are waking up / in this time of global reckoning(計算) / to the realization / that our connections / with each other / are some of the most important things / we have.

But stepping back.

For all we've had to lament(嘆く) / we spend very little time / relishing(楽しむ) the single biggest thing / that has ever gone / right for us.

That we are here / in the first place / that we are alive at all.

That we are still alive.

A million and a half years after / finding a box of matches , we haven't totally burned the house down.

Yet.

The chances of being here / are infinitesimal(無限小).

Yet here we are.

Perils(危険なこと) and all.

There have never been more people / living on Earth.

Using more stuff.

And it's become obvious / that many of the old systems / we invented for ourselves / are obsolete(廃れている).

And we have to build new ones.

If it wasn't germs, our collective fire might suffocate(窒息させる) us / before long.

As we watch the wheels / of industry grind to a halt , 
the machinery of progress become silent /
we have the wildest of opportunities / to hit the reset button / to take a different path.

Here we are on Earth.

And life on Earth is a wonderful thing.

It looks big, this Earth , 
but there are lots of us on here.

Seven and a half billion / at last count ,
with more showing up every day.

Even so, there is still enough for everyone , if we all share a little.

So please be kind.

When you think of it / another way , if Earth is the only place / where people live , it's actually the least lonely place / in the universe.

There are plenty of people / to be loved by and plenty of people to love.

We need each other.

We know that now , more than ever.

Good night.