1 PSALMUS. David. Dominus pascit me, et nihil mihi deerit:
2 in pascuis virentibus me collocavit, super aquas quietis eduxit me,
3 animam meam refecit. Deduxit me super semitas justitiæ propter nomen suum.
4 Nam et si ambulavero in valle umbræ mortis, non timebo mala, quoniam tu mecum es. Virga tua et baculus tuus, ipsa me consolata sunt.
5 Parasti in conspectu meo mensam adversus eos, qui tribulant me; impinguasti in oleo caput meum, et calix meus redundat.
6 Etenim benignitas et misericordia subsequentur me omnibus diebus vitæ meæ, et inhabitabo in domo Domini in longitudinem dierum.
4. Bíblia de Almeida
1. Psalmo de David. JEOVAH he meu Pastor, nada me faltará.
2. Em pastos ervosos me faz deitar: mansamente me leva a agoas muy quietas.
3 Refrigéra minha alma: guia me por veredas de justiça, por seu nome.
4 Ainda que tambem andasse pelo valle da sombra de morte, naõ temeria algum mal: porque estás comigo: tua vara e teu cajado me consolaõ.
5 Aparelhas a mesa perante my em fronte de meus adversarios: unges minha cabeça com azeite, meu copo tresborda.
6 Pois o bem e a beneficencia me seguiráõ todos os dias de minha vida: e ficarei na casa de JEOVAH por longos dias.
5. Bíblia de Antonio Martini
1. Salmo di Davidde. Il Signore mi governa, e niuna cosa a me mancherà:
2 Egli mi ha posto in luoghi di pascolo abbondante. Mi ha condotto ad un'acqua, che riconforta:
3 Richiamò a se l'anima mia. Mi ha condotto pe' sentieri della giustizia per amor del suo nome.
4 Imperocchè quand'anche io caminassi in mezzo all'ombra di morte, non temerò disastri, perchè meco sei tu. La tua verga stessa, e il tuo bastone mi han consolato.
5 Hai imbandita dinanzi a me una mensa, in faccia di quelli, che mi perseguitano. Hai asperso il mio capo di unguento; ma quanto è mai buono il mio calice esilarante!
6 E la tua misericordia mi seguirà per tutti i giorni della mia vita, affinchè io abiti nella casa del Signore pe' lunghi giorni.
6. Bíblia de Geneva
1. A Psalm of David. The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to rest in green pasture, and leadeth me by the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul, and leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his Name’s sake.
4 Yea, though I should walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me: thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
5 Thou dost prepare a table before me in the sight of mine adversaries: thou dost anoint mine head with oil, and my cup runneth over.
6 Doubtless kindness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall remain a long season in the house of the Lord.
7. Bíblia de Port Royal
Cantique de David. Le Seigneur est mon Pasteur, je ne puis manquer de rien: il me fait reposer en d'excellens pâturages. Il me conduit à des eaux calmes & tranquilles: il rappelle à lui mon ame. Il me fait marcher par les sentiers de la justice: pour la gloire de son nom. Aussi quand je me trouverois dans une lieu de l'ombre de la mort, je ne craindrai point les maux: parce que vous êtes avec moi. Vôtre verge & vôtre bâton: m'ont consolé. Vous avez préparé une table devant mes yeux: contre ceux qui m'affligent. Vous avez engraissé ma tête dans l'huille: & que ma coupe qui enyvre est delicieuse! Et vôtre misericorde m'accompagnera: tous les jours de ma vie: Afin que j'habite éternellement: dans la maison du Seigneur.
8. Bíblia de Luthero
1 Ein Psalm Davids. Der HERR ist mein Hirte; mir wird nichts mangeln.
2 Er weidet mich auf grüner Aue und führet mich zum frischen Wasser.
3 Er erquicket meine Seele; er führet mich auf rechter Straße um seines Namens willen.
4 Und ob ich schon wanderte im finstern Tal, fürchte ich kein Unglück; denn du bist bei mir, dein Stecken und dein Stab trösten mich.
5 Du bereitest vor mir einen Tisch im Angesicht meiner Feinde. Du salbest mein Haupt mit Öl und schenkest mir voll ein.
6 Gutes und Barmherzigkeit werden mir folgen mein Leben lang, und ich werde bleiben im Hause des HERRN immerdar.
Whenever we meet we speak of God. I set the tone for our conversations a long time ago by pronouncing myself an atheist, but what an odd sort of atheist you must have found me. I certainly reject the label "spiritual", which I take to be as rotten as the cursed fig tree, but then you must find it odd (perhaps even awkward) how often God and theology slivers into the conversation. What is wrong with me? You describe yourself as an atheist as well, but I do think, my friend, that we are worlds apart. For while you look ceaselessly for answers in Plato and Cicero while at the same time fearing they might be denounced by the likes of Hitchens and Dawkins, that is a dilemma that never really occurred to me. I think you heard me mock the new atheists for the first time soon after we met, but it was only recently that you convinced me to watch them in your presence so I could give you my opinion. I did so, and you looked in awe as I accepted every single one of their arguments against religion, sometimes going even further in that virulence, while I nevertheless kept affirming that theirs were quite childish, not to say pedestrian reasons to become an atheist. As an atheist, I told you, I agreed with everything they said. But were I religious I would agree as well, and I very much hoped that my religious friends would agree with that as well — barbarism savagery and bigotry have no place anywhere. I repeated that those arguments seemed frivolous, utilitarian in the base sense of the word, so you very rightly demanded to know why. If my atheism had nothing to do with the number of deaths caused by religious fanaticism, by the thought-control and by indoctrination, whence did it come?
As I promised you then, I am writing this so I can try to answer that question. It is a very foolish lover who purports to give reason of the heart's meanders, so you will forgive me in advance for failing to do so. It has been a long travel, you see, to which books add just as much as chancing upon clears in the forest and gaining an epiphany of the dread god Pan. My atheism, contrary to what Dawkins suggests, does not consist of a scheme of subtraction, whereupon all gods would be subtracted, and then some, and then just the last one. Rather my atheism is of a very polytheistic nature, for I do feel the gods nearby. Only that gives me no relief. To the Greeks as well, security was not granted by the gods but by the grand order of the cosmos. The gods, if anything, were a part of that cosmos, but it is far more likely that they contributed much more to that disorder and uncertainty of human life, which we today owe and attribute to atheism, than they did to giving human souls tranquility.
But I did not come here to talk of polytheism. The gods give me strength and weakness, but they do not hold my hand. That province pertains solely to the Living God. But how could I ever explain to you that it has nothing to do with epistemology? How it bores me — quantum me tædet — when I start hearing arguments for and against the existence of God! Because for me one thing is self-evident. God exists. But by that fact no link is signified connecting me to Him. We remain as distant two people who've never met, which is the same as not existing, and hence I call myself an atheist. For that gap to be bridged both have to accept, unconditionally, the desire of the other. What Hitchens et al leave out of the picture is how much religion is a matter of love. I do not mean that Plotinian overflow, that benevolence — God is anything but benevolent —, but rather that erotic pulse which often would be better described as rape. This the Greeks mythologists knew, this the allegorists betrayed — it is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the Living God, the God who wants to take you for Himself. This Jeremiah knew, this he resented. I resent it as well. I resent His weapons of overbearing power: literature and landscapes alike try to drive me to Him, but when they do I treat them in the same way as when I see supposed friends who try to con or cheat you, and I will not have it.
Love and Hate guide the lover, but the loved is not without his guiles. In faith, and this Kazantzakis taught me best, the hardest thing is to discern which one is which. Is God the lover or the loved? Does God want my faith, or do I want to believe? We dance, of course. I taunt Him and tease Him with my hesitant Yes, He flirts and He holds me against Himself with poems, with films, and with, oh Lord, with music, that most cunning of all His shieldmaidens. Simone Weil supposedly converted upon reading a poem called Love. (I've always avoided reading it, my eyes dodge the page where it will appear.) One of my greatest teachers argued with no small persuasive power that Beethoven's Arietta proved the existence of God. That is not a rational argument, it is a fallacy, and it is good that we refuse to be persuaded by it.
It is not that I wouldn't like God to hold me in His arms. It is just that the promises he makes are a lover's promises, sweet and tender, and perhaps even He Himself would like to believe in them, but that does not make them true. If I would fall on my knees and believe in your name, my Lord Hakodesh, would the world be once again held in its place? Would you draw the chains to hold again the Horizon of Heaven and Hell in its place? You can promise me that, and you do promise me that, but you do know, Adonai, that standing underneath the starry sky not even You can promise me that. A Lover's words, in rapida scribere oportet aqua, that Heraclitean rag.
To take God at His word, I would have to believe the impossible. This would put me off-balance. I present Him with my kind of impossibility: if You would persuade me to love you, I would believe the impossible. We are a strange couple. Epistemology has as much a role to play in it as when the fool Niccolò Niccolì criticizes Dante for not sticking to historical fact. We read Anselm when you stayed in my house in Thessaloniki, you were visibly excited when I told you that the ontological proof of the existence of God remained unshakeable until Kant, and even after the man there was a possibility that it might still be rescued. Your thirst for your God was endearing to me. You wanted to know how it worked, and once again you were surprised when I told you that even if if were some unassailable logic, still it wouldn't be put me down a single notch, that my atheism was not for debate. I think that was when I promised you that I would write this. I know it is not what you were expecting, but I hope it is at least satisfactory. One way or another you're bound to understand why is it we were talking on different spheres altogether. Maybe next time we meet we can continue from here.
Um país assim não é para velhos. Os jovens
Nos braços uns dos outros, pássaros nas árvores
— As gerações que morrem — ao seu canto,
As cascatas dos salmões, os mares apinhados de carapau,
Peixe, carne, ou ave, ao longo de todo o verão propõem
O que é gerado, que nasce, que morre.
Retidos naquela música dos sentidos todos desprezam
Monumentos do intelecto sem idade.
Um homem de idade é uma coisa desprezível,
Um casaco aos farrapos pendurado, a não ser que
A alma cante e bata palmas, e cante mais alto
Por cada farrapo nas suas vestes mortais,
E aliás a única escola de música é estudar
Os monumentos da sua própria magnificência;
E por isso eu naveguei os mares e cheguei
À santa cidade de Byzâncio.
Ó sábios no meio do santo fogo de Deus
Como nos mosaicos dourados da parede,
Saiam do fogo santo, bobina girante,
E sejam os mestres-cantores da minha alma.
Consumam o meu coração, que doente de desejo
E atado a um animal moribundo
Não sabe o que é; e reunam-me
Dentro do artifício da eternidade.
Assim que sair da natureza jamais assumirei
A forma corpórea de algo que for natural,
Antes uma forma como as que os ourives Gregos esculpem
De ouro martelado e esmalte de ouro
Para manter acordado o Imperador sonolento;
Ou com um ramo de ouro cantarei
Aos senhores e damas de Byzâncio
Do que passou, do que se passa, ou do que virá.
William Butler Yeats. Tradução minha
Sailing to Byzantium
That is no country for old men. The young
In one another's arms, birds in the trees
– Those dying generations – at their song,
The salmon-falls, the mackerel-crowded seas,
Fish, flesh, or fowl, commend all summer long
Whatever is begotten, born, and dies.
Caught in that sensual music all neglect
Monuments of unageing intellect.
An aged man is but a paltry thing,
A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
For every tatter in its mortal dress,
Nor is there singing school but studying
Monuments of its own magnificence;
And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
To the holy city of Byzantium.
O sages standing in God's holy fire
As in the gold mosaic of a wall,
Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
And be the singing-masters of my soul.
Consume my heart away; sick with desire
And fastened to a dying animal
It knows not what it is; and gather me
Into the artifice of eternity.
Once out of nature I shall never take
My bodily form from any natural thing,
But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make
Of hammered gold and gold enamelling
To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;
Or set upon a golden bough to sing
To lords and ladies of Byzantium
Of what is past, or passing, or to come.
é bela a luz
vês as árvores e os pássaros
junto à colina
as últimas trevas retiram-se
as sombras indistintas
forma vão ganhando pouco a pouco:
são rochas, pinheiros, ciprestes
os pássaros despertam
alinham-se nos ramos das árvores
o cinzento torna-se branco
por instantes até dourado
é bela a luz
é belo ver a graça de Deus
Dimakis Minas. Tradução minha.
Ξημέρωμα στο Παράθυρό μου
Είναι ωραίο το φως
Να βλέπεις τα δέντρα και τα πουλιά
Εκεί πλάι στο λόφο
Τα τελευταία σκοτάδια υποχωρούν
Ίσκιοι διαγράφονται αόριστα
Σε λίγο παίρνουν μορφή
Είναι τα βράχια τα πεύκα τα κυπαρίσσια
Τα πουλιά ξυπνούν
Σχηματίζουν κορδέλες από δέντρο σε δέντρο
Το γκρίζο γίνεται λευκό
Χρυσίζει σε λίγο
Είναι ωραίο το φως
Είναι ωραίο να βλέπεις τη χάρη του Θεού