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TIME IS LIFE
by Lu Xun (1881 – 1936)
English translation: Siew-Hsiang Chow and William Chong

The broad-minded should have the following spirit:
Face misery with a smile.
Face adversity with great courage.

Time is life.
Needlessly wasting others’ time
is no different to robbing or murder.

The prior days of my life are now dead;
I am joyful over its death
because that is how I know it ever lived.

My lifeless past is now rotten.
I am joyful over its rotting
because that is how I know it was not hollow.

A huge building comes from tiny bits and pieces
of timber and stone,
Why shouldn’t we become these tiny bits and pieces?
That is why I always do some inconsequential tasks.

── from Luxun Quan Ji (The Complete Works of Lu Xun)