My Ambition Has Not Been Fulfilled

Liang, Qi-chao 1 (1874 A.D.-1929 A.D.)

    My ambition has not been fulfilled. My ambition has not been fulfilled. May I ask you when your ambition will be fulfilled? An ambition should grow endlessly and should never be fulfilled. The progress of the world never stops, neither will my expectations. New knowledge and sorrow grow continuously like tangled threads, so does my sympathy 2. After I climb a mountain, another looms. After I sail across an ocean, another appears. Even if I work energetically like a dragon rising and a tiger leaping for a hundred years, how much can I achieve? Even though it may be very little, I dare not underestimate myself. A great accomplishment is built by little ones. When I put the future into perspective, who should not feel the same way? Well, a man's aspiration for an ideal world should only advance and never stop. A fulfilled ambition will no longer be an ambition.

1 Zhuo-ru and Ren-gong were Qi-chao Liang's other first names. He called himself the Room Owner Whose Only Drink Is Ice (a very poor man who cannot afford a water pump). He was a native of Xin-hui City in Guangdong Province. In 1889, he passed the Advanced Exam at the age of sixteen. He was a pupil of You-wei Kang. Both of them were the main figures of Wu-shu Coup (1898 Political Reform). Queen Ci-xi opposed the reform and arrested the members of the reform party. Liang fled to Japan. He was successively the executive editor of the newspapers: the News of the Contemporary Affairs, the Forum, New Democracy, and National Dignity. He advocated political reform for democracy and influenced his contemporaries greatly. His style of writing, known as New-democracy Style, was very popular during the end of the Qin dynasty. After Dr. Yi-xian Sun founded the Republic of China, Liang became the Minister of Justice and then the Minister of Finance. During his late years, he was successively a professor of Peijing normal University, Nan-kai University, Dong-nan (southeastern) University, and Qing-hua University. He was the author of The Collection of the Room Owner Whose Only Drink Is Ice.

2 Liang was sympathetic with people who suffered from poverty and ignorance.