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Workshop on Interpretation 3

The Workshop on Interpretation 3 was held on 12th September 2016, and was delivered by Venerable Miao Guang, Personal Interpreter of Venerable Master Hsing Yun. Participants who attended the workshop benefitted a lot, as the steps, methods and challenges to interpretation were covered over the 4-hour session.

Venerable Miao Guang recapped on the main points of the first two workshops. Firstly, before a dharma talk, interpreters should always make the effort to familiarise themselves with the topic and try to get the slides from the speaker in advance to understand the structure of the talk. Secondly, if there are any distractions during the talk, the interpreter should take a few deep breathes and to re-focus on the matter at hand. Moreover, interpreters should pay attention to the body language of the speaker, so that the interpretation can match perfectly with the correct meaning portrayed by the speaker. In order to become a good interpreter, we must always equip ourselves with both English proficiency and dharma knowledge. Most importantly, we cannot lost hope, and we cannot give up. Everyone starts from zero, and we all learn through these experiences and mistakes that we make along the way. Should any Dharma terms or knowledge be unfamiliar to one while interpreting, it is always possible to catch up after.

A dharma talk about Lotus Sutra by Venerable Man Qian was used for two practical exercises. The first exercise was to pick out the keywords of the talk; as keywords are the essence of a dharma talk, and each sentence should contain one or two only. The keywords should assist us in remembering what the speaker had spoken, 5 minutes ago. The second exercise was to write down the clauses in the sentences for the same duration that the keywords were noted. Writing the clauses is almost the same as actual interpretation. The audience can understand the main points by reading the clauses. In addition, interpreters must ensure that the translation is presented in a logical way and easily understanable. We can add some humour and emotions while interpreting, so that the audience can also enjoy the talk.

Venerable Zhi Yue who was also present at the workshop, gave some comments and feedback on the exercise done by the participants. She covered the positive points and also areas where the participants could improve on.

Before the end of workshop, Venerable Miao Guang encouraged everyone to continue learning and practicing by using the methods learned through this workshop.

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