I know how much you grieve over those who are under your care: those you try to help and fail, those you cannot help. Have faith in God and remember that He will is His own way and in His own time complete what we so poorly attempt. Often we do not achieve for others the good that we intend but achieve something, something that goes on from our effort. Good is an overflow. Where we generously and sincerely intend it, we are engaged in a work of creation which may be mysterious even to ourselves - and because it is mysterious we may be afraid of it. But this should not make us draw back. God can always show us, if we will, a higher and a better way; and we can only learn to love by loving. Remember that all our failures are ultimately failures in love. Imperfect love must not be condemned and rejected but made perfect. The way is always forward, never back.
Education doesn’t make you happy. Nor does freedom. We don’t become happy just because we’re free – if we are. Or because we’ve been educated – if we have. But because education may be the means by which we realize we are happy. It opens our eyes, our ears, tells us where delights are lurking, convinces us that there is only one freedom of any importance whatsoever, that of the mind, and gives us the assurance – the confidence – to walk the path our mind, our educated mind, offers.
So we live; a spirit that broods and hovers over the continual death of time, the lost meaning, the unrecaptured moment, the unremembered face, until the final chop that ends all our moments and plunges that spirit back into the void from which it came.
There is no beyond, there is only here, the infinitely small, infinitely great and utterly demanding present.
Dora was stunned by this information. She stopped. 'Do you mean' she said, 'that they're completely imprisoned in there?'Mrs. Marks laughed. 'Not imprisoned, my dear,' she said. 'They are there of their own free will. This is not a prison. It is on the contrary a place which it is very hard to get into, and only the strongest achieve it. Like Mary in the parable, they have chosen the better part.
The past and the present are after all so close, so almost one, as if time were an artificial teasing out of a material which longs to join, to interpenetrate, and to become heavy and very small like some of those heavenly bodies scientists tell us of.
To anyone who will take the trouble to become attached to her she will immediately give a devoted, generous, imaginative and completely uncapricious attention, which is still a calculated avoidance of self-surrender. This is no doubt another reason why she never went into films; her private life must be an almost full-time activity. This has the sad result too that her existence is one long act of disloyalty; and when I knew her she was constantly involved in secrecy and lying in order to conceal from each of her friends the fact that she was so closely bound to all the others.
Existentialism, in both its Continental and its Anglo-Saxon versions, is an attempt to solve the problem without really facing it: to solve it by attributing to the individual an empty, lonely freedom, a freedom, if he wishes, to 'fly in the face of the facts'. What it pictures is indeed the fearful solitude of the individual marooned upon a tiny island in the middle of a sea of scientific facts, and morality escaping from science only by a wild leap of the will. But our situation is not like this.
I think being a woman is like being Irish... Everyone says you're important and nice, but you take second place all the time.
There was something factitious and brittle and thereby utterly feminine about her charm which made me want to crush her, even to crunch her. She had a slight cast in one eye which gives her gaze a strange concentrated intensity. Her eyes sparkle, almost as if they were actually emitting sparks. She is electric. And she could run faster in very high-heeled shoes than any girl I ever met.
But very few ordeals are redemptive and I doubt if the descent into hell teaches anything new. It can only hasten processes which are already in existence, and usually this just means that it degrades. You see, in hell one lacks the energy for any good change. This indeed is the meaning of hell.
I am in favour of illusion, not alienation... Drama must create a factitious spell-binding present moment and imprison the spectator in it. The theatre apes the profound truth that we are extended beings who yet can only exist in the present.
However life, unlike art, has an irritating way of bumping and limping on, undoing conversions, casting doubt on solutions, and generally illustrating the impossibility of living happily or virtuously ever after.
Even if readers claim that they 'take it all with a grain of salt', they do not really. They yearn to believe, and they believe, because believing is easier than disbelieving, and because anything which is written down is likely to be 'true in a way'.
It was extremely difficult to keep up any pace over the rocks since they were so unpredictable and devoid of reason. Their senselessness had never so much impressed me.
There are mysterious agencies of the human mind which, like roving gases, travel the world, causing pain and mutilation, without their owners having any full awareness, or even any awareness at all, of the strength and the whereabouts of these exhalations... So it is that we can be terrors to each other, and people in lonely rooms suffer humiliation and even damage because of others in whose consciousness perhaps they scarcely figure at all.
People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us.
While the light remains,' said Carde, speaking slowly in his high deliberate voice, 'only do not forsake the joy of life. If you shall have given all your kisses, you will give too few. And as leaves fall from withered wreaths which you may see spread upon the cups and floating there, so for us, who now as lovers hope for so much, perhaps tomorrow's day will close the doom.
Marian was suddenly overcome by an appalling crippling panic. She was very frightened at the idea of arriving. But it was more than that. She feared the rocks and the cliffs and the grotesque dolmen and the ancient secret things. Her two companions seemed no longer reassuring but dreadfully alien and even sinister. She felt, for the first time in her life, completely isolated and in danger. She became in an instant almost faint with terror.She said, as a cry for help, ‘I’m feeling terribly nervous’.‘I know you are,’ said Scottow.(…)Marian was appalled at the sudden quietness. But the insane panic had left her. She was frightened now in an ordinary way, sick in her stomach, shy, tongue-tied, horribly aware of the onset of a new world.
Amo amas amat amamus amatis amant amavi amavisti amavit amavimus amavistis amaverunt amavero amaveris amaverit… Everything was love. Everything will be love. Everything has been love. Everything would be love. Everything would have been love. Ah, that was it, the truth at last. Everything would have been love. The huge eye, which had become an immense sphere, was gently breathing, only it was not an eye nor a sphere but a great wonderful animal covered in little waving legs like hairs, waving oh so gently as if they were under water. All shall be well and all shall be well said the ocean. So the place of reconciliation existed after all, not like a little knot hole in a cupboard but flowing everywhere and being everything. I had only to will it and it would be, for spirit is omnipotent only I never knew it, like being able to walk on the air. I could forgive. I could be forgiven. I could forgive. Perhaps that was the whole of it after all. Perhaps being forgiven was just forgiving only no one had ever told me. There was nothing else needful. Just to forgive. Forgiving equals being forgiven, the secret of the universe, do not whatever you do forget it. The past was folded up and in the twinkling of an eye everything had been changed and made beautiful and good.
He felt, in a way so familiar as to be almost dreary, the chosen victim of the gods, the self-admitted traitor, the one destined for judgment.
... male company, sheer complicit male company: the complicity of males which is like, indeed is, a kind of complicity in crime, in chauvinism, in getting away with things, in just gluttonously enjoying the present even if hell is all around.
It was a piece of thoroughly picturesque and proper violence. I like a violent man, really, a man who's a bit of a brute in a decent straightforward way.
The past and present are after all so close, almost one, as if time were an artificial teasing out of a material which longs to join, to interpenetrate, and to become heavy and very small like some of those heavenly bodies scientists tell us of.
Trains induce such terrible anxiety. They image the possibility of total and irrevocable failure. They are also dirty, rackety, packed with strangers, an object lesson in the foul contingency of life: the talkative fellow-traveller, the possibility of children.
But one must do something about the past. It doesn’t just cease to be. It goes on existing and affecting the present, and in new and different ways, as if in some other dimension it too were growing.
One forgot, one forgot. What hold had one on the past? The present moment was a little travelling in darkness.
What a queer gamble our existence is. We decide to do A instead of B and then the two roads diverge utterly and may lead in the end to heaven and to hell. Only later one sees how much and how awfully the fates differ. Yet what were the reasons for the choice? They may have been forgotten. Did one know what one was choosing? Certainly not.
It is necessary to write, that much is clear, and to write in a way quite unlike any way which I have employed before.
All the time when I speak to you, even now, I'm saying not precisely what I think, but what will impress you and make you respond. That's so even between us - and how much more it's so where there are stronger motives for deception. In fact, one's so used to this one hardly sees it. The whole language is a machine for making falsehoods.
Jealousy is perhaps the most involuntary of all strong emotions. It steals consciousness, it lies deeper than thought. It is always there, like a blackness in the eye, it discolours the world.
I hate solitude, but I'm afraid of intimacy. The substance of my life is a private conversation with myself which to turn into a dialogue would be equivalent to self-destruction. The company which I need is the company which a pub or a cafe will provide. I have never wanted a communion of souls. It's already hard enough to tell the truth to oneself.