The tears of strangers are only water.
All travel has its advantages. If the passenger visits better countries, he may learn to improve his own. And if fortune carries him to worse, he may learn to enjoy it.
Men must necessarily be the active agents of their own well-being and well-doing they themselves must in the very nature of things be their own best helpers.
Once a man would spend a week patiently waiting if he missed a stage coach, but now he rages if he misses the first section of a revolving door.
Anyone who denies the crimes and genocide of the past is opening up the way for the murders of the future.
The argument of the long view may be correct in some meaninglessly abstract sense, but it represents a fundamental mistake in categories and time scales. Our only legitimate long view extends to our children and our children's children's children—hundreds or a few thousands of years down the road. If we let the slaughter continue, they will share a bleak world with rats, dogs, cockroaches, pigeons, and mosquitoes. A potential recovery millions of years later has no meaning at our appropriate scale.
In the eighteenth century, philosophers considered the whole of human knowledge, including science, to be their field and discussed questions such as: Did the universe have a beginning? However, in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, science became too technical and mathematical for the philosophers, or anyone else except a few specialists. Philosophers reduced the scope of their inquiries so much that Wittgenstein, the most famous philosopher of this century, said, The sole remaining task for philosophy is the analysis of language. What a comedown from the great tradition of philosophy from Aristotle to Kant!
Your first love has no beginning or end. Your first love is not your first love, and it is not your last. It is just love. It is one with everything.
Our main source of psychic energy in the future will depend on our ability to understand this symbol of evolution in an acceptable context of interpretation. Only in the context of an emergent universe will the human project come to an integral understanding of itself. We must, however, come to experience the universe in its psychic as well as in its physical aspect. We need to experience the sequence of evolutionary transformations as moments of grace, and also as celebration moments in our new experience of the sacred.
The environmental crisis can only be forestalled when there is a broad new cultural understanding of what it means to be human. Sources of this new understanding would be myth – New Story…… a spiritually based on an understanding of nature as the primary revelation of the divine
This new year makes it fifty suddenly
gone. Thinking of life’s steady return
to rest cuts deep, driving me to spend
all morning wandering. Skies clear,
air’s breath fresh, I sit with friends
beside this stream flowing far away.
Striped bream weave gentle currents;
calling gulls drift above idle valleys.
Eyes roaming distant waters, I find
ridge above ridge: it’s nothing like
majestic nine-fold immortality peaks,
but to reverent eyes it’s incomparable.
Taking the winejar, I pour a round,
and we start offering brimful toasts:
who knows where today might lead
or if all this will ever come true again.
After a few cups, my heart’s far away,
and I forget thousand-year sorrows:
ranging to the limit of this morning’s
joy, it isn’t tomorrow I’m looking for.
To a Desolate Friend -
O friend, like some cold wind to-day
Your message came, and chilled the light;
Your house so dark, and mine so bright,—
I could not weep, I could not pray!
My wife and I had kissed at morn,
My children’s lips were full of song;
O friend, it seemed such cruel wrong,
My life so full, and yours forlorn!
We slept last night clasped hand in hand,
Secure and calm—and never knew
How fared the lonely hours with you,
What time those dying lips you fanned.
We dreamed of love, and did not see
The shadow pass across our dream;
We heard the murmur of a stream,
Not death’s for it ran bright and free.
And in the dark her gentle soul
Passed out, but oh! we knew it not!
My babe slept fast within her cot,
While yours woke to the slow bell’s toll.
She paused a moment,—who can tell?—
Before our windows, but we lay
So deep in sleep she went away,
And only smiled a sad farewell!
It would be like her; well we know
How oft she waked while others slept—
She never woke us when she wept,
It would be like her thus to go!
Ah, friend! you let her stray too far
Within the shadow-haunted wood,
Where deep thoughts never understood
Breathe on us and like anguish are.
One day within that gloom there shone
A heavenly dawn, and with wide eyes
She saw God’s city crown the skies,
Since when she hasted to be gone.
Too much you yielded to her grace;
Renouncing self, she thus became
An angel with a human name,
And angels coveted her face.
Earth’s door you set so wide, alack
She saw God’s gardens, and she went
A moment forth to look; she meant
No wrong, but oh! she came not back!
Dear friend, what can I say or sing,
But this, that she is happy there?
We will not grudge those gardens fair
Where her light feet are wandering.
The child at play is ignorant
Of tedious hours; the years for you
To her are moments: and you too
Will join her ere she feels your want.
The path she wends we cannot track:
And yet some instinct makes us know
Hers is the joy, and ours the woe,—
We dare not wish her to come back!
Song of an Old General -
When he was a youth of fifteen or twenty,
He chased a wild horse, he caught him and rode him,
He shot the white-browed mountain tiger,
He defied the yellow-bristled Horseman of Ye.
Fighting single- handed for a thousand miles,
With his naked dagger he could hold a multitude.
...Granted that the troops of China were as swift as heaven's thunder
And that Tartar soldiers perished in pitfalls fanged with iron,
General Wei Qing's victory was only a thing of chance.
And General Li Guang's thwarted effort was his fate, not his fault.
Since this man's retirement he is looking old and worn:
Experience of the world has hastened his white hairs.
Though once his quick dart never missed the right eye of a bird,
Now knotted veins and tendons make his left arm like an osier.
He is sometimes at the road-side selling melons from his garden,
He is sometimes planting willows round his hermitage.
His lonely lane is shut away by a dense grove,
His vacant window looks upon the far cold mountains
But, if he prayed, the waters would come gushing for his men
And never would he wanton his cause away with wine.
...War-clouds are spreading, under the Helan Range;
Back and forth, day and night, go feathered messages;
In the three River Provinces, the governors call young men --
And five imperial edicts have summoned the old general.
So he dusts his iron coat and shines it like snow-
Waves his dagger from its jade hilt in a dance of starry steel.
He is ready with his strong northern bow to smite the Tartar chieftain --
That never a foreign war-dress may affront the Emperor.
...There once was an aged Prefect, forgotten and far away,
Who still could manage triumph with a single stroke.
Since beauty is honoured all over the Empire,
How could Xi Shi remain humbly at home? --
Washing clothes at dawn by a southern lake --
And that evening a great lady in a palace of the north:
Lowly one day, no different from the others,
The next day exalted, everyone praising her.
No more would her own hands powder her face
Or arrange on her shoulders a silken robe.
And the more the King loved her, the lovelier she looked,
Blinding him away from wisdom.
...Girls who had once washed silk beside her
Were kept at a distance from her chariot.
And none of the girls in her neighbours' houses
By pursing their brows could copy her beauty.
From ‘Milton’ -
And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England’s mountains green?
And was the holy Lamb of God
On England’s pleasant pastures seen?
And did the Countenance Divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among these dark Satanic Mills?
Bring me my bow of burning gold!
Bring me my arrows of desire!
Bring me my spear! O clouds, unfold!
Bring me my chariot of fire!
I will not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand,
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England’s green and pleasant land.
I give you the end of a golden string;
Only wind it into a ball,
It will lead you in at Heaven’s gate,
Built in Jerusalem’s wall.…
England! awake! awake! awake!
Jerusalem thy sister calls!
Why wilt thou sleep the sleep of death,
And close her from thy ancient walls?
Thy hills and valleys felt her feet
Gently upon their bosoms move:
Then was a time of joy and love.
And now the time returns again:
Our souls exult, and London’s towers
Receive the Lamb of God to dwell
In England’s green and pleasant bowers.
If Humility is Christianity, you, O Jews! are the true Christians. If your tradition that Man contained in his limbs all animals is true, and they were separated from him by cruel sacrifices, and when compulsory cruel sacrifices had brought Humanity into a Feminine Tabernacle in the loins of Abraham and David, the Lamb of God, the Saviour, became apparent on Earth as the Prophets had fore-told! The return of Israel is a return to mental sacrifice and war.
And eternity in an hour.
Grown old in love from seven till seven times seven, I oft have wished for hell for ease from heaven.
Learning itself, received into a mind by nature weak, or viciously inclined, serves but to lead philosophers astray, where children would with ease discern the way.