Tuesday, March 13, 2012

My words were of paper, scarcely splashed by a spot of blood

More Zorba.

"How do you expect to get the better of a devil, boss, if you don't turn into a devil-and-a-half yourself?"
"Yes, you understand with your brain. You say: 'This is right, and that's wrong; this is true, and that isn't; he's right, the other one's wrong...' But where does that lead us? While you are talking I watch your arms and chest. Well, what are they doing? They're silent. They don't say a word. As though they hadn't a drop of blood between them. Well, what do you think you understand with? With your head? Bah!"
"'It's all because of doing things by halves,' he would often say to me, and 'saying things by halves, being good by halves, that the world is in the mess it's in today. Do things properly by God! One good knock for each nail and you'll win through! God hates a half-devil ten times more than an archdevil!'"
"That is what a real man is like, I thought, envying Zorba's sorrow. A man with warm blood and solid bones, who lets real tears run down his cheeks when he is suffering; and when he is happy he does not spoil the freshness of his joy by running it through the fine sieve of metaphysics."
"I felt deep within me that the highest point a man can attain is not Knowledge, or Virtue, or Goodness, or Victory, but something even greater, more heroic and more despairing: Sacred Awe!"
"I had rarely felt so full of joy in my life. It was no ordinary joy, it was a sublime, absurd and unjustifiable gladness. Not only unjustifiable, contrary to all justification. This time I had lost everything--my money, my men, the line, the trucks; we had constructed a small port and now we had nothing to export. It was all lost.

Well, it was precisely at that moment that I felt an unexpected sense of deliverance. As if in the hard, somber labyrinth of necessity I had discovered liberty herself playing happily in a corner. And I played with her."


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