Monday, November 1, 2021

Readings for a Hallowed Day

The Night Before: All Hallows' Eve
Thanks to Cathy Lindsay & Karen's Halloween
Trick or Treating In New England ~ by Raney White

The Morning After: All Hallows' Day
Illustration from Cat Cafe

James Baldwin: “Life is tragic simply because the earth turns and the sun inexorably rises and sets, and one day, for each of us, the sun will go down for the last, last time. Perhaps the whole root of our trouble, the human trouble, is that we will sacrifice all the beauty of our lives, will imprison ourselves in totems, taboos, crosses, blood sacrifices, steeples, mosques, races, armies, flags, nations, in order to deny the fact of death, the only fact we have. It seems to me that one ought to rejoice in the fact of death--ought to decide, indeed, to earn one's death by confronting with passion the conundrum of life. One is responsible for life: It is the small beacon in that terrifying darkness from which we come and to which we shall return” (91). ~ from The Fire Next Time

John Green: "There will come a time when all of us are dead. All of us. There will come a time when there are no human beings remaining to remember that anyone ever existed or that our species ever did anything. There will be no one left to remember Aristotle or Cleopatra, let alone you. Everything that we did and built and wrote and thought and discovered will be forgotten and all of this will have been for naught. Maybe that time is coming soon and maybe it is millions of years away, but even if we survive the collapse of our sun, we will not survive forever. There was time before organisms experienced consciousness, and there will be time after. And if the inevitability of human oblivion worries you, I encourage you to ignore it. God knows that’s what everyone else does" (12 - 13).

Our fearlessness, shall be our secret weapon, the tales of our exploits will survive as long as the human voice itself, and even after that, when the robots recall the human absurdities of sacrifice and compassion, they will remember us. They will robot-laugh at our courageous folly, but something in their iron robot hearts will yearn to have lived and died as we did: on the hero's errand” (202). ~ from The Fault in Our Stars

Aldous Huxley: “The man who comes back through the Door in the Wall will never be quite the same as the man who went out. He will be wiser but less sure, happier but less self-satisfied, humbler in acknowledging his ignorance yet better equipped to understand the relationship of words to things, of systematic reasoning to the unfathomable mystery which he tries, forever vainly, to comprehend” (79). ~ from The Doors of Perception

Tennessee Williams: "We all live in a house on fire, no fire department to call; no way out, just the upstairs window to look out of while the fire burns the house down with us trapped, locked in it." (107)

"The world is violent and mercurial - it will have its way with you. We are saved only by love - love for each other and the love that we pour into the art we feel compelled to share: being a parent; being a writer; being a painter; being a friend. We live in a perpetually burning building, and what we must save from it, all the time, is love."

~ See also November 2016 & November 2017 ~

Thanks to Cathy Lindsay & Boo Crew

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