Nothing makes one so vain as being told one is a sinner. Conscience makes egotists of us all.
I know that faith made my life possible and that of many others like me... Reason hardly warranted Anne Sullivan's attempt to transform a little half-human, half-animal, deaf-blind child into a complete human being. Neither science nor philosophy had set such a goal, but faith, the eye of love did. I did not know I had a soul. Then the God in a wise heart drew me out of nothingness with cords of human love and the life belt of language, and lo, I found myself. In my doubly shadowed world faith gives me a reason for trying to draw harmony out of a marred instrument. Faith is not a cushion for me to fall back upon; it is my working energy.
It seemed that out of battle I escaped Down some profound dull tunnel, long since scooped Through granites which titanic wars had groined. Yet also there encumbered sleepers groaned, Too fast in thought or death to be bestirred.Then, as I probed them, one sprang up, and stared With piteous recognition in fixed eyes,Lifting distressful hands, as if to bless. And by his smile, I knew that sullen hall, - By his dead smile I knew we stood in Hell. With a thousand pains that vision's face was grained;Yet no blood reached there from the upper ground, And no guns thumped, or down the flues made moan. 'Strange friend,' I said, 'here is no cause to mourn.''None,' said that other, 'save the undone years, The hopelessness. Whatever hope is yours, Was my life also; I went hunting wild After the wildest beauty in the world, Which lies not calm in eyes, or braided hair, But mocks the steady running of the hour, And if it grieves, grieves richlier than here.For by my glee might many men have laughed,And of my weeping something had been left, Which must die now. I mean the truth untold, The pity of war, the pity war distilled.http://www.pitt.edu/~pugachev/greatwar/owen.html