Now, I have always wanted to agree with Lady Bracknell that there is no earthly use for the upper and lower classes unless they set each other a good example. But I shouldn't pretend that the consensus itself was any of my concern. It was absurd and slightly despicable, in the first decade of Thatcher and Reagan, to hear former and actual radicals intone piously against 'the politics of confrontation.' I suppose that, if this collection has a point, it is the desire of one individual to see the idea of confrontation kept alive.
We believe that it is possible for scientific work to gain some knowledge about the reality of the world, by means of which we can increase out power and in accordance with which we can arrange our life. If this belief is an illusion, then we are in the same position as you. But science has given us evidence by its numerous and important successes that it is no illusion.
To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow, Creeps in this petty pace from day to day To the last syllable of recorded time, And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no more it is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.
There is truth, my boy. But the doctrine you desire, absolute, perfect dogma that alone provides wisdom, does not exist. Nor should you long for a perfect doctrine, my friend. Rather, you should long for the perfection of yourself. The deity is within you, not in ideas and books. Truth is lived, not taught.
I learned regret in the ruins of Tarbfhlaith. I regretted that ambition had ruled my heart instead of affection for my kin. And with the lesson of regret came the gratitude for having life still to move my lips and limbs, and to speak kind words to and embrace those I may not see again on this sweet-smelling earth. I learned that I cannot wait to love what is in my presence, for it or I may well be gone tomorrow. To some, such as Giannon, this lesson poisons the heart with bitterness. But such bitterness has no value and is, in fact, cowardly. For bitterness risks nothing.