One is rated by others as he rates himself.
My wife and child and I were on a camping trip and we stopped in Virginia City. In the Opera House, I saw a photograph of Maude Adams, the famous American actress. It was such a great photograph that creatively I fell in love with her. What if some guy did the same thing and could go back in time?
We have already found a high degree of personal liberty, and we are now struggling to enhance equality of opportunity. Our commitment to human rights must be absolute, our laws fair, our natural beauty preserved; the powerful must not persecute the weak, and human dignity must be enhanced.
It is the story I hoped to tell. It is the story that lies around the edges of the photograph, or at the end of the newspaper account. It's about the lies we tell others to protect them, and about the lies we tell ourselves in order not to acknowledge what we can't bear: that we are alive, for instance, and eating lunch, while bombs are falling, and refugees are crammed into camps, and the news come toward us every hour of the day. And what, in the end, do we do?
These were the lovely bones that had grown around my absence: the connections-sometimes tenuous, sometimes made at great cost, but often magnificent-that happened after I was gone. And I began to see things in a way that let me hold the world without me in it. The events that my death wrought were merely the bones of a body that would become whole at some unpredictable time in the future. The price of what I came to see as this miraculous body had been my life.