Most of us never stop to consider our blessings; rather, we spend the day only thinking about our problems. But since you have to be alive to have problems, be grateful for the opportunity to have them.
Does there exist an Infinity outside ourselves? Is that infinity One, immanent and permanent, necessarily having substance, since He is infinite and if He lacked matter He would be limited, necessarily possessing intelligence since He is infinite and, lacking intelligence, He would be in that sense finite. Does this Infinity inspire in us the idea of essense, while to ourselves we can only attribute the idea of existence? In order words, is He not the whole of which we are but the part?
That's my town,' Joaquin said. 'What a fine town, but how the buena gente, the good people of that town, have suffered in this war.' Then, his face grave, 'There they shot my father. My mother. My brother-in-law and now my sister.' 'What barbarians,' Robert Jordan said. How many times had he heard this? How many times had he watched people say it with difficulty? How many times had he seen their eyes fill and their throats harden with the difficulty of saying my father, or my brother, or my mother, or my sister? He could not remember how many times he heard them mention their dead in this way. Nearly always they spoke as this boy did now; suddenly and apropos of the mention of the town and always you said, 'What barbarians.
In this new book, I open with a Hebrew quotation nobody is able to understand. This is in order to say, O.K., do you want to play this game? You are my friend, and we go. Otherwise, too bad for me or for you. I think it is untrue that my books are impenetrable. On the contrary, I think I am a sort of great vulgarizer. I put down certain difficult stuff, but I give my readers clues to understand what this kind of stuff is.
No matter what we have come through, or how many perils we have safely passed, or how many imperfect and jagged - in some places perhaps irreparably - our life has been, we cannot in our heart of hearts imagine how it could have been different. As we look back on it, it slips in behind us in orderly array, and, with all its mistakes, acquires a sort of eternal fitness, and even, at times, of poetic glamour.
I've watched a lot of mid-career people, and Yogi Berra says you can observe a lot just by watching. I've concluded that most people enjoy learning and growing. And many are dearly troubled by the self-assessments of mid-career. Such self-assessments are no great problem at your age. You're young and moving up. The drama of your own rise is enough. But when you reach middle age, when your energies aren't what they used to be, then you'll begin to wonder what it all added up to; you'll begin to look for the figure in the carpet of your life. I have some simple advice for you when you begin that process. Don't be too hard on yourself. Look ahead. Someone said that Life is the art of drawing without an eraser. And above all don't imagine that the story is over. Life has a lot of chapters.