Unreal Nature

December 13, 2014

Waiting for the Cue

Filed under: Uncategorized — unrealnature @ 6:00 am

… if you are asked to achieve an ending somehow, this also means that you are receiving an order to begin anew …

This is from The Poet’s Guide to Life: The Wisdom of Rilke edited and translated by Ulrich Baer (2005):

… One may dream while others are saviors if these dreams are more real to oneself than reality and more necessary than bread. In a word: one ought to turn the most extreme possibility inside oneself into the measure for one’s life, for our life is vast and can accommodate as much future as we are able to carry.

… Something is true only next to something else, and I always think the world has been conceived of with sufficient space to encompass everything: that which has been does not need to be cleared from its spot but only needs to be gradually transformed, just as whatever is yet to occur does not fall from the skies at the last moment but resides always already right next to us, around us and within our heart, waiting for the cue that will summon it to visibility.

[ … ]

… And yet, and yet: how hopeful each individual person is every time again, how real, how well intentioned, how rich. When one then looks at the confused and dreary crowd, it is impossible to grasp that the individual loses himself there in this way as if without a trace.

[ … ]

… It seems to me to result in nothing but disorder when a collective presumes that its efforts (an illusion, incidentally!) may relieve or abolish difficulties schematically. This might impair a person’s freedom much more than suffering itself, which imparts to the individual who confides in it indescribably fitting and almost tender instructions on how to escape it — if not to the outside, then to the inside. The wish to improve another person’s situation presupposes a level of insight into his conditions that even a poet does not possess with regard to a character he himself invented. A person trying to help is even less equipped to do so; his distractedness reaches completion with his gift. The wish to alter and improve another person’s situation means to offer him in lieu of the difficulties in which he has practice and experience other difficulties that might find him even more baffled.

[ … ]

… if you are asked to achieve an ending somehow, this also means that you are receiving an order to begin anew; a new beginning is always possible — who should refuse it?

-Julie

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