Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Commonplace Book....Vigen Guroian

[G. K.] Chesterton observes that when we grow up we tend to think that repetition is a sign of deadness, "like a piece of clockwork.  People feel that if the universe were personal it would vary, if the sun were alive it would dance."  To the contrary, "variation in human affairs is generally brought into them, not by life, but death; by the dying down or breaking off of their strength or desire.  A man varies his movements because of some slight element of failure or fatigue." Whereas repetition, far from signifying monotony and deadness, may signify delight, desire, and vitality…."A child kicks his legs rhythmically through excess, not absence, of life.  Because children have unbounding vitality, because they are spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged.  They always say, 'Do it again' "because there is such delight in that thing or activity.  "It may be," Chesterton concludes, "that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them.  It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy, for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.  The repetition in Nature may not be a mere recurrence; it may be a theatrical encore."  - Vigen Guroian (Introduction of Tending the Heart of Virtue)

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