Sunday, August 15, 2010

Catatonically Speaking

"The world is not respectable; it is mortal, tormented, confused, deluded forever; but it is shot through with beauty, with love, with glints of courage and laughter; and in these, the spirit blooms timidly, and struggles to the light amid the thorns." (George Santayana)

Like many wordsmiths, I use quotations as fodder to inspire my work, and to inspire my approach toward daily existence. When I came upon the above quotation in a classroom at my school on my first day back to work, I was stunned by its simple, elegant veracity. It encapsulates my entire philosophy, which is a bewildering blend of misanthropic and altruistic.

In short, it's the moments of beatific glory, rapturous love and gleeful amusement that we should embrace in times of trouble, because the times of trouble seem to permeate our lives more than the hours of happiness. In fact, I daresay that if you are happier than you are troubled, then you are not living deeply enough. To live deeply is to experience life with hedonistic emotion, indulging your sensory faculties with audacious abandon.

The world is indeed tormented and confused, because people dwell in a delusional fog, ever fearful of their vibrant potential to live radically meaningful, multi-dimensional lives.

Fear is the great annihilator, so we must annihilate fear. Given the implausibility of actually achieving this lofty aim, we should at least act to temper fear's effect in our lives, so that love and laughter are more prominent than torment and delusion.

May the poesie, polemics, satire and reviews in Issue 18 in some way provoke you to live your life with more staggering intensity, and help you through that long dark tunnel of confusion and fear.

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