Thursday, June 19, 2008

Of Suffering

Suffering is one very long moment. We cannot divide it by seasons. We can only record its moods, and chronicle their return. With us time itself does not progress. It revolves. It seems to circle round one centre of pain. The paralysing immobility of a life every circumstance of which is regulated after an unchangeable pattern, so that we eat and drink and lie down and pray, or kneel at least for prayer, according to the inflexible laws of an iron formula: this immobile quality, that makes each dreadful day in the very minutest detail like its brother, seems to communicate itself to those external forces the very essence of whose existence is ceaseless change. Of seed-time or harvest, of the reapers bending over the corn, or the grape gatherers threading through thevines, of the grass in the orchard made white with broken blossoms or strewn with fallen fruit: of these we know nothing and can know nothing.

Excerpt from "De Profundis" by Oscar Wilde


khany said...

the 'unchanging pattern' of forms, i.e. doing something repeatedly and unerringly every single day. is this 'paralyzing immobility of life' communicated to the 'external forces' whose essence is 'ceaseless change'?

actually, external forces (e.g. seasons, the wind, day and night) are themselves subject to mindless repetition. in my opinion, the difference with respect to human experience is twofold.

first, the period over which external cycles operate may be longer than a mere day. however, the experience of time is so relative. can we truly compare a moment of inspiration to months of drudgery? after all there are a billion nanoseconds in each second :)

second, and more importantly, even while we do the same task a million different times, in exactly the same fashion, it does not necessitate immobility.
because we think.
i might read the same poem, or prayer, a thousand times, being careful to utter it with the same volume, same speed, same intonation. and, yet, each time my experience from having read the poem will be different (better, if the poem has any depth). the experience is transformed from having read the poem before.
because we think.

so it is, in fact, the never ending cyclic nature of the external forces that communicates itself to person who suffers and not vice versa. when we begin to think the cycles of form do not cease but our minds progress out of the loop. no?

Syra said...

that's a beautiful expression of suffering.good find sak! while it lasts the pain resonates and the past, the present and the future all ache. It cuts like a knife.

and khany dude has a pearly point yet again.