In a healthy individual, a broken bone that has healed properly is strongest where it was once broken. You have not lost any life, Henry told himself. You will still get your fair share of years. Yet the quality of his life changed. Once you've been struck by violence, you acquire companions that never leave you entirely: Suspicion, Fear, Anxiety, Despair, Joylessness. The natural smile is taken from you and the natural pleasures you once enjoyed lose their appeal.
I was giving up. I would have given up - if a voice hadn't made itself heard in my heart. The voice said "I will not die. I refuse it. I will make it through this nightmare. I will beat the odds, as great as they are. I have survived so far, miraculously. Now I will turn miracle into routine. The amazing will be seen everyday. I will put in all the hard work necessary. Yes, so long as God is with me, I will not die. Amen.
I can well imagine an athiest's last words: "White, white! L-L-Love! My God!" - and the deathbed leap of faith. Whereas the agnostic, if he stays true to his reasonable self, if he stays beholden to dry, yeastless factuality, might try to explain the warm light bathing him by saying "Possibly a f-f-failing oxygenation of the b-b-brain," and, to the very end, lack imagination and miss the better story.
Religion is just an alternate way of reading reality - you read material reality, and then you add on an extra layer of religiosity that deepens that understanding of reality. Some countries have lost that capacity, or dismissed it or marginalized it.
I am not a particularly natural writer. I am not a person who can write in paragraphs the way some writers do. For me, it's sentence by sentence, sometimes word-by-word. And I revise constantly. It's a very laborious process, but I love doing it.
I know what you want. You want a story that won't surprise you. That will confirm what you already know. That won't make you see higher or further or differently. You want a flat story. An immobile story. You want dry, yeastless factuality.
Life is an interpretation of a series of facts, and that interpretation is really what life is about. So the division between non-fiction and fiction has a certain logic, but it's a very limited one. And by and large, it isn't helpful.
Even when God seemed to have abandoned me, he was watching. Even when he seemed indifferent to my suffering, he was watching. And when I was beyond all hope of saving, he gave me rest. Then he gave me a sign to continue my journey.
I went about the job in a direct way. I took the hatchet in both my hands and vigorously beat the fish on the head with the hammerhead (I still didn’t have the stomach to use the sharp edge). The dorado did the most extraordinary thing as it died: it began to flash all kinds of colours in rapid succession. Blue, green, red, gold, and violet flickered and shimmered neon-like on its surface as it struggled. I felt I was beating a rainbow to death.
I chose the name Pi because it's an irrational number (one with no discernable pattern). Yet scientists use this irrational number to come to a "rational" understanding of the universe. To me, religion is a bit like that, "irrational" yet with it we come together we come to a sound understanding of the universe.
We always see the Holocaust in terms of black-and-white images, barking Germans, cowering Jews. We know very well-known fixed places like Auschwitz, Birkenau, Treblinka, and Beltzec. Instead, war can live in a couple having a spat, when we say, "That was a real war." We very rarely have the Holocaust live in the terms of today. And I think that's a problem, because it becomes ancient history.
I am reminded of a story of Lord Krishna when he was a cowherd. Every night he invites the milkmaids to dance with him in the forest. They come and they dance. The night is dark, the fire in their midst roars and crackles, the beat of the music gets ever faster - the girls dance and dance and dance with their sweet lord, who has made himself so abundant as to be in the arms of each and every girl. But the moment the girls become possessive, the moment each one imagines that Krishna is her partner alone, he... Read more »
These people walk by a widow deformed by leprosy...walk by children dressed in rags living in the street, and they think, 'Business as usual.' But if they perceive a slight against God, it is a different story. Their faces go red, their chests heave mightily, they sputter angry words. The degree of their indignation is astonishing. Their resolve is frightening.
Japanese-owned cargo ship Tsimtsum, flying Panamanian flag, sank July 2nd, 1977, in Pacific, four days out of Manila. Am in lifeboat. Pi Patel my name. Have some food, some water, but Bengal tiger a serious problem. Please advise family in Winnepeg, Canada. Any help very much appreciated. Thank you.
A zoo is not an ideal place for an animal - of course the best place for a chimp is the wilds of Tanzania - but a good zoo is a decent, acceptable place. Animals are far more flexible than we realize. IF they weren't, they wouldn't have survived. But my opinion about zoos came after research. Initially I had the opinion that most people have, that they are jails.
If you took the city of Tokyo and turned it upside down and shook it you would be amazed at the animals that fall out: badgers, wolves, boa constrictors, crocodiles, ostriches, baboons, capybaras, wild boars, leopards, manatees, ruminants, in untold numbers. There is no doubt in my mind that that feral giraffes and feral hippos have been living in Tokyo for generations without seeing a soul.
As for fame, fame felt like nothing. Fame was not a sensation like love or hunger or loneliness, welling from within and invisible to the outside eye. It was rather entirely external, coming from the minds of others. It existed in the way people looked at him or behaved towards him. In that, being famous was no different from being gay, or Jewish, or from a visible minority: you are who you are, and then people project onto you some notion they have.
I have a fierce will to live. Others fight a little, then lose hope. Still others - and I am one of those - never give up. We fight and fight and fight. We fight no matter the cost of battle, the losses we take, the improbability of success. We fight to the very end.
I've never forgotten him. Dare I say I miss him? I do. I miss him. I still see him in my dreams. They are nightmares mostly, but nightmares tinged with love. Such is the strangeness of the human heart. I still cannot understand how he could abandon me so unceremoniously, without any sort of goodbye, without looking back even once. The pain is like an axe that chops my heart.
If you went to a home, kicked down the front door, chased the people who lived there out into the street and said, Go! You are free! Free as a bird! Go! Go! - do you think they would shout and dance for joy? They wouldn't. Birds are not free. The people you've just evicted would sputter, With what right do you throw us out? This is our home. We own it. We have lived here for years. We're calling the police, you scoundrel.
But once a dead God, always a dead God, even resurrected. The Son must have the taste of death forever in his mouth. The Trinity must be tainted by it; there must be a certain stench at the right hand of God the Father. The horror must be real. Why would God wish that upon Himself? Why not leave death to mortals? Why make dirty what is beautiful, spoil what is perfect? -- Love. That was his answer.
We think we live in a global village. We don't. The world is a big and beautiful and incredibly varied place. It can only be known locally, with your two feet on the ground. We should stick to our own gardens, as Voltaire said.