When I was reading Anna Karenina, I pretty much took it with me everywhere on the off-chance that I’d have time to read a bit more. Yes, it took a long time to finish, but just think how much longer it would’ve taken if I hadn’t taken it everywhere – I might still be reading it now.
The people I work with know that I always have a book in my bag/locker, and the other bookish people at work know that I’m always reading one book or another, as are they. During the course of reading AK, I talked to a few of these colleagues about it. I think only two others had read & finished it before and, while they both liked the book, neither of them liked Anna’s character. Continue reading →
Some time ago, I came across this quote:
Art and love are the same thing: It’s the process of seeing yourself in things that aren’t you.
It must have been months ago, but I remember reading that quote and thinking about how true it was. And for some reason I didn’t think to write it down or make a note of it anywhere, but it’s just stuck with me, and it resurfaces in my thoughts now and then.
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Although you might be afraid of being vulnerable
Although you know that they will leave, or that it won’t last
Even if there’s a chance they won’t reciprocate your sentiments (at all, or to the same extent)
If it would hurt more to shut them out than to let them in
If you know it would make you happy to make them happy
If you love them at all
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Amongst my random thought trails, I’ve recently revisited certain ponderings regarding selflessness. I remember going to a friend’s psychology lecture back in uni and the lecturer posited that there was no such thing as a truly selfless act because the person doing whatever it was would always gain something from it – if not something material, then perhaps something like gratitude, recognition or reputation.
I’ve tended to agree with that, but recently challenged the idea. You see, I reckon you can have a truly selfless act so long as it remains anonymous. If no one knows that you did it, you cannot receive gratitude or things like that. However, if it is anonymous, any recipients or observers wouldn’t be able to judge that it was truly selfless. It wouldn’t be possible to determine that there wasn’t an ulterior motive. In which case, it still technically does not exist as a truly selfless act.
It’s sort of like that riddle about a tree falling in a forest and whether it makes a sound if no one is there to hear it. Theoretically the sound exists but it can’t really be proven. And once it is proven, the riddle becomes redundant. You know, that sort of thing…
Also, trying to commit selfless acts in this manner sort of goes against the notion that “love unexpressed is not love”. As such, love can never be truly selfless, and it never really is, I guess.