madeleine.

24 Feb

Sometimes, I get so caught up in thinking about value systems and ideas that I get overwhelmed and shut down. I don’t know where to turn, how to think, and so I just sort of cave in to the uncertainty.

But the thing is : I know that all good things — all things I know to be true — are not ideas that have taken lots of turning around and examining to understand, but are quotes and images and ideas that, upon our first meeting, bring me almost to tears.

“Tears” is a silly, meager way to say it — I mean, a depth of recognition that comes from a place of “aha!, I recognize this! finally, someone said it, in a way I can hold and share and keep.”

And I don’t mean that I tire of thinking; I love thinking. I think its just that ideas I hold dearest to my understanding of truth are ideas that have hit me with the weight of recognition.

It is that initial spark of something more, something higher, that resonates within me. I know it to be true because I have felt it.

I was at my mother’s house this past weekend, and picked up A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L’Engle, one of my favorite authors. I read some quotes of hers today, and I just wanted to share them:

“An infinite question is often destroyed by finite answers. To define everything is to annihilate much that gives us laughter and joy.”
– Madeleine L’Engle, A Circle of Quiet

“I am still every age that I have been. Because I was once a child, I am always a child. Because I was once a searching adolescent, given to moods and ecstasies, these are still part of me, and always will be.”
– Madeleine L’Engle, A Circle of Quiet

“I really do understand that people change, as Wolfi said, not so much from who we are as to who we are.”
– Madeleine L’Engle, A Severed Wasp

“I’ve worked with a lot of artists, Em, and they all have a need that cannot be met by another human being.”
– Madeleine L’Engle, Certain Women

“If I thought I had to say it better than anybody else, I’d never start. Better or worse is immaterial. The thing is that it has to be said, by me. We each have to say it, to say it in our own way. Not of our own will, but as it comes out through us. Good or bad, great or little: that isn’t what human creation is about. It is that we have to try.”
– Madeleine L’Engle, A Circle of Quiet

“If we commit ourselves to one person for life, this is not, as many people think, a rejection of freedom; rather, it demands the courage to move into all the risks of freedom, and the risk of love which is permanent; into that love which is not possession but participation.”
– Madeleine L’Engle, The Irrational Season

“Then there are real people. They’re a very small class, and very wonderful. They’re not creators, they’re not artists, but they can understand and appreciate consciously…”
– Madeleine L’Engle, The Small Rain

“Mostly, no matter how inadequate my playing, the music is all that matters: I am outside time, outside self, in play, in joy. When we can play with the unself-conscious concentration of a child, this is: art: prayer: love.”
– Madeleine L’Engle, A Circle of Quiet

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