For the ordinary man is passive. Within a narrow circle (home life, and perhaps the trade unions or local politics) he feels himself master of his fate, but against major events he is as helpless as against the elements. So far from endeavoring to influence the future, he simply lies down and lets things happen to him.
Whoever is winning at the moment will always seem to be invincible.
Part of the reason for the ugliness of adults, in a child's eyes, is that the child is usually looking upwards, and few faces are at their best when seen from below.
Four legs good, two legs bad.
The main motive for ''nonattachment'' is a desire to escape from the pain of living, and above all from love, which, sexual or non-sexual, is hard work.
He was an embittered atheist (the sort of atheist who does not so much disbelieve in God as personally dislike Him).
Autobiography is only to be trusted when it reveals something disgraceful. A man who gives a good account of himself is probably lying, since any life when viewed from the inside is simply a series of defeats.
The books one reads in childhood, and perhaps most of all the bad and good bad books, create in one's mind a sort of false map of the world, a series of fabulous countries into which one can retreat at odd moments throughout the rest of life, and which in some cases can survive a visit to the real countries which they are supposed to represent.
Category: Books And Reading
Not to expose your true feelings to an adult seems to be instinctive from the age of seven or eight onwards.
One cannot really be a Catholic and grown up.
One can love a child, perhaps, more deeply than one can love another adult, but it is rash to assume that the child feels any love in return.
To accept civilization as it is practically means accepting decay.
Throughout recorded time... there have been three kinds of people in the world, the High, the Middle, and the Low. They have been subdivided in many ways, they have borne countless different names, and their relative numbers, as well as their attitude towards one another, have varied from age to age: but the essential structure of society has never altered. Even after enormous upheavals and seemingly irrevocable changes, the same pattern has always reasserted itself, just as a gyroscope will always return to equilibrium, however far it is pushed one way or the other. The aims of these three groups are entirely irreconcilable.
To see what is in front of one's nose requires a constant struggle.
Category: Common Sense
The ''Communism'' of the English intellectual is something explicable enough. It is the patriotism of the deracinated.
Category: Communism And Socialism