What I mean by the slavery of the mind is that state in which men do not know of the alternative. It is something which clogs the imagination, like a drug or a mesmeric sleep, so that a person cannot possibly think of certain things at all. It is not the state in which he says, “I see what you mean; but I cannot think that because I sincerely think this” (which is simply rational): it is one in which he has never thought of the other view; and therefore does not even know that he has never thought of it… The thing I mean is a man’s inability to state his opponent’s view; and often his inability even to state his own.
“But love is life. To die of love is then
The only pass to higher life than this.
All love is death to loving, living men;
All deaths are leaps across clefts to the abyss.
Our life is the broken current, Lord, of thine,
Flashing from morn to morn with conscious shine—
Then first by willing death self-made, then life divine.”
A Book of Strife in the Form of The Diary of an Old Soul
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He was not a man of much education, in the vulgar use of the word; but he was a good way on in that education, for the sake of which, and for no other without it, we are here in our consciousness—the education which, once begun, will, soon or slow, lead knowledge captive, and teaches nothing that has to be unlearned again, because every flower of it scatters the seed of one better than itself.
The main secret of his progress, the secret of all wisdom, was, that with him action was the beginning and end of thought.
He was not one of that cloud of false witnesses, who, calling themselves Christians, take no trouble for the end for which Christ was born, namely, their salvation from unrighteousness—a class that may be divided into the insipid and the offensive, both regardless of obedience, the former indifferent to, the latter contentious for doctrine.
– George MacDonald, Mary Marston, XI
My God, it troubles me I am not better.
More help, I pray, still more. Thy perfect debtor
I shall be when thy perfect child I am grown.
My Father, help me—am I not thine own?
Lo, other lords have had dominion o’er me,
But now thy will alone I set before me:
Thy own heart’s life—Lord, thou wilt not abhor me! — George MacDonald
In honour of Hal Owen
True contentment is a thing as active as agriculture. It is the power of getting out of any situation all that there is in it. It is arduous and it is rare.
– GK Chesterton, The Contented Man