Conveniently Quotes (displaying: 1 - 18 of 18 quotes )
The day of the full moon, when the moon is neither increasing nor decreasing, the Babylonians called Sa-bat, meaning "heart-rest." It was believed that on this day, the woman in the moon, Ishtar, as the moon goddess was known in Babylon, was menstruating, for in Babylon, as in virtually every ancient and primitive society, there had been since the earliest times a taboo against a woman working, preparing food, or traveling when she was passing her monthly blood. On Sa-bat, from which comes our Sabbath, men as well as women were commanded to rest, for when the moon menstruated, the taboo was on everyone. Originally (and naturally) observed once a month, the Sabbath was later to be incorporated by the Christians into their Creation myth and made conveniently weekly. So nowadays hard-minded men with hard muscles and hard hats are relieved from their jobs on Sundays because of an archetypal psychological response to menstruation.
When someone works for less pay than she can live on? when, for example, she goes hungry so that you can eat more cheaply and conveniently? then she has made a great sacrifice for you, she has made you a gift of some part of her abilities, her health, and her life. The 'working poor,' as they are approvingly termed, are in fact the major philanthropists of our society. They neglect their own children so that the children of others will be cared for; they live in substandard housing so that other homes will be shiny and perfect; they endure privation so that inflation will be low and stock prices high. To be a member of the working poor is to be an anonymous donor, a nameless benefactor, to everyone else.
God said, "Thou shalt not kill" - does the theft of a little money make it quite all right for us to do so? If it's said that this commandment applies only to illegal killing, what's to prevent human beings from similarly agreeing among themselves to legalize certain types of rape, adultery, or perjury? Considering that God has forbidden us even to kill ourselves, can we really believe that purely human arrangements for the regulation of mutual slaughter are enough, without any divine authority, to exempt executioners from the sixth commandment? Isn't that like saying that this particular commandment has no more validity than human laws allow it? - in which case the principle can be extended indefinitely, until in all spheres of life human beings decide just how far God's commandments may conveniently be observed.
For there is not a single humanbeing, not even the primitive Negro, not even the idiot, who is so conveniently simple that his being canbe explained as the sum of two or three principal elements; and to explain so complex a man as Harry bythe artless division into wolf and man is a hopelessly childish attempt. Harry consists of a hundred or athousand selves, not of two. His life oscillates, as everyone's does, not merely between two poles, suchas the body and the spirit, the saint and the sinner, but between thousand and thousands.
Question: would I do it the same way all over again? Absolutely - because I learned something along the way. Most people don't learn things alongthe way. Or if they do, they conveniently forget those things when it suits their need. Most people, given a second chance, fuck it up completely. It'sone of those laws of the universe that you can't shake. People, I have noticed, only seem to learn once they get their third chance - after losing andwasting vast sums of time, money, youth, and energy you name it. But still they learn, which is the better thing in the end.
It is not for you to say - you Englishmen, who have conquered your freedom so long ago, that you have conveniently forgotten what blood you shed, and what extremities you proceeded to in the conquering - it is not for you to say how far the worst of all exasperations may, or may not, carry the maddened men of an enslaved nation. The iron that has entered into our souls has gone too deep for you to find it. Leave the refugee alone! Laugh at him, distrust him, open your eyes in wonder at the secret self which smolders in him, sometimes under the every-day respectability and tranquility of a man like me - sometimes under the grinding poverty, the fierce squalor, of men less lucky, less pliable, less patient than I am - but judge us not. In the time of your first Charles you might have done us justice - the long luxury of your freedom has made you incapable of doing us justice now.