Obstinately Quotes (displaying: 1 - 14 of 14 quotes )
Let me add, however, that in every idea of genius or in every new human idea, or, more simply still, in every serious human idea born in anyone's brain, there is something that cannot possibly be conveyed to others, though you wrote volumes about it and spent thirty-five years in explaining your idea; something will always be left that will obstinately refuse to emerge from your head and that will remain with you for ever and you will die without having conveyed to anyone what is perhaps the most vital point of your idea.
Why in fact should one tell the truth? What obliges us to do it? And why do we consider telling the truth to be a virtue? Imagine that you meet a madman, who claims that he is a fish and that we are all fish. Are you going to argue with him? Are you going to undress in front of him and show him that you don't have fins? Are you going to say to his face what you think?...If you told him the whole truth and nothing but the truth, only what you thought, you would enter into a serious conversation with a madman and you yourself would become mad. And it is the same way with the world that surrounds us. If I obstinately told the truth to its face, it would mean that I was taking it seriously. And to take seriously something so unserious means to lose all one's own seriousness. I have to lie, if I don't want to take madmen seriously and become a madman myself.
I am simultaneously and contradictorily both happy and unhappy: 'to succeed' or 'to fail' have for me only ephemeral, contingent meanings (this does not stop my desires and sorrows from being violent ones); what impels me, secretly and obstinately, is not tactical: I accept and I affirm, irrespective of the true and the false, of success and failure; I am withdrawn from all finality, I live according to chance...
...[His] past had now risen, only the pleasures of it seeming to have lost their quality. Night and day, without interruption save of brief sleep which only wove retrospect and fear into a fantastic present, he felt the scenes of his earlier life coming between him and everything else, as obstinately as when we look through the window from a lighted room, the objects we turn our backs on are still before us, instead of the grass and the trees. The successive events inward and outward were there in one view: though each might be dwelt on in turn, the rest still keep their hold in the consciousness.
All the same, I should like it all plain and clear," said he obstinately, putting on his business manner (usually reserved for people who tried to borrow money off him), and doing his best to appear wise and prudent and professional and live up to Gandalf's recommendation. "Also I should like to know about risks, out-of-pocket expenses, time required and remuneration, and so forth"--by which he meant: "What am I going to get out of it ? and am I going to come back alive?
Always I find when I begin to write there is one character who obstinately will not come alive...He never does the unexpected thing, he never surprises me, he never takes charge. Every other character helps, he only hinders. And yet one cannot do without him. I can imagine a God feeling in just that way about some of us. The saints, one would suppose, in a sense create themselves. They come alive. They are capable of the surprising act or word. The stand outside the plot, unconditioned by it. But we have to be pushed around. We have the obstinancy of non-existence. We are inextricably bound to the plot, and wearily God forces us, here and there, according to his intention, characters without poetry, without free will, whose only importance is that somewhere, at some time, we help to furnish the scene in which a living character moves and speaks, perhaps the saints with the opportunities for their free will.
To muse for long unwearied hours with my attention riveted to some frivolous device upon the margin, or in the typography of a book? to become absorbed for the better part of a summer's day in a quaint shadow falling aslant upon the tapestry, or upon the floor? to lose myself for an entire night in watching the steady flame of a lamp, or the embers of a fire? to dream away whole days over the perfume of a flower? to repeat monotonously some common word, until the sound, by dint of frequent repetition, ceased to convey any idea whatever to the mind? to lose all sense of motion or physical existence in a state of absolute bodily quiescence long and obstinately persevered in? Such were a few of the most common and least pernicious vagaries induced by a condition of the mental faculties, not, indeed, altogether unparalleled, but certainly bidding defiance to any thing like analysis or explanation.
and even when I was broken the way sometimes one can be broken, and even though I had fallen, I found upon arising that I was stronger than before, that the glories, if I may call them that, which I had loved so much and that had been darkened in my fall, were shinning even brighter and nearly everytime subsequently I have fallen and darkness has come over me, they have obstinately arisen, not as they were, but brighter.