"...If I try self-consciously to become a person, I will never be one."
The most real people, those who are able to forget their selfish selves, who
have true compassion, are usually the most distinct individuals. But that comes
second. Personhood comes first, and our civilization tempts, if not teaches, us
to reverse the process.
As usual, we bump into paradox and contradiction.
The people I know who are the most concerned about their individuality,
who probe constantly into motives, who are always turned inwards towards their
own reactions, usually become less and less individual, less and less
spontanteous, more and more afraid of the consequences of giving themselves
away. They are perhaps more consistent than the rest of us, but also less
--Madeleine L'Engle, "A Circle of Quiet
Psalm 139 -- from The Message
God, investigate my life:
get all the facts firsthand.
I am an open book to you;
even from a distance, you know what I'm thinking.
You know when I leave and when I get back;
I am never out of your sight.
You know everything I'm going to say
before I start the first sentence.
I look up behind me and you're there,
then up ahead and you're there, too--
your reassuring presence, coming and going.
This is too much, too wonderful--
I can't take it all in!
Is there anyplace I can go to avoid your Spirit?
to be out of your sight?