Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Rotting Dreams 

An entry in my Sitemeter stats the other day led me back to an old post of mine from 2004. Paulo Coelho’s words quoted there bear repeating, so here are some of them again, since I can find none of my own these days - for reasons perhaps not unconnected with his theme. You can follow more of the path by which he reached his conclusion here.

"And, finally, the third symptom of the passing of our dreams is peace. Life becomes a Sunday afternoon; we ask for nothing grand, and we cease to demand anything more than we are willing to give. In that state, we think of ourselves as being mature; we put aside the fantasies of our youth, and we seek personal and professional achievement. We are surprised when people our age say that they still want this or that out of life. But really, deep in our hearts, we know that what has happened is that we have renounced the battle for our dreams - we have refused to fight the good fight.

“When we renounce our dreams and find peace, we go through a short period of tranquillity. But the dead dreams begin to rot within us and to infect our entire being. We become cruel to those around us, and then we begin to direct this cruelty against ourselves. That's when illnesses and psychoses arise. What we sought to avoid in combat - disappointment and defeat - come upon us because of our cowardice. And one day, the dead, spoiled dreams make it difficult to breathe, and we actually seek death. It's death that frees us from our certainties, from our work, and from that terrible peace of our Sunday afternoons."

~ Paulo Coelho, from "The Pilgrimage" ~

The death of which he speaks need not be physical death - death of the soul or the spirit will serve just as well.

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