06 September 2011

The Permanent Pulsation of the Soul

The next to last page of Chesterton's Orthodoxy:
The mass of humans have been forced to be happy about the little things, but sad about the big ones. Nevertheless (I offer my last dogma defiantly) it is not native to man to be so. A human is more himself, is more humanlike, when joy is the fundamental thing in him, and grief the superficial. Melancholy should be an innocent interlude, a tender and fugitive frame of mind; praise should be the permanent pulsation of the soul. Pessimism is at best an emotional half-holiday; joy is the uproarious labor by which all things live.
--G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy (repr.; Ignatius, 1995), 166.

No comments: