“If you expect the worst from a person you can never be disappointed.”
“We're a government that believes in everybody having the illusion of free will.”
“When the State withers, humanity flowers.”
“When we pray we admit defeat.”
“Perhaps, all these years, the historiographers had been unwilling to recognize history as a spiral, perhaps because a spiral was so difficult to describe. Easier to photograph the spiral from the top, easier to flatten the spring into a coil.”
“I am instructed by the Home Secretary to read out the following. . . . It is a prayer devised by the Ministry of Propaganda. . . . ‘It is conceivable that the forces of death which at present are ravaging the esculent life of this planet have intelligence, in which case we beseech them to leave off. It we have done wrong--allowing in our blindness natural impulse to overcome reason--we are, of course, heartily sorry. But we submit that we have already suffered sufficiently for this wrong and we firmly resolve never to sin again. Amen.”
“Why are we fighting? We're fighting because we're soldiers. That's simple enough, isn't it? For what cause are we fighting? Simple again. We're fighting to protect our country, and, in a wider sense, the whole of the English-Speaking Union. From whom? No concern of ours. Where? Wherever we're sent. Now, Foxe, I trust all this is perfectly clear.”
“Late December, in Bridgwater, Somerset, Western Province, a middle-aged man named Thomas Wharnton, going home from work shortly after midnight, was set upon by youths. These knifed him, stripped him, spitted him, basted him, carved him, served him—all openly and without shame in one of the squares of the town. A hungry crowd clamoured for hunks and slices, kept back—that the King's Peace might not be broken—by munching and dripping greyboys.”
“The more sin he sees, the more his belief in Original Sin is confirmed. Everyone likes to have his deepest convictions confirmed: that is one of the most abiding of human satisfaction.”
“What's done can't be undone. How do I fit into this new world? I should have been warned, somebody should have told me. How was I to know that that sort of world wasn't going to go on for ever?”
“What destroys the dream? What destroys it, eh?..........Disappointment. Disappointment. Disappointment.”
“History is a wheel. This sort of world can't go on for ever either.”
“Was war, then, the big solution after all? Were those crude early theorists right? War the great aphrodisiac, the great source of world adrenaline, the solvent of ennui, Angst, melancholia, accidia, spleen? War itself a massive sexual act, culminating in a detumescence which was not mere metaphorical dying? War, finally, the controller, the trimmer and excisor, the justifier of fertility?”
“Je m'en vais chercher un grand peut-etre - I go to seek a great perhaps.”
“Even so, I was proud of myself for taking action at all. I didn't hide or run away or pretend the ugliness didn't happen. I stood up and said something that was true. I said it out loud, and by doing so, I was standing up for lots of people, not just me.”
“A common question asked of Mr. Fenn was, “How old is the boy?” to which Mr. Fenn’s reply, year after year, was, “He has been somewhere between twelve and thirteen since the day I laid eyes on him.”
“He put his fist against his chest. “Burn, Maddygirl,” he said. Then he turned and left her in the flickering gloom and thunder.”
“He turned away from Leafpool, bristling with fury. “I hate being blind. I wish I had never been born!”
“آدم: «أينما و ِجَدت ُ حواءُ ... وجَدت الجنَّةُ.»”
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