A letter to Babs Lake from Gilda Trillim shortly after the Uber Cup in 1957

I found the following fascinating letter in the Trillim Archives in Beijing during my last research trip there. Her speculations are perhaps a little too bold, but do seem to portend certain trends in Mormon Theology we see today. It was written to Babs Lake and dated May, 19 1957. It’s intriguing to me because she draws on the work of Henri Bergson, the French/Polish philosopher whose work has fascinated me for a number of years. Bergson would have been much more well-known in 1957 than he is today, but her tying his work to Mormon thought and theology reflects an extraordinarily deep understanding of contemporaneous evolutionary philosophy.

I am pleased that interest Trillim’s work continues to grow. Her books on Amazon have increased in rank dramatically in the last few months. Her wiki page has also been updated. Perhaps most pleasing of all an international conference on Trillim Studies is planned for next year in Beijing at which it will be announced (and obviously already has been because I’m telling you about it) that the Gilda Trillim Society is being formed and that a new journal is being launched called, The Gilda Trillim Quarterly. I cannot tell you how exciting I find these developments.

I’ve transcribed the whole letter, which was written in Trillim’s rather bold, sloppy cursive. It took a bit of work to decipher. Some words I just could not make out (noted below in <>s). She is also an abysmal speller, to which I have deep and abiding sympathies. It is rather long. If Gilda Trillim holds no interest for you then I would avoid this long post, as fascinating as it is.

_______________________________________________

Dear Babs,

I must tell you about the mornings. At first light a strident rooster floods my dreams with his urgent boasts and slowly, very slowly I slide into the realities of this new world. The air is heavy, thick with a first-light temptation to pull the sheets over my head to reprimand the dawn for its disturbance, but the bright glow shining through the jalousie carries with it the humid smells of breakfast fires, the river’s stench of human wastes, and the essence of odd foreignness, which drives my bare feet to the wood slats of the floor. I sit up panting in a slight panic because I have trouble remembering where I am and what I’m doing amid such strangeness. Then I fall back into the bed. I lie for a while; running through the metaphors that I will use to describe this place to you. The rattle of a cart is like . . . the rattle of a cart. The voice of the woman in the street berating her husband resembles . . . the voice of a woman berating her husband. I think I am thwarted in my literary attempts because the otherness of this place is too new. Too striking. My mind finds it is all too novel to make the connections between these fresh sensual experiences and mere words. In short, everything is like nothing. I arise each morning on the edge of horizon over which I’ve never peered. No wonder delight seems my constant companion.

Well, it’s time to give you the tale in full. You’ve received postcard after postcard from me promising that I will give you the details in the elusive ‘soon.’ How weary you must be at my promises and lack of delivery! Well, settle back in your chair and prepare to have unleashed upon your beautiful head more details then you could possibly ever want. You poor dear. With friends like me, it’s either feast or famine on the news front I’m afraid.

As you heard, we demolished the Danish in the final match of the Uber Cup. It was glorious. It was a first-class smashing. I’ll have to say this without pussyfooting rococo hubris, because the fact is I was brilliant. I had a move that flummoxed and devastated my opponents. The press covering the tournament started calling it the ‘Trillim Lift’ (if you can imagine). You’ve played me enough that you’ll recognize the move—the one in which I take a lob with my back turned to the assault, racquet arcing downward from my backcourt directed stance to catch the shuttle on the upswing of a backhand, on the upward side of the parabola framed by my swing (did that even make any sense?). It looks like the motion will lift the shuttle high and toward midcourt. I think what devastates my opponent is that it looks like a lucky return, badly played, and so they plan for a smash. What they don’t expect is the fierce slice I’ve managed to perfect, which sends the shuttlecock driving just over the net fast and low. It’s devastating, even if I do say so myself.

After the tournament at a banquet honoring our American victory, a British fellow and an Indian filmmaker approached me about helping others learn my trick. How could I turn down a trip to Pune, the birthplace of our sport? My novel is well-stuck and I was doubting my ability to pull it off by the publisher’s deadline (soft, self-imposed so not a fixed point) so thought why not? I knew that you would yet be busy helping your family with the lambing and other Spring activates so felt no rush to get back. So here I am in India!

Remember that semester we accidently took that philosophy class? I still laugh when I think we signed up for a graduate course in Mereology thinking it was a class in mere-ology—an approach to art from the most minimal of expressions—like my own novels. I thought we would be listening to Moondog’s music or looking at Mondrian’s paintings. What’s funny is we didn’t know we were in the wrong class until mid term! Hilarious. But you’ll remember Professor Boehme was always trying to carve the world into its parts and patch together wholes and, as you’ll recall, pretty much wholes were just sums of parts. (Remember his thick Austrian accent trying to get us to learn mathematical Set Theory (Ze Un-i-yon ov de elements iz ze whol-le)! I still think he was in love you, you got the impossible ninety-eight on your midterm while I got a twenty-three? Come now, we studied together the whole time! Oh, the romance that could have been. Eh?

Anyway, my sponsors, the American and the Indian (They are paranoid and secretive and likely delusional, but they have asked me not to write in a letter their names as ‘communiqués’ might be read in the post office here (‘Hello’ to whomsoever is reading this! Say hello to your paranoid handlers)) were determined to design a set of techniques that would make the ‘Trillim Lift’ just a matter of following steps A through Z. Like Prof. Boehme they thought that the ‘technique’ could just be carved from a set of individual movements that when added together could be summed into the successful execution of the move. What a disaster. First they tried to film me doing it, but I couldn’t! I just couldn’t do it on command. They would lob at me perfect set ups for the move, but when I tried to do it, I just fell apart (and sometimes even fell down). I just could not manage it when I was trying to think about it. This won’t surprise you. The real execution is nothing less than the instinctual level of play that occurs during a match, much like when I throw a tennis ball to our dog and she becomes one with the entire enterprise. Nothing surprising in the observation that it does not take thinking to play badminton well and that once you’ve given your brain the motions over and over it gets good at doing it without bothering to inform you what it is doing. Some of the German philosophers are making a big deal of this I understand, pretending there is keen insight in what the psychologists have realized since James. To me it is not interesting or surprising that the brain learns to take short cuts away from conscious thought and its grinding slowness (especially in me).

But what does intrigue me is what I am and where the me comes from when doing that lift! (Always back to existentialism, heh?) First, Boehme’s little part/whole debacle fails! Set theory cannot touch it, because it’s a folded up thing that no simple summation or partition can ever get its greedy little claws into.

Certainly, with Boemhe, I would agree I’m a boatload of objects. Even the ‘lift’ is an object (and yes I’m convinced a situation can often be an object, since all objects are situations!). So what is the lift? It has its roots in hopscotch, I think. The long hours I spent throwing my brother’s hockey puck just so—it would have to land flat or it would roll away. Hop, hop, jump, hop, pick up, hop, hop, jump, hop, jump. Those motions were essential. Then there was the invention of badminton, the rules, the culture, the tools, the implements, rising into existence like a poem or a novel. Then it had to come to Idaho and capture the mind of Mrs. Beckwith who started a team. A thousand coincidences bouncing around things until I find myself in England, spinning around at just the right moment to capture the cup and crown, and the imagination of film makers who want to mass-produce the lift in an assembly line of motions. But the motions are not just pieces of a puzzle. They are rooted and grounded in the past in a way that cannot be separated from that past. Can it? I did learn the basics of the game in a way similar to what they are trying to do. Why should my lift be different from that, such that I think it unteachable? But maybe you need more than only the components of the lift, maybe you have to start by teaching hopscotch?

(I can see you raising a finger preparing to dissect this, your mouth twisting in that way that denotes flummoxed puzzlement, your brow furrowing, then lifting to one side and you asking, “So if the lift is an object, what sort is it? It certainly can be filmed. It has certain boundaries, fluffy one ones true, but certainly there is a beginning and end. The beginning might be when the shuttle crosses the net? Or when your brain first discerns the trajectory of the shuttlecocks motion? Its end defined after the follow-through of your strike?” Any and all of these things I suppose.)

The point is, my dear Miss. Lake, that the lift comes from nothing necessary, the lift is a complex object (if you’ll grant that), embedded in a game called badminton that emerged because a bunch of colonials were bored, in a culture without a tennis court, in a given political moment in the history of the world. There is nothing necessary about this game. It slouched out of nowhere, depending on gobs of little accidents. It could just as easily exist in this world or not. And yet once there was badminton, then the lift could follow. Badminton suddenly creates space for all kinds of new objects, some tools, some the decorations of badminton culture, some motions and interactions within the game itself. It could have been that it never appeared, or something quite different could have bubbled into existence, like hitting small baskets with your elbows while standing on a balance beam (imagine the motions that that would have brought into the world! Motions as absurd as the lift out of context, but brilliant in the game of balance beam elbow basketing!) To do the lift outside of badminton would be nonsensical. Yet within the game it becomes the means of a powerful strike, which combines with many other objects, some of them very complex: Me, the shuttle, the net, my opponent, the court, the rules of the game, the audience, the framework of a contest, the other team mates . . .you get my drift? It is twisted up in a thousand knots.

Remember our class at the university on the Nobel Prize winners and our reading Bergson? Remember his book Creative Evolution? All of life is like this. Like badminton, things come into existence contingently, not necessarily. He argued that the beauty and wonder of life, its variety and amazing beauty emerge from such events as created the ‘lift.’ One thing shows up in life’s great drama and opens a space for another. He wrote how evolution creates spaces that create more spaces and thus creativity enters the world and with creativity the possibility of freedom.

So I suspect you know me well enough to see where this is going. Religion! Ha ha it’s never far from my thoughts. I drive you crazy with it. So just roll your eyes and sit back and endure what follows. You have always been such an indulgent friend.

You’ll remember how crazy I used to get at my father’s ridiculous view that God and the eternities were just an accumulation of more stuff. More wives, more children, more and more acquisitions of worlds. An eternal game of monopoly with more and more squares on the board and more and more houses and hotels piling up on the spaces? Ack. How boring that seemed. An eternity of the same game? Forever? You’d have to have some sort of heavenly opium to keep you happy and sappy enough to make that appealing. And for women? Quadruple Ack. Such an eternity terrifies me. Eternity alone terrifies me, but this is horrific beyond imagination.

But when I look around at life. Its diversity. Its ongoing motions of creation and renewal. The magic and wonder of birds singing, frogs piping, trees flowering, pollinators pollinating, all emerging in Darwin’s ‘tangled bank’ to more and more complexity my heart thrills! Do not the eternities share some kinship with the magic and wonder of life itself? Creative evolution? Freedom? Are these not things we can expect the heavens to contain? Is not the fabric that makes up life and badminton some sort of eternal principle? Are not the ‘Trillim lift’ and the New Guinean mouse bandicoot both objects that have emerged from deep time as a result of a thousand contingent spaces being opened and closed and that form the basis and holiness of complexity?

This is what I love about Mormonism my root fabric. God is not a simple object without parts, without mereology (Boemhe would be so proud I know what the word means at last), without history, without emotion, without meaning, but rather is complex, multiplies. Mormonism looks and God and sees not just the ‘From Alpha to Omega’ But postulates an Alpha-prime that gave rise to Alpha.

So here I go. Without you here to contain me, I go wild. I turn on my imagination and I see a God who has emerged from something. Perhaps, we are on an ecological journey. Like that which life shows us here on earth. Maybe the eternities hold wonder ahead! Maybe new structures will come into existence that never existed before! Maybe diversity and creation are eternal principles and God, us, and all of this, will become a part of something even grander more wondrous, larger, more magnificent. An eternity of evolutionary unfolding into more wondrous and diverse things.

This is different from the static God of most religions who sits locked in a deterministic eternity of going through motions ordained by Himself or who-knows-what. Nor the view that God is sitting in some role that just sits out there waiting to be filled by some worthy applicant. No, this is a God who is participating in life. Life! The kind of life Earth so readily and amazingly displays. An eternal life where new ‘lifts’ emerge as the game changes and requires responses to that change.

So I wonder, dear Babs. What if the eternities are open? What if there is no set eternity to which we are heading? No teleology as Bergson argued to which life must go. What if new emergences occur on the grandest scale of all and God Himself is participating in a dynamic and open existence? In Earth life we see our own bodies as a set of relationships, processes and structures that have formed alliances of other entities, societies of chemicals, bacteria, and such that all work together creating something complex and beautiful. What if eternal life is the similar formation of relationships, alliances of objects many and varied changing. What sort of object would the relationships and federations of eternal beings make? Wondrous beyond the wonders of this Earth life? Of course. Of course. Of course.

Maybe this is why we return again and again to the creation in our sacred places and in our scriptures? To be reminded of life in all of its manifestations! In all its wonderful surprises. (And yes, if God cannot be surprised, then He cannot laugh, and if He cannot laugh, then he cannot weep, and if He cannot weep then we are nothing but reel after reel of a motion picture or television program and our lives are no more meaningful or subject to change than an “I Love Lucy” rerun (not that I don’t LOVE that show).

This is why Satan’s little scheme failed. He tried to make a machine, when nothing short of ‘life; will do for the heavens. That’s why Christ’s atonement is so powerful and important, it became necessary because of the situation that arose. It’s a response to the emergence of a new smashing strike to which one must respond or lose the game. I cannot imagine God is up there following some rulebook (or cookbook) that maps out all that must or should happen.

And so is this not grace? Is not the ‘lift’ embedded in a game I’ve been given, been handed, and with which I interact and grow in skill, in meaning and in achieving something grander? Soon, if the ‘lift’ spreads (through the use of this film seems an unlikely route at this point, given how it is going), a response will be developed. It too will spread and the game will have changed. New opportunities will emerge, within the game, new ‘lifts’ new ‘responses’ will come and go. I’m sure if I were plopped down in a game in 1984 (have you read it yet! Get on it!) I would find myself lost. But that’s how evolution works. That’s how growth happens. Creativity. Meaning. These matter. An eternity without growth? I cannot imagine it.

Well, Babs, I’m diatribing again. These are conversations best reserved to be held under a bright Milky Way burning across a coal black sky on a cool desert night. When I get back, perhaps we can take the Greyhound down to Zions or Arches and spend some time in real speculation. Give my love to your mother and father. I hope they are well.

With unbound affection I am your,

Gilda

Comments

  1. What does God mean when He says that His course is one eternal round?

    I think there is a misunderstanding. We have a hard time imagining that God does the same things over and over again forever because we ourselves get tired. Nothing retains a charge, for us. We might even have seen enough full moons rising, at some point, and may then say – I can end my existence now. But that is because we are fallen creatures. The universe doesn’t need to be open-ended, for me. It can contain an astonishing but ultimately limited variety as long as those things that do or can exist retain their charge.

    When I returned to the church and the Holy Spirit once again entered my life and began scrubbing my connectors, I noticed almost immediately how life and the things in it began to regain their charge. Things I had loved but whose charge had become muted or lost suddenly opened up again. In short, righteousness can be identified in that it feels ageless – something like, but slightly better than, being forever young.

  2. In other words. Eternity may contain many many new and marvelous things. But I’m not looking forward to it because of the newness, but because it will be the same as what we have here. That ‘we will enjoy the same sociality we enjoy here’, only accompanied by ‘everlasting burnings.’

    I like the verb _volver a_, in Spanish. To return to do again thing. That is what eternity seems like, to me, volver a empezar. A constant returning to the beginning. And always new, as if for the first time.

  3. Let me know as soon as a bound edition of the Collected Works of Gilda Trillim are available for pre-order. Seriously. I’d get it just to have a hard copy of the previously posted ‘My Turn On Earth’.

  4. Mark Brown says:

    All these wonderful things, slouching out of nowhere.

  5. It seems to me that the very very best thing you can do if your life has started to seem dull to you, and the thought of an eternity of it has started to seem unbearable, is to go to Sacrament Meeting this week and take the Sacrament less glibly and routinely, and let the covenant penetrate a little deeper, and then let come what will.

  6. Thomas, I appreciate your thoughts. I think Gilda would interpret One Eternal Round as might be spoken of by life’s history on Earth, as in ‘evolving life has been one eternal round of variation, selection and inheritance.’ Such that its is the process which goes through one eternal round, not the objects inside.

    Let me just add, Thomas, that I love your expressions of faith and the way you describe it. Far more important than any theological speculation are the encounters with the spirit that you describe so well. So thank you.

  7. Until this post I had no idea Hilda Trillium held an interest for me. To be honest I originally started reading because I love the trillium flowers here in Oregon, and hike several trails, year after year to enjoy their beauty and inspiration. They always make me feel closer to God, a little less confined to the earth from which the trillium grow, and then spring forth with an incredible beauty.

    Although I have no doubt the names are not a direct connection between “my trillium” and Gilda, I find this letter gives me much the same feeling of reaching and stretching, the veil a little thinner through the images of her words. If this letter is representative of a keen intellect, a sweeping sense of eternal history, and an amazing ability to make it intellectually based, but imminently approachable, I may just be one of her newest fans.

    I don’t use Amazon, but I will look up her work at Powells.com and support my favorite bookstore, and what just might become my next literary crush. Thanks for introducing us, SteveP, and for taking the time to transcribe the letter of introduction! :-)

  8. Careful, Julia, look at the wiki page I linked to see Gilda’s true nature. There maybe quantum realities here that bear tapping into. In fact, to all readers, to not look at the Wiki page link would be a terrible mistake.

  9. Btw, I am not sure if it is just my computer, but none of the links seem to be working. Would you be willing to give me a few titles to look up? Also, I was really hoping the link to the International conference would work so that I could check it out, but that link gave me an error as well.

  10. The wiki link didn’t work either, but I will go and search for her.

  11. It worked, read carefully. ;-)

  12. I understand Nietzsche better and better as I get older. His idea that the religious impulse divides us from this life, I begin to get that. The impulses to forgetting and silence and surrender. I trust those impulses less and less, especially without being balanced by the impulses to retain (be sealed to) and speak (words without end) and conquer (worlds without end).

    Thanks, Steve. You’re a wonderful writer and thinker.

  13. All the link tells me is that I am out of my timeline, and I did not find her doing a direct search of her name. Is this a late April fools day joke?

  14. Okay, do it was not a competition held in China 1957, it was won by the US, but there were no matches held in China or East Asia until the 1980s.

    So, what is the point of a fictional character who is interesting and easily meets general topics of discussion today?

    I am willing to admit to being duped. I just am interested in the goal in duping the gullible.

  15. Julia,
    Addressing modern concerns through >Pseudepigraphy is a venerable didactic method. Even Joseph Smith participated in this ancient tradition. Modern words have been placed for rhetorical purposes in the mouths of Enoch, Abraham, and Moses. And now, SteveP joins in with giving voice to the honorable Gilda Trillim.

  16. Thomas Parkin has asked a very interesting philosophical question: What is it about newness that makes it more desirable than a fullness of what already is? Gilda assumes that newness is a condicio sine qua non for human happiness. But any number of profound religious thinkers, Christian and not, have assumed otherwise. What (more than personal intuition or preference, neither of which is particularly reliable) makes one assumption better than the other?

    I’m not arguing against Gilda here. In fact, my own assumptions are closer to hers than to Thomas’s. But his question is a crucial one. What if the desire for newness is just a way of being distracted from the fullness of reality?

    It would be better if I could have Gilda’s cake and eat Thomas’s too, but I’m not sure how to do that.

  17. Don’t feel duped Julia (and deep apologies If you were made to feel such), I’m just following the example of my hero Borges.

    Jim F! I’m not sure if I agree with Gilda either (my relationship with Trillim is similar to a certain Dane’s relationship with Johannes Climacus). However, in her favor I think it’s not only newness she is keying in on (although that is part of it), but diversity, multiplicity, and through those, creativity. Which we see abundantly in life as we know it on Earth. As I take it, she is pointing to a suggestion that life itself structures new kinds of life and that creates new kinds of life impossible before. So newness is a byproduct, but not an aim.

    I think your and Thomas’ point that there is a temptation to let newness become the goal. The obsessions of fashion seem to be the result of this kind of misalignment. But I think Gilda would agree it cannot be the goal, and I like the idea of continually ‘returning to a beginning.’ However, in every such return, as Thomas Wolfe pointed out, you can’t go home again, and what newness you find in the return is conditioned on the fresh things (insights, depths, etc.) that you bring to the old. So while you may come again and again to the same place, if its not a new you, then it’s more of a spinning the wheel in the mud than a healthy renewal.

  18. SteveP, I won’t speak for Thomas, but I didn’t intend to warn of the danger that newness become the goal, though such a warning would be in order if someone is craving newness. The point was that Gilda assumes that change, multiplicity, variation, etc. are a good. As I said, I’m sympathetic to her way of seeing things, but that doesn’t change the fact that she didn’t explicitly give an argument for her position (or I missed it–I should go back and reread, but I won’t do that until I’ve posted this).

    Here (#17) you’ve given such an argument: everything we know about life entails change, diversity, multiplicity, and creativity. So it is is reasonable to assume that eternal life would also entail those things. I like that argument.

    The question then becomes the one you address at the end of your comment, the Heraclitean question of how change and permanency are related. That’s a particularly appropriate question after the developments of post-Newtonian physics, when the “Unmoved Mover” became, implicitly, the “Unstopped Stopper.” How do we account for permanence–meaning–in a world of constant flux? It’s mereology again, but mereology in a nonstatic ultimate reality.

    Query: How did poor Jakob Boehme get roped into teaching Gilda’s class? And why in the world was his topic mereology?

  19. “Query: How did poor Jakob Boehme get roped into teaching Gilda’s class? And why in the world was his topic mereology?” You know those mystics–always trying to make a buck, holding lectures on anything as long as it will put some cold hard cash in their pockets.

    “How do we account for permanence–meaning–in a world of constant flux? It’s mereology again, but mereology in a nonstatic ultimate reality.” Jim I honestly think this is the question that needs exploring. I’ll push it further and extend your question into What even defines and allows meaning and value in a dynamic universe? These seem to be the important (and hard) questions, how does it arrise? How is it maintained? I think something tacking the right questions is in the direction of aesthetics, which seems to be closely related to the kind of creativity, and freedom that Bergson keyed in on. Take French cuisine (perhaps you could whip up some examples to bring this thought experiment home?) in some sense it is both set and identifiable, but it is also in a constant state of flux and development, exploration, and experimentation. Its its variation complexity that allows it to move forward into new and exciting things–but it also has a core that remains, something that makes it uniquely French. I guess I’m seeing that some change and permanency are necessary to keep value and meaning, but the changes are built on long chains of–what? I’m not sure. I’m still thinking about Gilda’s ideas here and there is a lot of things I’m not sure how to fit together. Which is a long and convoluted way of saying, “Wow. That’s a good question!”

  20. Steve-
    I will make sure not to read your posts when I have a migraine. Lol

    Julia

  21. I’d like to announce–and I hope this comment doesn’t get deleted by the heavy-handed moderators here at ByUncommonConsent–that the Beijing hijacking of Trillim is not supported by all current students of Trillim. Peck claims to have discovered this recent document in Beijing, which is rather odd considering that Peck hasn’t been to Beijing in the past decade, and that this post appears shortly after he returned from a clandestine visit to St. Petersburg, Russia. The Russian contingent of Trillim Studies (RTS) contested the location of the upcoming conference, but were overruled by a few technicalities raised by the Beijing crowd which I need not recapitulate here. Needless to say, RTS has an announcement to make in the next few weeks that will serve as something of a bombshell in Trillim studies and will hopefully pull studies back towards the land Trillim called her birthplace.

    Regards,

    Quickmere Graham
    Secretary, Russian Trillim Studies

  22. Mommie Dearest says:

    I finally got around to reading this after a busy week, and just want to say thanks for the unusual presentation of thought-provoking content. It gives me faith that there might be satisfying answers to difficult questions after all.

    Also, Julia, you are in good company. A well-populated company.

  23. Thanks MD!

    QG, Your little sceme will fail. St. Petersburg, St. Schmetersmurg, the true Trillimites will prevail and Beijing will lead the way.

  24. Volver a empezar. Yes. But we don’t start at the same point. As we choose which doors we’ll enter and which we’ll ignore, we come into relationship with whatever mysteries are revealed by our choice to knock. Each time we knock on a new door, we come as beings who have been changed because of what we found or became when we knocked previously. We open our eyes to see our babies wandering in dangerous forests without us, but they’re no longer babies, and they’re not really ours. We can open a door and see someone we loved and had wanted to contain, own like a piece of art, and we insist “This isn’t you!” Or perhaps they’re more glorious than we had considered, and we sigh in awe, “Is this really you?” Periodically, there are mirrors, and we see ourselves, like the evolutionary charts depicting monkey to man, finally standing upright and ready to knock on another door yet again–our eyes and minds fully prepared to accept whatever awaits us. Is there anything permanent? Our ability to love perhaps, though that may change through biological trauma–disease or infection or PTSD. God? We are told that God never changes. But of course He does change for us as we meet him at various junctures in our experience. Yes, He opens, and ideally, we open as well–ultimately much more than we had anticipated possible, like a woman giving birth.

  25. Hi Margaret, I find the metaphor of the spiral staircase really helpful. We keep coming back to the same place only, if things are going well, each time we encounter it with an enhanced perspective. The question is whether or not we ever arrive at the top, and if we do, if we get bored being there.

  26. Doug Hudson says:

    Does Gilda live, perchance, in Uqbar?

  27. Margaret, you said what Gilda was getting at so much more beautifully, (and succinctly). That was wonderfully said, powerful, and gorgeous.

  28. RE: #17

    I’m reminded of the quote from T.S Eliot: “We shall never cease from striving and the end of our striving will be to arrive where we began and to know the place for the first time”

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 8,438 other followers