ItÂ’s a wonderful formula for getting to heaven the quickest and easiest way. And virtually foolproof. There is no time to backslide, no temptations to bother with, no doubts to wrestle with, no spouse to have to honor, no kids to put up with, no enemies to love, no more sorrow, no more tears. Instant eternity.
Those who have searched into human nature observe that nothing so much shows the nobleness of the soul, as that its felicity consists in action. Every man has such an active principle in him that he will find out something to employ himself upon, in whatever place or state of life he is posted.
We, Seth, Emperor of Azania, Chief of Chiefs of Sakuyu, Lord of Wanda and Tyrant of the Seas, Bachelor of the Arts of Oxford University, being in this the twenty-fourth year of our life, summoned by the wisdom of Almighty God and the unanimous voice of our people to the throne of our ancestors, do hereby proclaim. . . Seth paused in his dictation and gazed out across the harbour where in the fresh breeze of early morning the last dhow was setting sail for the open sea. Rats, he said; stinking curs. They are all running away.
Why assume so glibly that the God who presumably created the universe is still running it? It is certainly perfectly conceivable that He may have finished it and then turned it over to lesser gods to operate. In the same way many human institutions are turned over to grossly inferior men. This is true, for example, of most universities, and of all great newspapers.
I sit beside the fire and think of all that i have seen of meadow flowers and butterflies in summers that have been of yellow leaves and gossamer in autumns that there were with morning mist and silver sun and wind upon my hair. I sit beside the fire and think of how the world will be when winter comes without a spring that I shall ever see. For still there are so many things that I have never seen in every wood in every spring there is a different green. I sit beside the fire and think of people long ago and people that will see a world that i shall never know. But all the while I sit and think of times there were before I listen for returning feet and voices at the door.
I tried to save the Shire, and it has been saved, but not for me. It must often be so, Sam, when things are in danger; someone has to give them up, lose them, so that others may keep them...