Monday, 10 December 2012

Of greatness and inspiration

Any greatness inspires us. A great sculpture, a great piece of music, a great effort, a great act of nature - anything great - anything indeed serves as an inspiration. When I go to a vast field, or see the vast sky above either in its azure blueness or in another of its million shades, I find inspiration. I see the many possibilities - of what one can do, of what we can achieve, of all the life's possibilities - everything right there for our taking. I believe I speak for a lot of people when I say this.
It is to this inspiration that Miss Rand refers when she says this. It speaks of a man who was in love with music, who didn't know what to do with life and was seeking for an inspiration. He was a young college student who was walking in the woods and this is what Ayn Rand says:
"He had always wanted to write music, and he could give no other identity to the thing he sought. If you want to know what it is, he told himself, listen to the first phrases of Tchaikovsky's First Concerto - or the last movement of Rachmaninoff's Second. Men have not found the words for it nor the deed nor the thought, but they have found the music. Let me see that in one single act of man on earth. Let me see it made real. Let me see the answer to the promise of that music. Not servants nor those served; not altars and immolations; but the final, the fulfilled, innocent of pain. Don't help me or serve me, but let me see it once, because I need it. Don't work for my happiness, my brothers - show me yours - show me that it is possible - show me your achievement - and the knowledge will give me courage for mine." (From "The Fountainhead" by Ayn Rand)

I just went through the following quote today and was struck by the truth in it and made me write all this stuff down:

People travel to wonder at the height of the mountains, at the huge waves of the seas, at the long course of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars, and yet they pass by themselves without wondering.
- St. Augustine

(I hope I'll write more on this later. The subject is vast and I have written only a few lines...)