The Only Life We May Hope To Live Is Here


The only life we may hope to live is here. It seems likely that if we are to reach the earthly paradise at all, we will reach it only when we have ceased to strive and hurry to get there. There is no ‘there.’ We can only wait here, where we are, in the world, obedient to its processes, patient in its taking away, faithful in its returns. And as much as we may know, and all that we deserve, of earthly paradise will come to us.

— Wendell Berry from “Discipline and Hope,” in Recollected Essays, p. 206


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