It Is Not From Ourselves

Too much that we do is done at the expense of something else, or somebody else. There is some intransigent destructiveness in us. My days, though I think I know better, are filled with a thousand irritations, worries, regrets for what has happened and fears for what may, trivial duties, meaningless torments—as destructive of my life as if I wanted to be dead. Take today for what it is, I counsel myself. Let it be enough.

And I dare not, for fear that if I do, yesterday will infect tomorrow. We are in the habit of contention—against the world, against each other, against ourselves.

It is not from ourselves that we will learn to be better than we are.

Wendell Berry, from A Native Hill, p.110

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