Monday, April 26, 2010
Two more sketches from New Orleans...and a quotation from one of my favorite writers, Mark Helprin...
"...Nothing is random. Nor will anything ever be, whether a long string of perfectly blue days that begin and end in golden dimness, the most seemingly chaotic political acts, the rise of a great city, the crystalline structure of a gem that has never seen the light, the distribution of fortune, what time the milkman gets up, the position of the electron, or the occurrence of one astonishingly frigid winter after another...... and yet there is wonderful anarchy in that the milkman chooses when to rise, the rat picks the tunnel into which he will dive when the subway comes rushing down the track from Borough Hall, and the snowflake will fall as it will. How can this be. If nothing is random, and everything is predetermined, how can there be free will? The answer to that is simple. Nothing is predetermined; it is determined, or was determined, or will be determined. No matter, it all happened at once, in less than an instant, and time was invented because we cannot comprehend in one glance the enormous and detailed canvas we have been given- so we track it in linear fashion, piece by piece. Time, however, can be easily overcome; not by chasing the light, but by standing back far enough to see it all at once. The universe is still and complete; everything that ever was, is; everything that ever will be, is- and so on, in all possible combinations. Though in perceiving it we imagine that it is in motion and unfinished, it is quite finished and quite astonishingly beautiful. In the end, or, rather as things really are, any event, no matter how small, is intimately and sensibly tied to all others. All rivers run to the sea; those who are apart are brought back together; the lost ones are redeemed; the dead come back to life; the perfectly blue days that have begun and ended in golden dimness continue, immobile and accessible; and when all is perceived in such a way to obviate time, justice becomes apparent not as something that will be, but as something that is..."
Nothing is Random from Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin