It strikes me us utterly amazing that I did in fact come from nothing. If I came from it once, I see no reason why I could not come from it again; for if, as is indeed the case, I did come from it once, this nothingness is, to say the least, unexplainably frisky.
But I define myself in terms of you; I know myself only in terms of what is “other,” no matter whether I see the “other” as below me or above me in any ladder of values. If above, I enjoy the kick of self-pity; if below, I enjoy the kick of pride. I being I goes with you being you.
Some Chinese painters like to let everything go wild. But the ideal they are aiming at—and you have to be a tremendous master to achieve it—is to let everything go wild within limits, to create a situation that is orderly overall but that allows for unexpected, random surprises. And they look upon daily life in exactly the same way.
Man is a little germ that lives on an unimportant rock ball that revolves about a small star at the outskirts of an ordinary galaxy. I am absolutely amazed to discover myself on this rock ball rotating around a spherical fire. It’s a very odd situation. And the more I look at things I cannot get rid of the feeling that existence is quite weird.
Wonder is not a disease. Wonder, and its expression in poetry and the arts, are among the most important things which seem to distinguish men from other animals, and intelligent and sensitive people from morons.