Soren Kierkegaard said, "When the age loses the tragic, it gains despair."
This sounds profoundly right.
The elements of life that make tragedy possible are the same as the ones that fight off despair. For tragedy to be real there has to be something hugely precious, and there has to be the capacity to feel a great emotion. When these are both present, tragedy can happen.
Despair is the horrible blankness that settles over us when nothing is seen as precious anymore and there is no capacity to feel it anyway.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
The Strange Pair of Joy and Tragedy