Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong, have governed my life:thelonging for love, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pityforthe suffering of mankind. These passions, like GREat winds,haveblown me hither and thither, in a wayward course, over a deepoceanof anguish, reaching to the very verge of despair.
I have sought love, first, because it brings ecstasy –ecstasysoGREat that I would often have sacrificed all the rest of life forafew hours of this joy. I have sought it, next, because itrelievesloneliness--that terrible loneliness in which oneshiveringconsciousness looks over the rim of the world into thecoldunfathomable lifeless abyss. I have sought it, finally, becauseinthe union of love I have seen, in a mystic miniature,theprefiguring vision of the heaven that saints and poetshaveimagined. This is what I sought, and though it might seem toogoodfor human life, this is what- at last- I have found.
With equal passion I have sought knowledge. I have wishedtounderstand the hearts of men. I have tried to apprehendthePythagorean power by which number holds sway above the flu.Alittle of this, but not much, I have achieved.
love and knowledge, so far as they were possible, ledupwardtoward the heavens. But always pity brought me back toearth.Echoes of cries of pain reverberate in my heart. Childreninfamine, victims tortured by oppressors, helpless old people ahatedburden to their sons, and the whole world of loneliness,poverty,and pain make a mockery of what human life should be. Ilong toalleviate the evil, but I cannot, and I too suffer.
This has been my life. I have found it worth living, andwouldgladly live it again if the chance were offered me.