Louis stood there, confused. He knew the standard Bushman bow-hunting drill: drop to your belly,creep into arrow range, let fly. So what the hell was this all about? He’d heard a little aboutpersistence hunts, but he ranked them somewhere between an accident and a lie: either the animalhad actually broken its neck while fleeing, or the story was out-and-out baloney. No way theseguys were going to catch one of those kudus on foot. No way. But the more he said “No way,” thefarther away the Bushmen got, so Louis quit thinking and started running.
I am thus one of the very few examples, in this country, of one who has, not thrown off religious belief, but never had it: I grew up in a negative state with regard to it. I looked upon the modern exactly as I did upon the ancient religion, as something which in no way concerned me. It did not seem to me more strange that English people should believe what I did not, than that the men I read of in Herodotus should have done so. History had made the variety of opinions among mankind a fact familiar to me, and this was but a prolongation of that fact. This point in my early education had, however, incidentally One bad consequence deserving notice. In giving me an opinion contrary to that of the world, my father thought it necessary to give it as one which could not prudently be avowed to the world. This lesson of keeping my thoughts to myself, at that early age, was attended with some moral disadvantages; though my limited intercourse with strangers, especially such as were likely to speak to me on religion, prevented me from being placed in the alternative of avowal or hypocrisy. I remember two occasions in my boyhood, on which I felt myself in this alternative, and in both cases I avowed my disbelief and defended it. My opponents were boys, considerably older than myself: one of them I certainly staggered at the time, but the subject was never renewed between us: the other who was surprised, and somewhat shocked, did his best to convince me for some time, without effect.
Under the sea-grape bush, a hundred and twenty miles away from the scene of the dream, James Bond's had came up with a jerk. He looked quickly, guiltily, at his watch. Three-thirty. He went off to his room and had a cold shower, verified that his cedar wedges would do what they were meant to do, and strolled down the corridor to the lobby.
He pulled on a shirt and trousers and with a set cold face he walked down and shut himself in the telephone booth.
'We are not likely to encounter soon again; - a source of satisfaction to us both, no doubt, for such meetings as this can never be agreeable. I do not expect that you, who always rebelled against my just authority, exerted for your benefit and reformation, should owe me any good-will now. There is an antipathy between us -'
The Last Chronicle of Barset, 1867 3000 0 0
“Servetur ad imum
An hour earlier in its hole among the roots of the great thorn bush the scorpion had been alerted by two sets of vibrations. First there had been the tiny scraping of the beetle's movements, and these belonged to the vibrations which the scorpion immediately recognized and diagnosed. Then there had been a series of incomprehensible thuds round the bush followed by a final heavy quake which had caved in part of the scorpion's hole. These were followed by a soft rhythmic trembling of the ground which was so regular that it soon became a background vibration of no urgency. After a pause the tiny scraping of the beetle had continued, and it was greed for the beetle that, after a day of sheltering from its deadliest enemy, the sun, finally got the upper hand against the scorpion's memory of the other noises and impelled it out of its lair into the filtering moonlight.
Once more it seemed to me possible that from this utter debasement man might now once more take the first step on the long journey towards lucidity. The whole lethal social order which had hitherto frustrated it had now vanished. Reduced once more to the primitive family, surely men would rediscover their essential humanity. But this could not be. The dead hand of the past still gripped even their most intimate relationships. Debased intelligence, debased self-consciousness, debased sensibility towards others made it impossible for the new sub-men to realize the folly and cruelty that they were constantly perpetrating. No individual was ever treated with respect even for such rudiments of personality as he might possess. Every man and woman was merely the node of a number of formal social relations. Everyone was either a chieftain or a slave or a free hunter, either a husband or bachelor, a wife or a virgin, and so on. And for each relationship there was an intricate pattern of conventional conduct, which must never be infringed. These patterns were in the main not expressions of existing circumstances but confused survivals of a past culture, in many cases cruelly frustrating to the individual. This state of affairs was damaging to everyone, not only because of the discrepancy between his actual circumstances and the behaviour imposed by convention, but also because in everyone there still lurked a tortured and bewildered germ of that spirit which in the past had flowered as Jesus, Socrates, Gautama, and the hosts of the wise and the good.