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Chosen Quotes from “The Structure of Delight”

Chosen Quotes from “The Structure of Delight”

A healing woman whose opinion I respect recommended I read “The Structure of Delight” by Nelson Zink.

As I’m reading the book, I’ll share here in this post short quotes that resonate with me. There will be no spoilers here, I promise.

“As the old man watched Jay searching for that one question… he remembered himself as he struggled for that same question, how important and vital it seemed at the time… Looking back on it now the old man knew the question itself was unimportant. Before the question, his life had been one of endless hesitation… Fine silken threads of hesitation that seemed secure and comforting. He had wrapped those threads around and around himself to form a shield… against the uncertainties of life… The question of what was important… became his knife. Became the sharp edge of intent that allowed him to cut through his web of indecision, to clear the way and finally mark a bearing for him to pursue. When anxiety ceased to be his currency, the Fear Wolves became loyal guard dogs.”

* * * *

“The notions of freedom and security seem to oppose each other. Security originates from the small, particular and definite. Freedom, on the other hand, is generated by the large, general and unlimited… Boundaries may be fences, laws or beliefs… Mental constraints, the strongest of them all, separate the acceptable from the unacceptable… An ability to cut across boundaries results in freedom, while the ability to keeps one’s boundaries results in security… The size of one’s personal periphery depends on the strength of its center, so this center must be firm before the mind can begin to expand. To expand is to risk and to shrink is to guarantee. Living without boundaries at all is to align one’s fate with that of the cosmos. Security is created by marking and maintaining boundaries and freedom by expanding and erasing them. A boundary pencil has two ends and they both need to be sharp.”

* * * *

“Belief is the formalization of meaning, belief is meaning fossilized. It become the rock on which z personal fortress can be built. However, a shelter constructed out of ever-shifting understanding becomes a magic carpet, leaving the earthbound behind.”

* * * *

“People have a terrible desire to be right. Many people will sacrifice their happiness and that of those around them. They’ll sacrifice their lives and everything dear to them to be right. Being wrong seems to create an unbearable tension. Being wrong hints of losing one’s bearings, losing one’s mind and going mad, or worse. It’s a natural fear, this fear of being wrong… often greater than the fear of death… What if you were wrong about yourself in major ways that would benefit you? … Sometimes great problems can be solved easily by being wrong. Often it’s a simple choice – would you rather be right or happy?”

* * * *

“We only fear what’s in the future and what’s in the future can only be pictured in our head, can only be anticipated. There is nothing to fear in this world… What is known ain’t feared, folks can only fear the unknown, the imagined, the pictured. Our fears are of our own making.”

* * * *

“There came a point when the road behind me vanished and while I searched for it the road ahead of me vanished. And I was alone. From there, a step in any direction was a step into the unknown.”

* * * *

If you wish to purchase the book, you can do it via Amazon by clicking on this link.


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