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On Getting Away From Yourself
by [?]

I always feel so sorry for the blind, because it seems to me they can never get away from themselves by wandering in pastures new. It is trite to say that the glory of the golden sunsets, the glory of the mountains and the valleys, the coming of spring, the radiance of summer–all these things are denied them. They are. But their great deprivation is that none of these things can help them to get away from themselves, from the torments of their own souls, the haunting dreadfulness of their own secret worries. We, the more fortunate, not only can fill our souls with beauty by the contemplation of beautiful things, but, when the tale of our inner-life possesses the torments of Hell, we can turn to them in our despair because we know that their glory will ease our pain, will help us to forget awhile, will give us renewed courage to go on fighting until the end. But where all is blackness, those inner-torments must assume gigantic proportions. Nothing can take them away–except time and the weariness of a soul too utterly weary to care any longer. But time works so slowly, and the utter weariness of the soul is often so prolonged before, as it were, the spirit snaps and the blessed numbness of indifference settles down upon our hearts. People who can see have the whole of the wonder of Nature working for them in their woe. It is hard to feel utterly crushed and broken before a wide expanse of mountain, moorland, or sea. Something in their strength and vastness seems to bring renewed vigour to our heart and soul. It is as if God spoke words of encouragement to you through the wonder which is His world. But blind–one can have none of these consolations. All is darkness–darkness which seems to thrust you back once more towards the terror of your own heart-break. Sometimes I wonder that the blind do not go mad. To them there is only music and love to bring renewed courage to a heart weary of its own conflict. To get away from yourself–and not to be able to do it–oh, that must be Hell indeed! Verily sometimes the human need of pity is positively terrifying.