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The Decay of The Angel

Where the cypress grove gave away to a grove of cryptomeria, there stood a lone nemu tree. The soft clusters of leaves in among the hard needles of the cryptomerias were like wraiths, like afternoon slumber. They made him think of Thailand. A white butterfly from the nemu led him on his way.

from Yukio Mishima “The Decay of The Angel” (Translated by Edward G. Seidensticker)

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The Decay of The Angel

I have known secret pride and pleasure in seeing the concept on the horizon gradually take shape. I have put my hand in from outside the world and created something, and I have not tasted the sensation of being brought into the world. I have not felt myself brought in like laundry brought in before a shower. No rain has fallen to give me drowning, my clarity has been confident of proper sensual rescue. For the ship has always passed. It has never stopped. The sea winds have turned everything to spotted marble, the sun has turned the heart into crystal.

from Yukio Mishima “The Decay of The Angel” (Translated by Edward G. Seidensticker)

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My Name Is Red

Oh, why was I there at the window just when Black rode my on his white steed? Why did I open the shutters intuitively at that exact moment and stare at him so long from behind the snowy branches of the pomegranate tree? I can’t tell you for sure.
from Orhan Pamuk “My Name Is Red”(Translated by Erdağ M. Göknar)

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My Name Is Red

Hush and listen to how I developed such a magnificent red tone. A master miniaturist, an expert in paints, furiously pounded the best variety of dried red beetle from the hottest climes of Hindustan into a fine powder using his mortar and pestle. He prepared five drachmas of the red powder, one drachma of soapwort and a half drachma of lotor. He boiled the soapwort in pot containing three okkas of water. Next, he mix throughly the lotor into the water. He let it boil for as long as it took to drink an excellent cup of coffee. As he enjoyed his coffee, I grew as impatient as a child about to be born.
from Orhan Pamuk “My Name Is Red”(Translated by Erdağ M. Göknar)

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My Name Is Red

A great painter does not content himself by affecting us with his masterpieces; ultimately, he succeeds in changing the landscape of our minds. Once a miniaturist’s artistry enters our souls this way, it becomes the criterion for the beauty of our world. At the end of my life, as the Master of Isfahan burned his own art, he not only witnessed the fact that his work, instead of disappearing, actually proliferated and increased; he understood that everybody now saw the world the way he had seen it. Those things which did not resemble the paintings he made in his youth were now considered ugly.
from Orhan Pamuk “My Name Is Red”(Translated by Erdağ M. Göknar)

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What Are You Doing with Your Life?

2-3-5 Renewal Lies between Thoughts
The difficulty is for the mind to be still; for the mind is always worried, it is always after something, acquiring or denying, searching and finding. The mind is never still, it is in continuous movement. The past, overshadowing the present, makes its own future. It is a movement in time, and there is hardly ever an interval between thoughts. One thought follows another without pause; the mind is ever making itself sharp and so wearing itself out. If a pencil is being sharpened all the time, soon there will be nothing left of it; similarly, the mind uses itself constantly and is exhausted. The mind is always afraid of coming to an end. But, living is ending from day to day; it is the dying to all acquisition, to memories, to experiences, to the past.
from Jiddu Krishnamurti “What Are You Doing with Your Life?” (Krishnamurti Foundation of America)

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The Temple of Dawn

It was the rainy season in Bangkok.  The air was saturated with a continuous fine drizzle, and often drops of rain would dance in a brilliant ray of sunlight.  Rifts of blue were always visible here and there; and even when the clouds clustered most thickly round the sun, the sky at their circumference was dazzlingly blue.  Before an approaching squall, it would turn ominously dark and threatening.  A foreboding shade would shroud the predominantly green, low-roofed city dotted with palms.

from Yukio Mishima “The Temple of Dawn” (Translated by E. Dale Saunders and Cecilia Segawa Seigle)

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