|The first excerpt represents the past or something you must release, and is drawn from Sarrasine by Honore de Balzac:
boudoir which opened from the salon, and toward which he had more than
once turned his eyes. The Italian was armed with a dagger.
" 'If you come hear me,' she said, 'I shall be compelled to plunge
this blade into your heart. Go! you would despise me. I have conceived
too great a respect for your character to abandon myself to you thus.
I do not choose to destroy the sentiment with which you honor me.'
" 'Ah!' said Sarrasine, 'to stimulate a passion is a poor way to
extinguish it! Are you already so corrupt that, being old in heart,
you act like a young prostitute who inflames the emotions in which she
" 'Why, this is Friday,' she replied, alarmed by the Frenchman's
|The second excerpt represents the present or the deciding factor of the moment, and is drawn from The Life of the Spider by J. Henri Fabre:
the thread, holding it taut as we do so. Its extremity will not
leave the plane and will describe a logarithmic spiral within it.
It is, in a more complicated degree, a variant of Bernouilli's
'Eadem mutata resurgo:' the logarithmic conic curve becomes a
logarithmic plane curve.
A similar geometry is found in the other shells with elongated
cones, Turritellae, Spindle-shells, Cerithia, as well as in the
shells with flattened cones, Trochidae, Turbines. The spherical
shells, those whirled into a volute, are no exception to this rule.
All, down to the common Snail-shell, are constructed according to
logarithmic laws. The famous spiral of the geometers is the
The Life of the Spider
|The third excerpt represents the future or something you must embrace, and is drawn from Cratylus by Plato:
The dialogue hardly derives any light from Plato's other writings, and
still less from Scholiasts and Neoplatonist writers. Socrates must be
interpreted from himself, and on first reading we certainly have a
difficulty in understanding his drift, or his relation to the two other
interlocutors in the dialogue. Does he agree with Cratylus or with
Hermogenes, and is he serious in those fanciful etymologies, extending over
more than half the dialogue, which he seems so greatly to relish? Or is he
serious in part only; and can we separate his jest from his earnest?--Sunt
bona, sunt quaedum mediocria, sunt mala plura. Most of them are
ridiculously bad, and yet among them are found, as if by accident,
principles of philology which are unsurpassed in any ancient writer, and