A freemason, neither believer nor churchgoer that I know, told me:
"Every morning, I thank fate that I am alive, I give thanks for the new day
that is given me."
This happy disposition needs to be strengthened. We must say again and again
thank you to the companion who has chosen us, to our friends
for being just that, to our children for being born to us, even to the
switchboard operator who blesses us with a "Have a nice day!"
One of my sons is an architect; by following his studies I learned to
look around me. What marvels one discovers if only one looks up at
building fronts! One still has to look up, be it furtively.|
I am lucky enough to live in the centre of Paris. How many thousands of times have I crossed the Seine with my head buried in my overcoat collar! Until the day I realized that I was thereby distracted from a marvellous jewel of liquid light that offered itself to my gaze, provided I looked at it.
A glass of cold water becomes a miraculous gift if one pays attention to it; a slowly savoured fruit is a gift from heaven; an open patch of horizon suggests the exhilaration of freedom.
In The Last Emperor, Bertolucci shows the Chinese sovereign bowing each morning to the four cardinal points: one bow for the earth, one for the sky, one for the moon, and one for the sun.
Albert Memmi, translated by RW