We all know the troubles of old age. The bones creak: the eyes get dim, one forgets names…. The spark does not ignite; adrenalin has lost its potency. But there is some thing to be said on the other side. It is pleasant to rise in the morning, look out at the snow, and remark “I’m not going to the office today.” The beauty of nature has lost none of its charm; the beauty of women none of its benediction. There is. . .a possibility of growing old gracefully, and with content in one’s heart.
I am among those who think that science has great beauty. . .a scientist in his laboratory is not only a technician but also a child placed in front of natural phenomena which impresses him like a fairy tale.
Something there is that can refresh and revivify older people: joy in the activities of the younger generation — a joy, to be sure, that is clouded by dark forebodings in these unsettled times. And yet, as always, the springtime sun brings forth new life, and we may rejoice because of this new life and contribute to its unfolding; and Mozart remains as beautiful and tender as he always was and always will be. There is, after all, something eternal that lies beyond the hand of fate and of all human delusions. And such eternals lie closer to an older person than to a younger one oscillating between fear and hope. For us, there remains the privilege of experiencing beauty and truth in their purest forms.
To those who do not know mathematics it is difficult to get across a real feeling as to the beauty, the deepest beauty of nature. . . . If you want to learn about nature, to appreciate nature, it is necessary to understand the language that she speaks in.
The ideals which have always shone before me and filled me with the joy of living are goodness, beauty, and truth. To make a goal of comfort or happiness has never appealed to me; a system of ethics built on this basis would be sufficient only for a herd of cattle.
What I didn’t realize, back when I was this 25-year-old pinup for geeks, was that I had signed an invisible contract to stay looking the exact same way for the next 30 to 40 years. Well, clearly I’ve broken that contract.
This is the most beautiful place on earth. There are many such places. Every man, every woman, carries in heart and mind the image of the ideal place, the right place, the one true home, known or unknown, actual or visionary.
A houseboat in Kashmir, a view down Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, a gray gothic farmhouse two stories high at the end of a red dog road in the Allegheny Mountains, a cabin on the shore of a blue lake in spruce and fir country, a greasy alley near the Hoboken waterfront, or even, possibly, for those of a less demanding sensibility, the world to be seen from a comfortable apartment high in the tender, velvety smog of Manhattan, Chicago, Paris, Tokyo, Rio, or Rome — there’s no limit to the human capacity for the homing sentiment.
Beauty is the true prerogative of women, and so peculiarly their own, that our sex, though naturally requiring another sort of feature, is never in its luster but when puerile and beardless, confused and mixed with theirs.