When you are young, you enjoy a sustained illusion that sooner or later something marvelous is going to happen, that you are going to transcend your parents’ limitations… At the same time, you feel sure that in all the wilderness of possibility; in all the forest of opinion, there is a vital something that can be known — known and grasped.
That we will eventually know it, and convert the whole mystery into a coherent narrative. So that then one’s true life
— the point of everything —
will emerge from the mist into a pure light, into total comprehension.
But it isn’t like that at all. But if it isn’t, where did the idea come from, to torture and unsettle us?
– Brian Aldiss, Helliconia Summer
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