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Quietude and the Stream of Life

From the April 1973 issue of The Christian Science Journal


What intriguing possibilities are present for every college student in Goethe's words to a youthful poet, A talent is formed in quietude, A character built in the stream of life. Torquato Tasso, Act I, Scene 2; One may long to realize this double promise, but where is there uninterrupted quiet to explore his inmost powers and resources? Or, plunging into the stream of life, how can he avoid total submergence? Sensing the dilemma, a student will often settle for only one or the other of Goethe's lines as achievable in experience: he may assiduously cultivate his talents and become a lone, ivory-tower specialist, or he may label himself the all-round practical type, lacking in depth and sensitivity.