Every Single One of Us
What are the boundaries among us? How are we different? Our differences occur with magnitudes that sometimes stagger us. Sometime we want to downplay the contrasts we find even among friends. Here is another excerpt from Gilead that I have been thinking about recently:
"In every important way we are such secrets from each other, and I do believe that there is a separate language in each of us, also a separate aesthetics and a separate jurisprudence. Every single one of us is a little civilization built on the ruins of any number of preceding civilizations, but with our own variant notions of what is beautiful and acceptable--which, I hasten to add, we generally do not satisfy and by which we struggle to live.
We take fortuitous resemblances among us to be actual likeness because those around us have also fallen heir to the same customs, trade in the same coin, acknowledge, more or less, the same notions of decency and sanity. But all that really just allows us to coexist with the inviolable, untraversable, and utterly vast spaces between us."
Picador Press 2004