Tag Archive: alexander

How happy is the blameless vestal’s lot!
The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!
Each pray’r accepted, and each wish resign’d
(Alexander Pope)
This Alexander Pope’s quote is an interesting one. In general, it is about the chaste women devoting their lives to serving God, and cutting themselves off from real life. They are happy, because they can be ignorant to the burdens, and negativity in real life. The vestals, and the world don’t think about each other. The ‘eternal sunshine’ in line 3 refers to a mind that does not dwell on tribulations from the past and dissociates itself from anything from reality, thus being able to experience the true bliss, the true happiness. And therefore, they are able to accept every prayer, and they are able to demit themselves from their unrealistic wishes.
I like this poem, because it can serve as a comfort to individuals who are suffering from emotional problems. Well, is detaching from reality the best way of escapism? It may be a short-term remedy, but in the long run, you still need to face the problem, yourself. Running away from the problem never helps, because the ‘eternal sunshine’ in the poem is unrealistic. Everyone has problems that he/ she has to deal with. That differentiates our life stories, as we are all different, and we have different chapters in our lives. A successful life belongs to the ones who can overcome difficulties, and enjoy life while surrounded by obstacles, any time, anywhere.

Don’t Look Back in Anger

‘I don’t get many things right the first time,
in fact, I am told that a lot’ (From Ben Folds’ “The Luckiest”)

I hate saying that but that’s me, I don’t really get many things right the first time. Handling things for the first time, always gives you a sense of insecurity, as you are not sure if you are doing the right thing or not. People say getting into a relationship is hard, but well, I guess maintaining it is harder, especially for first-timers. All you could do is to be extra-careful, being everything that people hope for on their real date, being charming and suave. I bet constant panic is probably a common thing that everyone goes through in their first relationship, having fear about whether you are doing things right, whether your ‘other half’ thinks the same as you, or whether you two share the same feelings towards each other. Most people would probably look back at the wonderful times they had with the other, and deliberately look for the signs of trouble. Well, having those fear means you are sort of prepared for things. However, worrying about the future is as effective as trying to solve an equation by chewing bubble gums. The real troubles are things that never crossed your worried mind.

Love, is a terrible business practised by fools, trampling your heart and leaving you bleeding on the floor. However, it gives you a couple of incredible, and unshakable memories. Love, is not something stupid. It is about spending extra efforts, running 500 miles, even if it hurts, it is about doing something you thought you could never achieve because of your love, it is about leaving nothing in your heart unsaid. If you have already done those, even if love ends (like how majority of relationships end), you do not have to look back in anger. Well, I guess, if you leave nothing unsaid, then the likelihood is that, the relationship could last long, or would end without any party regretting.

Well, maybe nothing is supposed to last forever. Especially something very beautiful, like firework, and sunrise. The idea of it might be: if things last forever, you might never discover its beauty. No one can be with the other forever and ever, we are only ships that pass the Sheep Meadow, and we go our separate ways. Consistency is nice in a relationship is nice, but no one can give you that. You can never guarantee one day, when she wakes up, she is not gonna think differently about you. Therefore there is no point labelling sometimes. No matter how much time you spend with her (neglecting the fact that it’s sometimes harder to schedule a date than arranging a arab-isreali peace talk), you can never guarantee what the other thinks, and actually there is no point.

I guess, the formula to happiness is to live everyday as if you have desperately come back to this day to enjoy, without any worries, stress, and tensions that would stop you from noticing how sweet the world can be. As mentioned in the film ‘About Time’, we all travel through time, every day of our life, all we could is to do our best to relish, this remarkable. Therefore, there is no point looking back in anger. We look back in sadness, only because we remember only on the good memories, and ignore the bad ones. Now, try to think about something that makes you sad, do you see it slightly differently? But well, sometimes forgetting is the way to do it.

‘How Happy is a blameless vestal’s lot
The world forgetting by the world forgot
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Every prayer accepted, every wish resigned’ 

                                     By Alexander Pope

How happy is the blameless vestal’s lot!
The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!
Each pray’r accepted, and each wish resigned
‘             Alexander Pope

This piece of extract from Alexandar Pope’s ‘Eliosa to Abelard’ is probably not strange of most people, especially for those who have watched the movie ‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind’ (2005). The poem is not long, but it tells a story (or rather a narration from someone who kind of wish to erase his memory) No spoiler here, but read the poem if you wish, it is not a long one, but quite a touching one.

Erasing memories seems to be a very bad idea, especially if your life is full of joy. Is that painful? It could be. However, probably the more you remember, the more compicated life you may have. and the more negative thoughts you may have as well.

What is it like, to live with a ‘spotless mind’? I am not sure. All I can think of, is that you can never know whether they are angry, happy, or not. Nothing is probably happening in their mind. They don’t know what is gonna come, and they don’t know the past. They probably even have no clue who they were, and heven have no concept that something went wrong that they can remember nothing.Having no plan for the future, having no memory for the past, they always exist in the moment, which they accept because it is everything tangible to them.

Alexander Pope refers it as ‘ETERNAL SUNSHINE’ to have a ‘SPOTLESS MIND’. I kind of agree with it. Living in just a moment, in just a second, means nothing can be too hurtful, or maybe too striking to you, to make you feel super frustrated. The ‘Sun’ in your Mind will always be shining, rather than covered by clouds and rain. So, although a person may have no WISH for the future (which I think is pretty important), but he also has no regret for the past (which is great). The happiness in the instance, would make him a good life. In this way, a ‘Spotless Mind’ is not as bad as it may seem.

Literature comes from daily life, reading literary work can somehow make you feel less worse in bad days, as you may find something similar to your circumstance, thus not feeling left alone being the poorest person in the world. Yes indeed.