||"A man needs a little madness, or else he never dares to cut the rope
and be free..."
"Life is trouble, death is not"
"When you've made up your mind, no use lagging behind, go ahead and no relenting"
"Let your youth have free reign, it won't come again,so be bold
and no repenting."
Zorba the Greek, when questioned on his aging retorted, "....that
is a pack of lies. I
Zorba has been acclaimed as one of the truly memorable creations of
literature - a character in the great tradition of Sinbad the
Sailor, Falstaff, and Sancho Panza - and the book as a modern classic bursting with wit, fantasy, and the joy of life.
"Zorba makes the heroes of most modern fiction seem like dyspeptic ghosts. He is Everyman with a Greek accent." TIME MAGAZINE
"A stimulating excursion into the sunnier areas of the human spirit.
Fundamentally as timeless as South Wind, Candide, or The
Odyssey." THE NEW YORK TIMES
"Every page is alive with ideas and limpid images that have the precision and the concentrated, vibrant quality of poetry." THE NEW YORKER
by Kazantzakis from Zorba the Greek
I remember one morning when I discovered a cocoon in the back of a
tree just as a butterfly was making a hole in its case and preparing
to come out. I waited awhile, but it was too long appearing and I was
impatient. I bent over it and breathed on it to warm it. I warmed it as
quickly as I could and the miracle began to happen before my eyes,
faster than life. The case opened; the butterfly started slowly
crawling out, and I shall never forget my horror when I saw how its
wings were folded back and crumpled; the wretched butterfly tried
with its whole trembling body to unfold them. Bending over it, I tried
to help it with my breath, in vain.
It needed to be hatched out patiently and the unfolding of the wings
should be a gradual process in the sun. Now it was too late. My
breath had forced the butterfly to appear all crumpled, before its time.
It struggled desperately and, a few seconds later, died in the palm of
That little body is, I do believe, the greatest weight I have on my
conscience. For I realize today that it is a mortal sin to violate the
great laws of nature. We should not hurry, we should not be
impatient, but we should confidently obey the external rhythm.
"I sat on a rock to absorb this New Years's thought. Ah, if only that
little butterfly could always flutter before me to
show me the way."
Just "Zorba the Greek," and "The Last Temptation of Christ" would be
enough to make the Cretean author Kazantzakis
(1883-1957) both well known and controversial. But he has written other books that deserve some publicity.
It might be useful if I 'decloaked' a bit here: I am a Lutheran Pastor, so the morals of a book and the presentation of Christianity is of concern to me both personally and professionally. Frankly, I found "Last Temptation" unconvincing: I wasn't offended, I just didn't find the sudden conversion of Jesus to be realistic, or the other characters to be engaging. And, by the way, there is not one word in the Bible that says Mary Magdelen was a prostitute.
Goback to my