The Beginning of the End of Answerism, Part II

Rainer Maria Rilke

I wrote about the dangers and pitfalls of what I called “Answerism” way back in the 1990s, but only just came across this most articulate poetic expression of what I had clumsily tried to say in prose. It dovetails very nicely with the previous post quoting Dr. Olga Kharitidi.


Be patient toward all that is unsolved
in your heart
and to try to love the questions
like locked rooms and like books that
are written
in a very foreign tongue.
Do not now seek the answers,
which cannot be given you
because you would not be able to live
And the point is, to live everything.
Live the questions now.
Perhaps you will then gradually,
without noticing it,
live along some distant day
into the answer.
– Rainer Maria Rilke







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