There are times, they occur with increasing frequency nowadays, when I seem to know nothing, when everything I know seems to have fallen out of my mind like a shower of rain, and I am gripped for a moment in paralysed dismay, waiting for it all to come back but with no certainty that it will.
There's never been a game plan, and I suppose I've had an uneasy relationship with my ambition. Someone who had been in my year at drama school once said to me that I was terrifyingly ambitious back then. Which was not at all what I felt at the time - I felt paralysed with shyness, though that evaporated.
I believe that words can help us move or keep us paralysed, and that our choices of language and verbal tone have something - a great deal - to do with how we live our lives and whom we end up speaking with and hearing; and that we can deflect words by trivialization, of course, but also by ritualized respect, or we can let them enter our souls and mix with the juices of our minds.
The state sometimes makes mistakes. When one of these mistakes occurs, a decline in collective enthusiasm is reflected by a resulting quantitative decrease of the contribution of each individual, each of the elements forming the whole of the masses. Work is so paralysed that insignificant quantities are produced. It is time to make a correction.
Insofar as the theorist wins, therefore, by constructing an increasingly closed and terrifying machine, to that very degree he loses, since the critical capacity of his work is thereby paralysed, and the impulses of negation and revolt, not to speak of those of social transformation, are increasingly perceived as vain and trivial in the face of the model itself.
We are standing face to face with the barbarians. The enemy is no longer outside but inside the City, and the ruling ideology, paralysed, is incapable of spotting him. It stammers, overcome by its own moral disarmament, and is giving up: this is the time to seize the reins. Present society is an accomplice to the evil that is devouring it.
Real terror is a crippling experience. You sweat so much that your skin goes all wrinkly like when you've been in the bath all afternoon. And then the scent of your sweat changes. It smells like cat pee, no doubt from the adrenalin. However hard you wash, it won't come off. It smothers you, as your muscles become frozen with acid and your mind paralysed by despair.
The coming peril is the intellectual, educational, psychological and artistic overproduction, which, equally with economic overproduction, threatens the well-being of contemporary civilisation. People are inundated, blinded, deafened, and mentally paralysed by a flood of vulgar and tasteless externals, leaving them no time for leisure, thought, or creation from within themselves.
Gilbert K. Chesterton
It struck him that in moments of crisis one is never fighting against an external enemy, but always against one's own body... On the battlefield, in the torture chamber, on a sinking ship, the issues that you are fighting for are always forgotten, because the body swells up until it fills the universe, and even when you are not paralysed by fright or screaming with pain, life is a moment-to-moment struggle against hunger or cold or sleeplessness, against a sour stomach or an aching tooth.
We are the hollow men We are the stuffed men Leaning together Headpiece filled with straw. Alas! Our dried voices, when We whisper together Are quiet and meaningless As wind in dry grass Or rats' feet over broken glass In our dry cellar Shape without form, shade without colour, Paralysed force, gesture without motion; - The Hollow Men
A small girl became increasingly paralysed by her parents' frequently violent rows. Sometimes she would spend hours standing completely still in the toilet, simply because that was where she happened to be when the fight began. Finally, in moments of calm, she would take bottles of milk from the fridge or doorstep and leave them in places where she may later become trapped. Her parents were unable to understand why they found bottles of sour milk in every room in the house.
Don't hold back because you're afraid of hurting someone else. If your best friend wants to be a cheerleader and you make the team but she doesn't, don't feel guilty. If you end up earning more than your sister, it's not a betrayal. Your success might be an inspiration for someone else, while limiting yourself to avoid upsetting the balance doesn't help anyone. Equally, rather than being paralysed by jealousy when someone else is coming out on top, use it to spur you on to greater things. Some of our best achievements will be triggered by envy at seeing someone else fulfilling our secret ambitions.
The problems of this world are so gigantic that some are paralysed by their own uncertainty. Courage and wisdom are needed to reach out above this sense of helplessness. Desire for vengeance against deeds of hatred offers no solution. An eye for an eye makes the world blind. If we wish to choose the other path, we will have to search for ways to break the spiral of animosity. To fight evil one must also recognize one's own responsibility. The values for which we stand must be expressed in the way we think of, and how we deal with, our fellow humans.
Beatrix of the Netherlands
Luke captured my gaze again and said, "If beauty were time, you'd be eternity." My heart stopped. I was paralysed to look away from him (...) Thankfully, another senior boy who apparently wasn't dating anyone spoke. And when the words came out of his mouth, I understood why he was girlfriendless. "If you were a booger, I'd pick you first." A lot of yuck and that's gross penetrated the table's atmosphere. A rain of crumpled napkins showered over the boy. Of course, all the guys laughed at him, including Luke, who was finally looking away from me. I was never so grateful for such a tactless comment.
the burrowing wasp, which in order to provide a supply of fresh meat for her offspring after her own decease, calls in the science of anatomy to amplify the resources of her instinctive cruelty, and, having made a collection of weevils and spiders, proceeds with marvellous knowledge and skill to pierce the nerve-centre on which their power of locomotion (but none of their other vital functions) depends, so that the paralysed insect, beside which her egg is laid, will furnish the larva, when it is hatched, with a tamed and inoffensive quarry, incapable either of flight or of resistance, but perfectly fresh for the larder...
I have always known that there were spellbinding evil parts for women. For one thing, I was taken at an early age to see Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Never mind the Protestant work ethic of the dwarfs. Never mind the tedious housework-is-virtuous motif. Never mind the fact that Snow White is a vampire -- anyone who lies in a glass coffin without decaying and then comes to life again must be. The truth is that I was paralysed by the scene in which the evil queen drinks the magic potion and changes her shape. What power, what untold possibilities!
Back therefore we find ourselves returning. Back to the wisdom of the plough; back to the wisdom of those who follow the sea. It is all a matter of the wheel coming full-circle. For the sophisticated system of mental reactions to which we finally give our adherence is only the intellectualised reproduction of what more happily constituted natures, without knowing what they possess, possess. Thus between true philosophers and the true simple people there is a magnetic understanding; whereas, the clever ones whose bastard culture only divorces them from the wisdom of the earth remain pilloried and paralysed on the prongs of their own conceit".
John Cowper Powys
I thought I saw how stories of this kind could steal past a certain inhibition which had paralysed much of my own religion in childhood. Why did one find it so hard to feel as one was told one ought to feel about God or the sufferings of Christ? I thought the chief reason was that one was told one ought to. An obligation to feel can freeze feelings. And reverence itself did harm. The whole subject was associated with lowered voices; almost as if it were something medical. But supposing that by casting all these things into an imaginary world, stripping them of their stained-glass and Sunday School associations, one could make them for the first time appear in their real potency? Could one not thus steal past those watchful dragons? I thought one could.
LETS TAKE IT BACK TO THE MEGADRIVE SUPER NINTENDO GOT TERRORISED I REMEMBER WHEN YOUR WRIST GOT PARALYSED I WAS PLAYING HEAT JUMPED OFF OF THE SLIDE I GOT IT ALL MEMORISED COS THESE ARE MY MEMORIES AND IM TELLIN IT GUYS TELL 'EM GRIND IMA TELL 'EM WHY WE SHOULD TELL EM BOUT NOW IN THE PRESENT TIME THESE ARE BETTER TIMES NOW EVERY DAY YOUT MANS GETTING PRESENT TIME COMMITED SEVERAL CRIMES STOOD UP IN THE DOCK GAVE THE JUDGE A DEVIL SMILE TWO TYPES OF NIGGAS YOU CAN SELL OR BUY MERKED THE RAP GAME COS WE PUSHED THE LEVELS HIGH NIGGAS BETTER START TELLING GUYS AINT NO SNITCHING ROUND HERE YOU CAN TELL AND DIE
Love at first sight is a hypnosis: I am fascinated by an image: at first shaken, electrified, stunned, "paralysed" as Menon was by Socrates, the model of loved objects, of captivating images, or again converted by an apparition, nothing distinguishing the path of enamoration from the Road to Damascus; subsequently ensnared, held fast, immobilised, nose stuck to the image (the mirror). In that moment when the other's image comes to ravish me for the first time, I am nothing more than the Jesuit Athanasius Kirchner's wonderful Hen: feet tied, the hen went to sleep with her eyes fixed on the chalk line, which was traced not far from her beak; when she was untied, she remained motionless, fascinated, "submitting to her vanquisher, " as the Jesuit says (1646); yet, to waken her from her enchantment, to break off the violence of her Image-repertoire (vehemens animalis imaginatio), it was enough to tap her on the wing; she shook herself and began pecking in the dust again.
When she woke up crying for one of her nightmares, the Kolker would stay with her, brush her hair with his hands, collect her tears in thimbles for her to drink the next morning (The only way to overcome sadness is to consume it, he said), and more than that: once her eyes closed and she fell back asleep, he was left to bear the insomnia. There was a complete transfer, like a speeding billiard ball colliding with a resting one. Should Brod feel depressed - she was always depressed - the Kolker would sit with her until he could convince her that it's OK. It is. Really. And when she would move on with her day, he would stay behind, paralysed with a grief he couldn't name and that wasn't his. Should Brod become sick, it was the Kolker that would be bedridden by week's end. Should Brod feel bored, knowing too many languages, too many facts, with too much knowledge to be happy, the Kolker would stay up all night studying her books, studying the pictures, so the next day he could try to make the kind of small talk that would please his young wife.
Jonathan Safran Foer
It is often said that Vietnam was the first television war. By the same token, Cleveland was the first war over the protection of children to be fought not in the courts, but in the media. By the summer of 1987 Cleveland had become above all, a hot media story. The Daily Mail, for example, had seven reporters, plus its northern editor, based in Middlesbrough full time. Most other news papers and television news teams followed suit. What were all the reporters looking for? Not children at risk. Not abusing adults. Aggrieved parents were the mother lode sought by these prospecting journalists. Many of these parents were only too happy to tell - and in some cases, it would appear, sell- their stories. Those stories are truly extraordinary. In many cases they bore almost no relation to the facts. Parents were allowed - encouraged to portray themselves as the innocent victims of a runaway witch-hunt and these accounts were duly fed to the public. Nowhere in any of the reporting is there any sign of counterbalancing information from child protection workers or the organisations that employed them. Throughout the summer of 1987 newspapers 'reported' what they termed a national scandal of innocent families torn apart. The claims were repeated in Parliament and then recycled as established 'facts' by the media. The result was that the courts themselves began to be paralysed by the power of this juggernaut of press reporting - 'journalism' which created and painstakingly fed a public mood which brooked no other version of the story. (p21)