T.S. Eliot On Blaise Pascal

From T.S. Eliot’s introduction to Pascal’s Pensees.

“[I}t is a commonplace that some forms of illness are extremely favorable, not only to religious illumination, but to artistic and litarary composition. A piece of writing meditated, apparently without progress, for months or years, may suddenly take shape and word; and in this state long passages may be produced which require little or no retouch. I have no good word to say for the cultivation of automatic writing as the model of literary composition; I doubt whether these moments can be cultivated by the writer; but he to whom this happens assuredly has the sensation of being rather the vehicle.”

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