Wish I’d said that — December 3, 2017

“All the will-worshippers, from Nietzsche to Mr. Davidson, are really quite empty of volition. They cannot will, they can hardly wish…. they always talk of will as something that expands and breaks out. But it is quite the opposite. Every act of will is an act of self-limitation…. In that sense every act is an act of self-sacrifice. When you choose anything, you reject everything else. That objection, which men of this school used to make to the act of marriage, is really an objection to every act…. Just as when you marry one woman you give up all the others, so when you take one course of action you give up all the other courses. If you become King of England, you give up the post of Beadle in Brompton. If you go to Rome, you sacrifice a rich suggestive life in Wimbledon. It is the existence of this negative or limiting side of will that makes most of the talk of the anarchic will-worshippers little better than nonsense. For instance, Mr. John Davidson tells us to have nothing to do with ‘Thou shalt not’; but it is surely obvious that ‘Thou shalt not’ is only one of the necessary corollaries of ‘I will.’”

G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

https://thejohnrobson.com/blog/2017/12/3/wish-id-said-that-december-3-2017