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Full text of "I And Thou"

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a star in the night, o living Finger laid on an unheeding
brow, o fainter echoing footstep !

The development of the function of experiencing
and using comes about mostly through decrease of
man's power to enter into relation.
How does this same man, who made spirit into a
means of enjoyment for himself, behave towards the
beings that live round about him ?
Taking his stand in the shelter of the primary word of
separation, which holds off the I and the It from one
another, he has divided his life with his fellow-men
into two tidily circled-off provinces, one of institutions
and the other of feelings—the province of It and the
province of I.
Institutions are " outside ", where all sorts of aims
are pursued, where a man works, negotiates, bears in-
fluence, undertakes, concurs, organises, conducts business,
officiates, preaches. They are the tolerably well-ordered
and to some extent harmonious structure, in which,
with the manifold help of men's brains and hands,
the process of affairs is fulfilled.
Feelings are " within ", where life is 'lived and man
recovers from institutions. Here the spectrum of the
emotions dances before the interested glance. Here
a man's "Hiring and hate and pleasure are indulged,
and his pain if it is not too severe. Here he is at home,
and stretches himself out in his rocking-chair.
Institutions are a complicated market-place, feelings
a boudoir rich in ever-changing interests.
The boundary line, to be sure, is constantly in danger