--Paul Claudel, The Sword and the Mirror
December 13, 2010
When in my village chuch I hear the Credo being said, one article after the other, by the rasping voice of the cantor, to which the sincere shrill voices of little girls respond, I quiver with an interior excitement: it seems to me that I am witnessing the creation of the world. I know how much they have cost -- each of its expressions, each of those printed statements of eternal truth. I know what convulsions, what wrenchings of heaven and earth, what torrents of blood, what efforts, what parturition of the intelligence and what effusions of grace were required for their emergence. I see these great dogmatic continents, one after the other, rise up and take shape before my eyes, and I see humanity in labor, finally scucceeding in tearing from its heart the definitive expression. It is like a cathedral that is simultaneously immobile and moving with all its pillars from the porch to the choir.