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Literature that changed my life - my favorite passage in Spanish

Literature that changed my life - my favorite passage in Spanish

This is my favorite quote (with translation) from my favorite Spanish book "El Reino de Este Mundo" by Alejo Carpentier. Along with that book, there are a handful of other works that have by chance and circumstance, greatly affected my life and world view: Papillon by Henri Charrière, Satyagraha in South Africa by Gandhi, and the movies Shawshank Redemption and American Beauty.

"...el hombre nunca sabe para quién padece y espera. Padece y espera y trabaja para gentes que nunca conocerá, y que a su vez padecerán y esperarán y trabajarán para otros que tampoco serán felices, pues el hombre ansía siempre una felicidad situada más allá de la porción que le es otorgada. Pero la grandeza del hombre está precisamente en querer mejorar lo que es. En imponerse Tareas. En el Reino de los Cielos no hay grandeza que consquistar, puesto que allá todo es jerarquía establecida, incógnita despejada, existir sin término, imposibilidad de sacrificio, reposo y deleite. Por ello, agobiado de penas y de Tareas, hermoso dentro de su miseria, capaz de amar en medio de las plagas, el hombre sólo puede hallar su grandeza, su máxima medida en el Reino de este Mundo." - Alejo Carpentier

" never knows for who he suffers and waits. He suffers and waits and works for peoples he will never meet, and who at the same time will suffer and wait and work for others who will also not be happy, as man always desires a happiness that is beyond the lot that he is given. But the greatness of man is precisely in wanting to improve what he is. In assigning himself Tasks. In the Kingdom of Heaven there is no greatness to conquer, for everything there is an established hierarchy, the unknown is unobscured, existence is without end, sacrifice, rest, and delight are impossibilities. Therefore, overwhelmed with hardships and Tasks, beautiful within his misery, capable of loving in the middle of calamity, man can only find his greatness, his full self-realization, in the Kingdom of this World." - Alejo Carpentier

*translation isn't 100% literal, I wanted to capture the intent of the author and made deliberate choices

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