Tuesday, November 15, 2016

No man is an island

At a time when all over the world there is a frightening growth in the numbers of human beings filled with hatred; in the dominance of xenophobia, racism, nationalism and other ‘isms’, at the same time that the most widespread disease is philautia, the ‘I’ cancer, John Donne’s poem – so famous that it is largely ignored – is worth repeating.

No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend's
Or of thine own were:
Any man's death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; 
It tolls for thee. 

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