On [:] The Spirit of Place | Lawrence Durrell, 1969

 Spirit of Place: Letters and Essays on Travel, 1969                Lawrence Durrell

“My books are always about living in places, not just rushing through them…. the important determinant of any culture is after all — the spirit of place.”

“It is a pity indeed to travel and not get this essential sense of landscape values. You do not need a sixth sense for it. It is there if you just close your eyes and breathe softly through your nose; you will hear the whispered message, for all landscapes ask the same question in the same whisper. ‘I am watching you — are you watching yourself in me?’ Most travelers hurry too much…the great thing is to try and travel with the eyes of the spirit wide open, and not to much factual information. To tune in, without reverence, idly — but with real inward attention. It is to be had for the feeling…you can extract the essence of a place once you know how. If you just get as still as a needle, you’ll be there.”

Lawrence Durrell, Spirit of Place: Letters and Essays on Travel, Mediterranean Writings, 1969 


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