Two kingdoms

If I imagined two kingdoms adjoining one another, with one of which I was fairly well acquainted, and altogether unfamiliar with the other, and I was not allowed to enter the unknown realm, however much I desired to do so, I should still be able to form some conception of its nature. I could go to the limits of the kingdom with which I was acquainted and follow its boundaries, and as I did so, I should in this way describe the boundaries of this unknown country, and thus without ever having set foot in it, obtain a general conception of it. And if this was a task that engrossed my energies, and if I was indefatigable in my desire to be accurate, it would doubtless sometimes happen, that as I stood sadly at my country’s boundary and looked longingly into the unknown country, which was so near me and yet so far away, that some little revelation might be vouchsafed to me.

— Kierkegaard, Either/Or (tr. Hong)

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