Jitterbug Perfume – Tom Robbins

“If desire causes suffering, it may be because we do not desire wisely, or that we are inexpert at obtaining what we desire. Instead of hiding our heads in a prayer cloth and building walls against temptation, why not get better at fulfilling desire? Salvation is for the feeble, that’s what I think. I don’t want salvation, I want life, all of life, the miserable as well as the superb. If the gods would tax ecstasy, then I shall pay; however, I shall protest their taxes at each opportunity, and if Woden or Shiva or Buddha or that Christian fellow–what’s his name? –cannot respect that, then I’ll accept their wrath. At least I will have tasted the banquet that they have spread before me on this rich, round planet, rather than recoiling from it like a toothless bunny. I cannot believe that the most delicious things were placed here merely to test us, to tempt us, to make it more difficult for us to capture the grand prize: the safety of the void. To fashion of life such a petty game is unworthy of both men and gods.”

“The lamas declare that they have no fear of death, yet is it anything less than fear that causes them to die before they die? In order to tame death, they refuse to completely enjoy life. In rejecting complete enjoyment, they are half-dead in advance–and that with no guarantee that their sacrifice will actually benefit them when all is done. They are good fellows, and I must respect their choice, but fullness, completion, not empty perfection, is this fool’s goal.”