tethered to the stake of the moment; Nietzsche, Dostoevsky, les Amants du Pont Neuf

Bridge scene; Les Amants du Pont Neuf

Anyone who cannot forget the past entirely and set himself down on the threshold of the moment, anyone who cannot stand, without dizziness or fear, on one single point like a victory goddess, will never know what happiness is... All action requires forgetting, just as the existence of all organic things requires not only light, but darkness as well.

Nietzsche, On the Utility and Liability of History

There are seconds, they come only five or six at a time, and you suddenly feel the presence of eternal harmony, fully achieved. It is nothing earthly; not that it's heavenly, but man cannot endure it in his earthly state. One must change physically or die. The feeling is clear and indisputable. As if you suddenly sense the whole of nature and suddenly say: yes, this is true.... If it were longer than five seconds — the soul couldn't endure it and would vanish. In those five seconds I live my life through...

Dostoevsky; Demons

Observe the herd as it grazes past you: it cannot distinguish yesterday from today, leaps about, eats, sleeps, digests, leaps some more, and carries on like this from morning to night and from day to day, tethered by the short leash of its pleasures and displeasures to the stake of the moment, and thus it is neither melancholy nor bored.