Page:Path of Vision; pocket essays of East and West.djvu/30

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horrors; and it is responsible, even in real art, for the spiritual bankruptcy of the Western world.

We are told that people who disarm us with their candor, who discount our suspicion with a startling confession, are not capable of deceiving. But the eye very often belies the tongue. A delicious candor, a surface sincerity goes little into the soul of things—the hidden springs of reality. When a woman mundane, for instance, tells you that her hair is a wig, her complexion, paste and cream and rouge and art, might not this show of bankrupt pulchritude be designed to avert your eye from the more pathetic bankruptcy within? Might it not be what the military critics call a diversion?

To be sure, we would not allow the world, if we can help it, to peep into our soul, much less to enter it. Our No-Man's-Land is hedged about with a wire entanglement of insincerities. And often we take refuge in a temperament, a pose, or a mystic mood. Like certain animals, we take on