It vanished as soon as he returned to the customary conditions of his life
, but he knew that this feeling which he did not know how to develop existed within him.
Out of the manifold events of his life
, his deeds, his feelings, his thoughts, he might make a design, regular, elaborate, complicated, or beautiful; and though it might be no more than an illusion that he had the power of selection, though it might be no more than a fantastic legerdemain in which appearances were interwoven with moonbeams, that did not matter: it seemed, and so to him it was.
The habit to which he soon became a slave made shipwreck of his life
. He had always been unstable of purpose and weak of will, never keeping to one course long.
There only, in the carriage that had crossed over to the other side of the road, and was rapidly disappearing, there only could he find the solution of the riddle of his life
, which had weighed so agonizingly upon him of late.
The philosopher is in advance of his age even in the outward form of his life
. He is not fed, sheltered, clothed, warmed, like his contemporaries.
Every man's work, pursued steadily, tends in this way to become an end in itself, and so to bridge over the loveless chasms of his life. Silas's hand satisfied itself with throwing the shuttle, and his eye with seeing the little squares in the cloth complete themselves under his effort.
Strangely Marner's face and figure shrank and bent themselves into a constant mechanical relation to the objects of his life, so that he produced the same sort of impression as a handle or a crooked tube, which has no meaning standing apart.
He could have chosen to stay with his defeat, allowing a narrative of failures, foolishness, and sinfulness to define the rest of his life
. Wallowing with the pigs on the farm, he could have buried himself in self-pity and blame, almost priding himself in the fact that resurrection would never be his.