From the drawer of my bedside table I took her journal and opening it at random, under a date last January, I read: ‘O God, if I could really hate you, what would that mean?’ And I thought, hating Sarah is only loving Sarah and hating myself is only loving myself. I’m not worth hating – Maurice Bendrix, author of The Ambitious Host, The Crowned Image, The Grave on the Water-Front, Bendrix the scribbler. Nothing – not even Sarah – is worth our hatred if You exist, except You. And, I thought, sometimes I’ve hated Maurice, but would I have hated him if I hadn’t loved him too? O God, if I could really hate you…
I remembered how Sarah had prayed to the God she didn’t believe in, and now I spoke to the Sarah I didn’t believe in. I said: You sacrificed both of us once to bring me back to life, but what sort of a life is this without you? It’s all very well for you to love God. You are dead. You have him. But I’m sick with life, I’m rotten with health. If I begin to love God, I can’t just die. I’ve got to do something about it. I had to touch you with my hands, I had to taste you with my tongue: one can’t love and do nothing. It’s no use your telling me not to worry as you did once in a dream. If I ever loved like that, it would be the end of everything. Loving you I had no appetite for food, I felt no lust for any other woman, but loving him there’d be no pleasure in anything at all with him away. I’d even lose my work, I’d cease to be Bendrix. Sarah, I’m afraid.
–Graham Greene, The End of the Affair

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