“To Foresee a Circumstantial Detail Is to Prevent Its Happening”

October 28, 2018

Then he reflected that reality does not usually coincide with our anticipation of it; with a logic of his own he inferred that to foresee a circumstantial detail is to prevent its happening. Trusting in this weak magic, he invented, so that they would not happen, the most gruesome details. Finally, as was natural, he came to fear that they were prophetic.

I think of this passage almost every time I speculate about the future. (From Borges, “The Secret Miracle.”)