disciplinary boundaries

Faust: So, still I seek the force, the reason governing life’s flow, and not just its external show.

Mephistopheles: The governing force? The reason? Some things cannot be known; they are beyond your reach even when shown.

Faust: Why should that be so?

Mephistopheles: They lie outside the boundaries that words can address; and man can only grasp those thoughts which language can express.

Faust: What? Do you mean that words are greater yet than man?

Mephistopheles: Indeed they are.

Faust: Then what of longing? Or affection, pain and grief? I can’t describe these, yet I know they are in my breast. What are they?

Mephistopheles: Without substance, as mist is.

Faust: In that case man is only air as well!

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