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Daily Thoughts  

"I" and "Thou"
by Martin Buber

There is no "I" taken in itself, but only the "I" of the primary word, "I-Thou." If "Thou" is said, the "I" of the combination "I-Thou" is said along with it. Primary words are spoken from the being. The primary word "I-Thou" can only be spoken with the whole being. He who gives himself to it may withold nothing of himself. "I-It" can never be spoken with the whole being. The "Thou" meets me through grace--it is not found by seeking. I become through my relation to the "Thou;" as I become "I," I say "Thou."

Spirit in its human manifestation is a response of man to his "Thou." Spirit is not in the "I," but between "I" and "Thou." It is not like the blood which circulates in you, but like the air in which you breathe.

adapted from "I" and "Thou" by Martin Buber.