Martin Buber, I and Thou, trans. by Walter Kaufmann (New York: Scribner, 1970) p.57-58
I can contemplate a tree. I can accept it as a picture... I can feel it as a movement... I can assign it to a species and observe it as an instance... I can overcome its uniqueness and form so rigorously that I can recognize it only as an expression of law... I can dissolve it into a number, into a pure relation between numbers, and externalize it. Throughout all of this the tree, the tree remains my object and has its time span, its kind and condition. But it can also happen, if will and grace are joined, that as I contemplate the tree I am drawn into a relation, and the tree ceases to be an It
Time Period: Modern (Spinoza through post-WWII)