It’s not the combination of holy sacrament, Indian torture and sexual ecstasy that you seem to make of it.
It was an act of clenched teeth and hatred, it was the unendurable, the agony, an act of passion—the word born to mean suffering—it was the moment made of hatred, tension, pain—the moment that broke its own elements, inverted them, triumphed, swept into a denial of all suffering, into its antithesis, into ecstasy.
…face—and thought of something that had puzzled him for a long time: he had always wondered why the sensations one felt in dreams were so much more intense than anything one could experience in waking reality—why the horror was so total and the ecstasy so complete—and what was that extra quality which could never be recaptured afterward; the quality of what he felt when he walked down a path through tangled green leaves in a dream, in an air full of expectation, of causeless, utter…
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the agony and the ecstasy of intense sports competition
The sculpture is called "The Ecstasy of Saint Theresa."