“Ludwig : Come in!
Dürkheim : We have been defeated, Your Majesty. We have surrendered.
Ludwig : Are there any casualties?
Dürkheim : No. Your Majesty, the enemies' forces were stronger. Our troops were demoralised. We do not have too many casualties but to keep fighting would have led to a pointless massacre.
Ludwig : I am happy it is over, and it did not last long.
Dürkheim : Seven weeks, maestà, but they seemed like an eternity for those who were fighting.
Ludwig : Any news about my brother Otto?
Dürkheim : He went back to Munich. He was very demoralised.
Ludwig : You are very fond of my brother, am I right Dürkheim?
Dürkheim : Si maestà. I am very fond of him.
Ludwig : One day, Otto will be your King. Molto presto. Because I...
Dürkheim : His Majesty Prince Otto is deeply unhappy. He is so young but it is as if he has got to the end of his life without having lived it. His ambitions are dipped in bitterness. They have turned into sorrow and fear. He is extremely lonely. He does not sleep for more than two hours a night. He is unable to rest. He was desperately looking for hapiness in something unreachable and security in what falls outside the rules.
Ludwig : Perchè no? The world around us is unbearable and miserable. Men are only after material security, nothing else. They are ready lose their lives in order to achieve that. I want to be free! Free to look for hapiness in the unreachable! But unlike my brother, I try to act upon my thoughts. That is why I abandoned this silly war that I was not able to prevent. I am not a coward! Odio la menzogna... Io voglio vivere nella verità sempre! [I hate lies! I will forever live in the truth!]
Dürkheim : Perdonami sire. Allow a common man to express his opinion. Your majesty said that he wants to live in truth. But I think what you meant is that you want to live as a free man following your instinct and your tastes without hypocrisy or lies. Am I right? In my opinion the truth doesn't have anything to do with this search for the unreachable. When freedom is the privilege of the few it does not have anything to do with real freedom. The same freedom that belongs to every man and that the each of us has the right to hold on to. We live in a world where there are no innocents, where nobody has the right to judge anybody. I am speaking as a friend. The generosity that Your Majesty showed me when we were both younger gives me the courage to speak my mind as men do with each other. I am a soldier who was left alone on the battlefield at time of danger and bitterness. But I do not feel neither contempt nor rancour for the king who abandoned me. Instead, I feel great pity. My king thinks he has made a brave decision but he is mistaken if he thinks he can find happiness outside the rules and the duties of men. Those who love life cannot afford to search for the unreachable but have to be extremely careful. This is true even for a monarch, because the great power a monarch has is limited by the boundaries of the society of which he is part. Who could ever follow him outside those boundaries? Certainly not the weak and humble, whose only worry is to fin security both material and moral; the same security Your Majesty was talking about with such contempt. The only ones following him will be those who see freedom as a search for pleasure beyond any moral boundary. No... You surely do not want this. Being followed only by despicable servants, exploiters, traders of illusions... No, I do not believe it. Your Majesty cannot be such a breed who would take advantage of his generosity and would try to deceive him. Why would a young person, who has a whole life ahead of him, not be tempted to find a different reason to live? Even if it is difficult because it is the one of the common people who accept mediocrity. It takes a lot of courage to accept mediocrity for somebody who is pursuing sublime ideals beyond this world. I know it. But it is the only way to be saved from a terrible loneliness.”
Notes from : April 21, 2016.