To pass freely through open doors, it is necessary to respect the fact that they have solid frames. This principle, by which the old professor had always lived, is simply a requisite of the sense of reality. But if there is a sense of reality, and no one will doubt that it has its justification for existing, then there must also be something we can call a sense of possibility.
This is the start of Chapter four in Musil’s book “The Man without qualities”. Seeing the title of this mega book can make one think that “a man without qualities” must be boring and will surely miss something. But according to Musil it’s the opposite. This man (and she might as well be a woman without qualities) is a creative person. Because she has the capacity to think and to see what could happen. Or: “to attach no more importance to what is than to what is not”.
Here is the whole chapter: