The fist number of L. refer to the standard CtP edition published in 1987. The following number shows correspondence between letters in the new 2010 edition. Note that on this website CtP is available only 1987 edition with minor additions.

[L. 23 | 30] 22 January 1963

The present situation is only tolerable provided I can look forward to, at least, a very considerable improvement in the fairly near future. (Beside the fact that I cannot be doing myself very much good going on in this way, I am cut off from both the pleasures of the senses and the pleasures of renunciation—though, to be sure, I still have the joys of amoebiasis—; and it is distasteful for me to think of even a week more of this, and a year or over is out of the question.) But, in fact, the stimulation or sensitivity seems to be continuing unabated, and my hopes of an early improvement—and even of any improvement at all—are not very great. I feel it is better to let you know my view of the matter while my decision is still suspended.

As you know, the seat of the emotions is the bowels (not the heart, as is sometimes romantically supposed): all strong emotion can be felt as a physical affection of the bowels even after the emotion itself has subsided. (I have found that anger is constipating, lust sometimes loosening, and apprehension a diuretic; and strong fear, I believe, is a purgative.)