Monday, December 29, 2008

Art of writing

Art does not consist in underlining what already is, but to transform it, to infuse an idea into a working matter. For example, writing has three elements: what is in our mind, the art of writing, and words - the working matter with which one cooperates, but which in any case keeps its secret, until the very end; one can only try to extract to some degree the secret of a word.

With music, it's the same thing: there is what is in our mind, the art of writing, and finally the notes and sounds. It is the same for any art! So someone who does not write well, is often someone who isn't doing well or who has nothing to say. The most beautiful pages I have come to read were written by people without an epistolary experience, but who have a sensibility, an intelligence and a profound internal life. So even their “mistakes” are pearls.Then you have people who know how to write but who have nothing to say... And there are quite a few!

Further, one must distinguish those who know how to write but who seem to be disliked and resisted by words, who don't have much of a style... from those who, despite their real lack of inspiration, nevertheless manage to stroke words in the sense of the comma... without ever saying anything interesting (ie profound, interior, animated).

Finally, you have those who have a real interiority, combined with an experience of writing: they have a style, words flirt indefinitely with them. These are few and far between in my opinion. It is very difficult to tame words, for they never lie, they are what we make of them, and at the same time you cannot do what you want with them... that is the whole difficulty! A word can say what you think, but you must think, and sometimes it can better express than you what you think, but to think it or to hope it makes the right word elude you instantly...

I assure you, writing words is something nuts, one must be rather audacious! This matter is not so simple ultimately. One can, for example, seek to convey an emotion, but which emotion is that? For that is the question!! If it is an emotion of intelligence, you do not go about it in quite the same fashion as an emotion of the senses, even interior and poetic... you must actually proscribe flattering external and internal senses if you seek an emotion of intelligence, else you risk submerging what you were seeking to communicate...

I see that for a text to be finished, a real text, the author must feel objectively that it is no longer his text, and must even be able to be measured by what he has written, else it is not a good text, independently of the content. I do believe it is the same for any artistic endeavor.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Painting by Albert Edelfelt (1854-1905)

The fact that truth belongs to no one, whereas a good is always personal, is the drama of human life. I
n essence, all literature and novels revolve around this, because the cause of jealousy is there: the fear of losing ones' good. Whereas with truth that isn't the case, we don't have the same drama, truth belongs to no one, therefore no one can take it from us... and that's probably why we are not so much on a quest for truth, given that we cannot possess it. Which, for those with a religious faith, begets the following question: is "God" truth or is "God" my good? I ask this because if "God" were only truth, they wouldn't be quarrelling, as sometimes happens, as if they wanted to possess him!


Skin is what enables contact with the outside world, in other words with another being. Only those who aren't burnt to the umpteenth degree, or aren't hypersensitive, feel well under their skin, it's easy to understand, and can reach out and touch the others. Those who don't have any skin or only little bits and pieces of skin, are blockheads who stay in their corner and become even more blockheadish, by dint of being blockheadish.

Therefore, look how silly they can be sometimes, when they say "oh him, he feels well in his skin!" What does it mean? If you ask most anyone will retort "Are you silly or what? That means he feels good inside of himself!"... Well no, THEY are the blockheads! Actually, that means that he feels the others well, and that's a whole other ball game. The blockheads, for them, the skin is made to get in touch with themselves. How blockheadish can one get! And thus the numskulls who "find themselves", by getting in touch with themselves, look at themselves, contrary to those who find or look at the others.

I wonder if to feel good in ones' skin, to touch the outside world, and of course to let the outside world touch you, is not something akin to holyness, in lieu of feeling oneself, like the dimwits. One must be easy to please, and to be easy to please one must preferably be perspicacious, with a dash of youthful spirit and a certain purity of heart, else one is not easy to please, there is no way around it. I say this because some are happy to be blockheads, I assure you, positively, there are even more than a few: "I don't get wound up over things"... All right, we're starting to get the picture that you wind up your wrist watch in the morning and not your head!

To make a long story short, it's not too detrimental to be taken for a ride, even if it hurts a bit. In the last analysis you heal well and it's by and large much less cavernous than to find yourself looking at yourself or to look to find yourself, because then you are not at all easy to please, and further it is such a bore, I mean, you do exactly as you please, but it's rather noxious... there is no suspense... just by reading the title one understands the end... it's always the same... a dead giveaway.

Buddhist metaphysics

As human wisdom, in the last analysis, Buddhism is a metaphysics of relation. I'm not considering the theological aspect here, should there be any to consider, because that is more akin to mythology, thus infantilism, with Buddha being born to his mother and an elephant, etc.

In other words, Buddhism doesn't attain being. A poetic layer is then superimposed, quite a lovely one for that matter, which equates being and non being, and then you can go listen to a Tibetan gong for an eternity of immobile seconds.

That is what bothers me most in Buddhism, at least what I know of it, just the basics, it is the infantilism of its metaphysics. At the end of the day it is a philosophy of the absurd, something that places the spirit face to face with the absurd, and it is this absurdness which probes the spirit form which emerges the smile of Buddha... which should give one an irresistible urge to wipe it off! :-)

Everything flows, everything is change... relation is illusion. :-)

Actually, I prefer Indian metaphysics, at least there are two of them, like everywhere, one of being and one of relation, but there is one of being.

The Reign of Quantity

Portrait of Rene Geunon

Quality? It is one of the ten categories of substance. In short, and despite the opinions of all types of labelizors of products and services such as ISO thingamajig, it seems that quality cannot be measured. In this respect it is often opposed to quantity, which is also one of the ten categories of substance, but which, it, is measurable. Thus, friendship/love pertains eminently to quality, for how much could love weigh, or measure in height, width or depth?

Following the great traditions of the world, we are presently under the reign of quantity, 4th and last era say the Hindus for example, age of Iron which they call Kali Yuga, but which is often cited elsewhere, including by JC. In effect, efficiency rules far and wide, and we even try to measure quality, thus love. For this reason we prefer our feelings and emotions, which even if they are equally not easily measurable, are nevertheless perceived and experienced in an immanent and immediate fashion, whereas love is in the last analysis what remains when there is no emotion left, even if obviously love and emotion don't exclude one another. Yet we decree: no emotion, no love.

In this regard, the modern day westerner resembles the Greek barbarian of whom the Ancients said he destroys that which he doesn't understand. In effect, here we stand as Barbarians, mistaking truth with certainty (certainty being most often what is scientifically demonstrated), in other words we negate what we do not understand or cannot demonstrate. This is symptomatic of the tyranny of the reign of quantity. In this respect, Rene Geunon's Book "Signs of Our Times: A Critical Appraisal of The Reign of Quantity", written in the 1950's, is quasi-prophetic.


It's curious how this term has absolutely contradictory definitions, to the extent that the history of good is a succession of consented degradations.

Good is what is good for us, thus happiness. In that sense, a good, even if we say "my good", doesn't belong to anyone, it is not a possession, we hang on to it, all right, but we do not possess our good, because it is not to be found inside of us, it is on the contrary something fundamentally distinct from us, for example a person we love, thus essentially what is not us and that which we do not possess. In this first acceptation, a good is what attracts, thus precisely what is not us and makes us come out of ourselves.

Then we reduced good to a moral sense: good and bad. In reality, this is probably because Aristotle showed happiness as being linked to virtue: a good musician makes good music, a good man creates happiness, a bad man creates unhappiness. That's what Aristotle's ethics are based on, what he calls the science of happiness. Thus, after him, we have not ceased to undertake to isolate good to turn it into a primary and self-sufficient moral, a moral for its own sake. And today we continue on with those famed values, those of the Republic, those of the company, etc. because obviously we hardly speak of morality anymore, that wouldn't be progressive.

And finally, in the full logic of a mindless state ardently yearned for all, now that we find ourselves under the full-fledged dominion of quantity, good has become a synonym of possession, e.g. our real estate good, in other terms, by reinjecting the original meaning: our real estate happiness... Therefore, there is a price tag to happiness, your stock of happiness is necessarily quoted on Wall Street, and if you speculate on it, it's price goes up or down. For example, if everyone starts buying happiness in the form of disposable G-strings, tada, its price climbs, your rear end is up in the air and you're in tip top shape, but if people start selling short biological yogurts because no one wants them anymore, and your fridge is full of them, your happiness chart hits rock bottom and you become depressed, you are worth a lonely symbolic dollar.