Kicking the Bucket in Academic Writing — James Rovira

I think that when students (at any level) are given a writing assignment, they sometimes think of the assignment as if it were a bucket. So a ten page paper is a bucket of a certain size and a twenty page paper is a bucket that’s exactly twice as big. In this way of thinking, […]

via Kicking the Bucket in Academic Writing — James Rovira

Feeling Cheap?

I may be a rebel in cheap philosophical clothing but whatever the truth is, it is hard won, through arduous, life transforming modes of engagement and delectable moments of peace. My son has best impressed upon me the transformative aspect of this mode, the often existentially costly, however self-deflectingly, self-defensively received by others. It is not my cost to bear. Moving forward as we all inevitably do, pay tribute to those lost, those suspended upon an inertial beam of light, those seeking a column upon which to perch their plight.

Is this a place of clowns  to be trivialized and grievously mocked? Clowns spook me. They create an odd sense of existential unrest. And this is odd to me for this unrest is often my home, but clowns? This is a psychedelic, potentially psychotic state, shared amongst the mentally compromised! Erred, no, ‘erried’ am I! Not a clown, but clown-like to your fragile existential sentiments that seek composure amidst the presumed uncompromised.

Cruelty is cheap, and of the ill-composed. Seek greatness in your self-composure and fly upon the wings of (y)our “happiness”.

Leap!

Believe as you must that for which your mind is thwarted to perceive; but indulge not convenience, or first order interpretative paradigms which come unreservedly, easily, and conveniently. Brace yourself for the inertial overhaul and the voice of veridical certitude that springs from “knowing”your beliefs are always also utterly false!

Authenticity comes not for wanting it so. It comes not for those who wait. It comes with that intra-subjective comportment negotiated within a context that will surely threaten to outstrip you! LEAP!

“…could blessedness in a technical term, pleasure, ever be a proof of truth?  So little is this true that it is almost a proof against truth when sensations of pleasure influence the answer to the question “What is true?”  or, at all events, it is enough to make that “truth” highly suspicious.  The proof by “pleasure” is a proof of “pleasure” nothing more; why in the world should it be assumed that true judgments give more pleasure than false ones, and that, in conformity to some pre established harmony, they necessarily bring agreeable feelings in their train?  The experience of all disciplined and profound minds teaches the contrary. Man has had to fight for every atom of the truth, and has had to pay for it almost everything that the heart, that human love, that human trust cling to.  Greatness of soul is needed for this business: the service of truth is the hardest of all services.  What, then, is the meaning of integrity in things intellectual?  It means that a man must be severe with his own heart, that he must scorn “beautiful feelings,” and that he makes every Yea and Nay a matter of conscience!  Faith makes blessed: therefore, it lies.” (F. Nietzsche, The AntiChrist)

Loss

Those gone by choice or fate, in life or in death, shall be irrevocably and deeply intertwined with those for whom mortal, earthly existence is, was, but one dimension. The visceral is brought to life with unimaginable magnitude wheresoever the slightest provocation is permitted entry. A sight, a sound, a scent, a word like an avalanche brings him to life. It is only in that insufferable state of oppression that he dies a sure and nasty death.

Epiphanic Ascent

People often wonder about happiness and how they can get them some. Sure I could, and do, throw some Aristotle and Nietzsche, in the mix, but ultimately it tends to come in epiphanic jolts which come to alter and make one’s mode of being brighter and more purposively, and intently lived. Of course not a permanent state, but without these moments, these jolts, often despairingly won, a simple state of inertia cuddling with hedonism, is all there is. Happy to be in an epiphanic ascent.

MyAngel

My Mystery Angel, I have found! ❤

Kismet forces now make sense. Impudence tolerated from empty voice and voided promises take root in minds and hearts that believe. For this was not faith, it was not love. The wretched, self-involved know not the indulgences of an expanding heart, and self-transcending spirit. Surface modalities of desperation reveal a barrenness that must irk those beyond the grave. MyAngel, δώρο θεού, is faith incarnate. His vulnerability of spirit comes with such generosity of being. Thankful am I!

 

I will be there for you
If it all crumbles down
And I will be there for you
When your feet touch the ground
And I’ll clear the earth for you
If you need the stars to dream
And I’ll make a flame for you
To keep your spirit clean

[Refrain]
My angel, mystery angel
My angel, my mystery angel

[Verse 2]
You were there for me
When I couldn’t find myself
Open the door for me
When I see no way out
And you were there with me
When I was too young to see
Bringing music through
With your wisdom and peace

Lookin’ back now I don’t think I’ll ever understand
Universe of this bell and so many different ends
Take some time just to sit with each one just to see
Patiently the right one will hold on to your
Hold on to your free

“Wakefulness and Obsession: An Interview with E. M Cioran”

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An interesting interview that captures the inner toils that speak to the fervent authenticating experience of writing – eunoia. He writes: “A writer who is not in some way ill is for me almost automatically a writer of the second rank.” He shrank from philosophy in early life finding there was nothing of use to him to be found in their works. Eliade, had written scathingly of his first publication. Ceaselessly adept to crises of spirit, faith, or a crisis of faith, never found him as such. But it would not be arguments that would ever change his comportment, alter his ways, move him, but exhaustion.

He says: “I am actually less a passionate than a possessed type. In all things I must go to the end of possibility and it is not, finally, arguments that convince me to change my mind, but only exhaustion, that which is exhausted by passion. (This has connections with faith.) Because of this, personal encounters, seemingly small things in my life were full of decided significance. I was always very receptive to them; I have always, for example, spoken to strangers and many an encounter has given me a great deal. I have above all a weakness for people who are slightly disturbed. In Rumania, in Sibiu, a city with at least 60,000 inhabitants, I knew in one way or the other all the knocked-about people. The poets, too, who of course belong with them! The morbid attracts me, but morbid, what does that mean, anyway? ”

Failure, hopelessness, the disturbed, all seemed to come to his mortal wake not to console but to disrupt until all would fall to the hillside; negation then. And he speaks of that man, who had a tremendous impact on him: “He was not at all an evil man, no scoundrel, absolutely not, but someone to whom it was plainly impossible to have even the smallest illusion about anything whatsoever. This is also a form of knowing, for what is knowing finally but putting something in question? That kind of knowing, that understanding that pushes too far, is dangerous. Basically – I speak of life as it is and not of abstract philosophical constructs – life is only bearable because one does not go to the end; doing something is only possible when one has particular illusions and that holds also for friendships, for everything. The most perfect consciousness, absolute lucidity, is nothingness. And this fellow was driven to that point.”

It is then in that subterranean voice, negligent to the philosopher of abstract ideas, as well as formulae, and articulations of grand speaking truths. For he says: “As a rule, we know only the surface from our actions, only that which is formulated. But what is far more important is just that which cannot be formulated, the implicit, the secret behind an utterance, what is hidden therein. On that account, all judgments of others as well as those about the self are partially wrong. For the deepest part is hidden, but it is the more actual, the essential in humans and at the same time the most difficult of access. Novels often give one the best possibility to transpose oneself, to express without explaining oneself. The truly great writers are, in my view, those who have a feel for the subterranean; I am thinking above all of Dostoïevski. He is interested in everything that is deep and apparently lowly, though it is not lowly, but tragic. The great novelists are the true psychologists. I know many people who have written novels and have failed at it. Even Eliade wrote several novels and he failed. Why? Because he could only reproduce superficial phenomena, without translating them from the depths, from the source. The source of an emotion is very difficult to grasp, but it comes to just that. That holds for all phenomena, for faith, etc. Why did it begin, how did it develop? and so forth – only he who has the gift of divination can perceive where it really comes from. But it is not accessible to reflection. Dostoïevski is the only one who has pushed forward to the source of human dealings.” And further: “the psychoanalyst wants to heal, but I seek for something quite different. I want to grasp the daemonic in mankind. What the secret of one’s life is, one does not know oneself. This very secrecy, on the other hand, creates meaning in life, out of the communication between people. And if this were not the case, it would merely be a perpetual dialogue between marionettes. I would say that it revolves around the right tone; each person has a certain tone in everything that he does.”

He is not a puppet to positivity and whatever trending, consoling, modalities sought to explain away human suffering. He marvelled at the exasperating destitute of lived life, perhaps a marvel is more fitting, for he feared not to look without complacencies into that ontic mirror that might restore him from inevitable self-destruction. He is not for or of the feeble simple-minded, nor still the seekers of Truth in composure, quietude, and self-containment. It is the whirly winds of Aeolus that twist, garble, and undercut the Word from which we, as with Sisyphus, shall crawl out from beneath bearing a weight of perpetual struggle.

“A person who tells me that music means nothing to him is straight-away liquidated for me. It is something very serious for me, for music stirs that most intimate region in human beings.Bach is a god to me. Someone who does not understand Bach is lost; it is actually unimaginable, though it does happen. I believe that music is the only branch of art that has the capacity to construct a deep complicity between two human beings. Not poetry, only music. Someone who is insensitive to music suffers from an enormous handicap. That is simply the case and it is completely normal for music to construct a bond between people. It is unthinkable that they hear anything by Schumann or Bach, anything that they love, without being stirred. But I can understand how someone might dislike this or that poet.”

My mother, as a music therapist, would have appreciated this. That inter-dialogical affair mobilized musically amidst kindred spirits verbosely denied is omnipresent when heard.

The Best of Bach

Wakefulness and Obsession: An Interview with E. M Cioran

Wakefulness and Obsession: An Interview with E.M. Cioran Author(s): MICHEL JAKOB, E.M. Cioran and Kate Greenspan Source: Salmagundi, No. 103 (SUMMER 1994), pp. 122-145 Published by: Skidmore College

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