Wednesday, April 07, 2021

Hannah Arendt on Love

Fearlessness is what love seeks... Such fearlessness exists only in the complete calm that can no longer be shaken by events expected of the future…
by (https://www.brainpickings.org/2019/02/25/love-and-saint-augustine-hannah-arendt/) Illustration by Maurice Sendak from I’ll Be You and You Be Me by Ruth Krauss.
Also https://aeon.co/videos/whats-essential-is-i-must-understand-a-rare-candid-interview-with-hannah-arendt

Alan Watts on Freedom

The meaning of freedom can never be grasped by the divided mind. If I feel separate from my experience, and from the world, freedom will seem to be the extent to which I can push the world around, and fate the extent to which the world pushes me around. But to the whole mind there is no contrast of “I” and the world. There is just one process acting, and it does everything that happens. It raises my little finger and it creates earthquakes. Or, if you want to put it that way, I raise my little finger and also make earthquakes. No one fates and no one is being fated.
by (https://www.brainpickings.org/2021/03/16/alan-watts-freedom-fear-love/) Art by Thomas Wright from his Original Theory or New Hypothesis of the Universe, 1750.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

The Spell of the Sensuous by David Abram

Magic… in its perhaps most primordial sense, is the experience of existing in a world made up of multiple intelligences, the intuition that every form one perceives — from the swallow swooping overhead to the fly on a blade of grass, and indeed the blade of grass itself — is an experiencing form, an entity with its own predilections and sensations, albeit sensations that are very different from our own.
by (https://www.brainpickings.org/2019/07/07/the-spell-of-the-sensuous-david-abram/)

Tuesday, February 09, 2021

Song: “Blue Moon” by Snowblink
Mad Girl’s Love Song

I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead;
I lift my lids and all is born again.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

The stars go waltzing out in blue and red,
And arbitrary blackness gallops in:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

I dreamed that you bewitched me into bed
And sung me moon-struck, kissed me quite insane.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

God topples from the sky, hell’s fires fade:
Exit seraphim and Satan’s men:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

I fancied you’d return the way you said,
But I grow old and I forget your name.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

I should have loved a thunderbird instead;
At least when spring comes they roar back again.
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)
by Sylvia Plath in The Bell Jar

by (https://literaryjukebox.brainpickings.org/post/30583159689)
by (https://www.brainpickings.org/2021/01/31/elizabeth-bishop-one-art/)

Friday, February 05, 2021

Simone Weil on Attention and Grace

We have to try to cure our faults by attention and not by will.

The will only controls a few movements of a few muscles, and these movements are associated with the idea of the change of position of nearby objects. I can will to put my hand flat on the table. If inner purity, inspiration or truth of thought were necessarily associated with attitudes of this kind, they might be the object of will. As this is not the case, we can only beg for them… Or should we cease to desire them? What could be worse? Inner supplication is the only reasonable way, for it avoids stiffening muscles which have nothing to do with the matter. What could be more stupid than to tighten up our muscles and set our jaws about virtue, or poetry, or the solution of a problem. Attention is something quite different.

Pride is a tightening up of this kind. There is a lack of grace (we can give the word its double meaning here) in the proud man. It is the result of a mistake.

by (https://www.brainpickings.org/2015/08/19/simone-weil-attention-gravity-and-grace/)

Wednesday, January 06, 2021

Kierkegaard on Boredom

In a section of his 1843 masterwork Either/Or: A Fragment of Life, which also gave us Kierkegaard on our greatest source of unhappiness, the Danish philosopher defines boredom as a sense of emptiness and examines it not as an absence of stimulation but as an absence of meaning — an idea that also explains why it’s possible, today more than ever, to be overstimulated but existentially bored.
by (https://www.brainpickings.org/2015/01/14/kierkegaard-boredom-idleness-either-or/)
Illustration by Edward Gorey from ‘The Shrinking of Treehorn’ by Florence Parry Heide.

Saturday, January 02, 2021

Too-ticky’s Guide to Life from Tove Jansson

Too-ticky offers comforting solidarity in Moomintroll’s lament that he doesn’t understand the snow: I don’t either… You believe it’s cold, but if you build yourself a snowhouse it’s warm. You think it’s white, but at times it looks pink, and another time it’s blue. It can be softer than anything, and then again harder than stone. Nothing is certain.
by (https://www.brainpickings.org/2014/09/29/too-ticky-quotes-tove-jansson/)

Thursday, December 31, 2020