So-Called Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 218 quotes )
A book no more contains reality than a clock contains time. A book may measure so-called reality as a clock measures so-called time; a book may create an illusion of reality as a clock creates an illusion of time; a book may be real, just as a clock is real (both more real, perhaps, than those ideas to which they allude); but let's not kid ourselves - all a clock contains is wheels and springs and all a book contains is sentences.
To simplify your life, just think of yourself as a four-year-old child. Try to imagine the way he thinks of reality. If you have to talk to someone about a so-called complicated matter, see how you can simplify it. No matter with whom you are talking, feel that you are a child and that person is also a child. When a childlike quality comes into your life, everything automatically becomes simple.
Instruction in world history in the so-called high schools is even today in a very sorry condition. Few teachers understand that the study of history can never be to learn historical dates and events by heart and recite them by rote; that what matters is not whether the child knows exactly when this battle or that was fought, when a general was born, or even when a monarch (usually a very insignificant one) came into the crown of his forefathers. No, by the living God, this is very unimportant. To 'learn' history means to seek and find the forces which are the causes leading to those effects which we subsequently perceive as historical events.
Whenever a state or an individual cited 'insufficient funds' as an excuse for neglecting this important thing or that, it was indicative of the extent to which reality had been distorted by the abstract lens of wealth. During periods of so-called economic depression, for example, societies suffered for want of all manner of essential goods, yet investigation almost invariably disclosed that there were plenty of goods available. Plenty of coal in the ground, corn in the fields, wool on the sheep. What was missing was not materials but an abstract unit of measurement called 'money.' It was akin to a starving woman with a sweet tooth lamenting that she couldn't bake a cake because she didn't have any ounces. She had butter, flour, eggs, milk, and sugar, she just didn't have any ounces, any pinches, any pints. The loony legacy of money was that the arithmetic by which things were measured had become more valuable than the things themselves.
When you've lived as long as I have, you tend to think you've heardeverything, that there's nothing left that can shock you anymore. You grow a little complacent about your so-called knowledge of the world, and then, every once in a while, something comes along thatjolts you out of your smug cocoon of superiority, that reminds you allover again that you don't understand the first thing about life.
American cities are like badger holes, ringed with trash--all of them--surrounded by piles of wrecked and rusting automobiles, and almost smothered in rubbish. Everything we use comes in boxes, cartons, bins, the so-called packaging we love so much. The mountain of things we throw away are much greater than the things we use.
Ever since the days when such formidable mediocrities as Galsworthy, Dreiser, Tagore, Maxim Gorky, Romain Rolland and Thomas Mann were being accepted as geniuses, I have been perplexed and amused by fabricated notions about so-called "great books." That, for instance, Mann's asinine "Death in Venice," or Pasternak's melodramatic, vilely written "Dr. Zhivago," or Faulkner's corn-cobby chronicles can be considered "masterpieces" or at least what journalists term "great books," is to me the sort of absurd delusion as when a hypnotized person makes love to a chair. My greatest masterpieces of twentieth century prose are, in this order: Joyce's "Ulysses"; Kafka's "Transformation"; Bely's "St. Petersburg," and the first half of Proust's fairy tale, "In Search of Lost Time.
...an author, like any other so-called artist, is a man in whom the normal vanity of all men is so vastly exaggerated that he finds it a sheer impossibility to hold it in. His over-powering impulse is to gyrate before his fellow men, flapping his wings and emitting defiant yells. This being forbidden by the police of all civilized nations, he takes it out by putting his yells on paper. Such is the thing called self-expression.
Hidden Highlands was maybe a little richer but not that different from many of the other small, wealthy and scared enclaves nestled in the hills and valleys around Los Angeles. Walls and gates, guardhouses and private security forces were the secret ingredients of the so-called melting pot of southern California.
Look at them. There are your true philosophers. I think that Mack and the boys know everything that has ever happened in the world and possibly everything that will happen. I think they survive in this particular world better than other people. In a time when people tear themselves to pieces with ambition and nervousness and covetousness, they are relaxed. All of our so-called successful men are sick men, with bad stomachs, and bad souls, but Mack and the boys are healthy and curiously clean. They can do what they want. They can satisfy their appetites without calling them something else.
In my view, the pro-life movement at this point should focus on seeking to reduce the number of abortions. At times it will require political education and legal fights, at times it will require education and the establishment of alternatives to abortion, such as adoption centers. Unfortunately, such measures are sometimes opposed by so-called hard-liners in the pro-life movement. These hard-liners are fools. Because they want to outlaw all abortions, they refuse to settle for stopping some abortions; the consequence is that they end up preventing no abortions.
All real art is, in its true sense, is a religious impulse; there is no such thing as a non-religious subject. But much bad or downright sacrilegious art depicts so-called religious subjects…Conversely, much great religious art has been written or painted or composed by people who thought they were atheists.
Man does not live by bread alone. I have known millionaires starving for lack of the nutriment which alone can sustain all that is human in man, and I know workmen, and many so-called poor men, who revel in luxuries beyond the power of those millionaires to reach. It is the mind that makes the body rich. There is no class so pitiably wretched as that which possesses money and nothing else. Money can only be the useful drudge of things immeasurably higher than itself. Exalted beyond this, as it sometimes is, it remains Caliban still and still plays the beast. My aspirations take a higher flight. Mine be it to have contributed to the enlightenment and the joys of the mind, to the things of the spirit, to all that tends to bring into the lives of the toilers of Pittsburgh sweetness and light. I hold this the noblest possible use of wealth
Young ladies take their notions of our sex from the novels written by their own, and compared with the monstrosities that masquerade for men in the pages of that nightmare literature, Phytagoras' plucked bird and Frankenstein's demon were fair average specimens of humanity. In these so-called books, the chief lover, or Greek god, as he is admiringly referred to -by the way, they do not say which "Greek god" it is that the gentleman bears such a striking likeness to; it might be hump-backed Vulcan, or double-faced Janus, or even driveling Silenus. He resembles the whole family of them, however, in being a blackguard, and perhaps this is what is meant.
The situation Larch was thinking of was war, the so-called war in Europe; Larch, and many others, feared that the war wouldn’t stay there. (‘I’m sorry, Homer,’ Larch imagined having to tell the boy. ‘I don’t want you to worry, but you have a bad heart; it just wouldn’t stand up to a war.’) What Larch meant was that his own heart would never stand up to Homer Wells’s going to war. The love of Wilbur Larch for Homer Wells extended even to his tampering with history, a field wherein he was an admitted amateur, but it was nonetheless a field that he respected and also loved. (In an earlier entry in the file on Homer Wells – an entry that Dr. Larch removed, for it lent an incorrect tone of voice, or at least a tone of voice unusual for history – Dr. Larch had written: ‘I love nothing or no one as much as I love Homer Wells. Period.
This is a dynamic and mysterious universe and human life is, no doubt, conditioned by imponderables of which we are only dimly aware. People sometimes say, "the strangest coincidence happened." Coincidences may seem strange, but they are never a result of caprice. They are orderly laws in the spiritual life of man. They affect and influence our lives profoundly. These so-called imponderables are so important that you should become spiritually sensitized to them. Indeed, the more spiritually minded you become the more acute your contact will be with these behind-the-scenes forces. By being alive to them through insight, instruction, and illumination, you can make your way past errors and mistakes on which, were you less spiritually sensitive, you might often stumble.
Every sign, linguistic or nonlinguistic, spoken or written (in the usual sense of this opposition), as a small or large unity, can be cited, put between quotation marks; thereby it can break with every given context, and engender infinitely new contexts in an absolutely nonsaturable fashion. This does not suppose that the mark is valid outside its context, but on the contrary that there are only contexts without any center of absolute anchoring. This citationality, duplication, or duplicity, this iterability of the mark is not an accident or anomaly, but is that (normal/abnormal) without which a mark could no longer even have a so-called “normal” functioning. What would a mark be that one could not cite? And whose origin could not be lost on the way?
As I sat in the hot, salty water, I thought, 'No wonder Mr. Bubble always gave me a urinary tract infection and hives.' Mr Bubble was for common people. Mr. Bubble was for my so-called brother, their true child. I was a Vanderbilt. I should bathe in condiments and seasonings. It was in my Vanderbilt genes.
This little theater of mine has as many doors into as many boxes as you please, ten or a hundred thousand, and behind each door exactly what you seek awaits you. It is a pretty cabinet of pictures, my dear friend; but it would be quite useless to go through it as you are. You would be checked and blinded by it at every turn by what you are pleased to call your personality. You have no doubt guessed long since that the conquest of time and the escape from reality, or however else it may be that you choose to describe your longing, means simply the wish to be relieved of your so-called personality. That is the prison where you lie.
I am firmly convinced to-day that, generally speaking, it is in youth that men lay the essential groundwork of their creative thought, wherever that creative thought exists. I make a distinction between the wisdom of age- which can only arise from the greater profundity and foresight that are based on the experiences of a long life- and the creative genius of youth, which blossoms out in thoughts and ideas with inexhaustible fertility, without being able to put these into practice immediately, because of their very superabundance. These furnish the building materials and plans for the future; and it is from them that age takes the stones and builds the edifice, unless the so-called wisdom of the years may have smothered the creative genius of youth.
Men like Caesar and Pompey--they're not heroes, Meto. They're monsters. They call their greed and ambition "honour," and to satisfy their so-called honour they'll tear the world apart. But who am I to judge them? Every man does what he must, to protect his share of the world. What's the difference between killing whole villages and armies, and killing a single man? Caesar's reasons and mine are different only in degree. The consequences and the suffering still spread to the innocent (Gordianus the Finder to his son Meto)
The fact the enemies of God must face is that modern civilization has conquered the world, but in doing so has lost its soul. And in losing its soul it will lose the very world it gained. Even our own so-called Liberal culture in these United States which has tried to avoid complete secularization by leaving little zones of individual freedom is in danger of forgetting that these zones were preserved only because religion was in their soul. And as religion fades so will freedom, for only where the spirit of God is, is there liberty.
There is a strange duality in the human which makes for an ethical paradox. We have definitions of good qualities and of bad; not changing things, but generally considered good and bad throughout the ages and throughout the species. Of the good, we think always of wisdom, tolerance, kindliness, generosity, humility; and the qualities of cruelty, greed, self-interest, graspingness, and rapacity are universally considered undesirable. And yet in our structure of society, the so-called and considered good qualities are invariable concomitants of failure, while the bad ones are the cornerstones of success…Perhaps no other animal is so torn between alternatives. Man might be described fairly adequately, if simply, as a two-legged paradox.
I figured out years ago that the human species is totally fucked and has been for a long time. I also know that the sick, media-consumer culture in America continues to make this so-called problem worse. But the trick, folks, is not to give a fuck. Like me. I really don'tcare. I stopped worrying about all this temporal bullshit a long time ago. It's meaningless.