The Work … and man made this curse a pleasure

Instead of man striving for a bright present in the world, for a solar and sparkling existence, instead of living for himself – not in the sense of selfishness, but of inner growth – he became a sinful and impotent slave of the reality outside

„Oamenii muncesc în general prea mult pentru a mai putea fi ei înşişi. Munca este un blestem. Iar omul a făcut din acest blestem o voluptate. A munci din toate forţele numai pentru muncă, a găsi o bucurie într-un efort care nu duce decât la realizări irelevante, a concepe că te poţi realiza numai printr-o muncă obiectivă şi neîncetată, iată ceea ce este revoltător şi ininteligibil. Munca susţinută şi neîncetată tâmpeşte, trivializează şi impersonalizează. Ea deplasează centrul de preocupare şi interes din zona subiectivă întro zonă obiectivă a lucrurilor, într-un plan fad de obiectivitate. Omul nu se interesează atunci de destinul său personal, de educaţia lui lăuntrică, de intensitatea unor fosforescente interne şi de realizarea unei prezente iradiante, ci de fapte, de lucruri. Munca adevărată, care ar fi o activitate de continuă transfigurare, a devenit o activitate de exteriorizare, de ieşire din centrul fiinţei. Este caracteristic că în lumea modernă munca indică o activitate exclusiv exterioară. De aceea, prin ea omul nu se realizează, ci realizează. Faptul că fiecare om trebuie să aibă o carieră, să intre într-o formă de viaţă care aproape niciodată nu-i convine, este expresia acestei tendinţe de imbecilizare prin muncă. Să munceşti pentru ca să trăieşti, iată o fatalitate care la om e mai dureroasă decât la animal. Căci la acesta activitatea este atât de organică, încât el n-o separă de existenta sa proprie, pe când omul îşi dă seama de plusul considerabil pe care-l adaugă fiinţei sale complexul de forme al muncii. In frenezia muncii, la om se manifestă una din tendinţele lui de a iubi răul, când acesta este fatal şi frecvent. Şi în muncă omul a uitat de el însuşi. Dar n-a uitat ajungând la naivitatea simplă şi dulce, ci la o exteriorizare vecină cu imbecilitatea. Prin muncă a devenit din subiect obiect, adică un animal, cu defectul de a fi mai putin sălbatic. In loc ca omul să tindă la o prezentă strălucitoare în lume, la o existentă solară şi sclipitoare, în loc să trăiască pentru el însuşi – nu în sens de egoism, ci de creştere interioară – a ajuns un rob păcătos şi impotent al realităţii din afară.”

“People generally work too much to be themselves. Work is a curse. And man made this curse a pleasure. To work with all one’s strength only for work, to find joy in an effort that leads only to irrelevant achievements, to conceive that one can achieve oneself only through objective and unceasing work, this is what is revolting and unintelligible. Sustained and incessant work dulls, trivializes and impersonalizes. It moves the center of concern and interest from the subjective area to an objective area of things, in a bland plane of objectivity. Man is then not interested in his personal destiny, in his inner education, in the intensity of some internal phosphorescence and in the realization of a radiant present, but in facts, in things. True work, which would be an activity of continuous transfiguration, has become an activity of externalization, of leaving the center of being. It is characteristic that in the modern world work indicates an exclusively external activity. Therefore, through it man does not realize himself, but achieves. The fact that every man has to have a career, to enter into a form of life that almost never suits him, is the expression of this tendency to become imbecile through work. To work in order to live, here is a fatality that is more painful for humans than for animals. Because for him the activity is so organic that he does not separate it from his own existence, while man realizes the considerable plus that the complex of forms of work adds to his being. In the frenzy of work, man manifests one of his tendencies to love evil, when it is fatal and frequent. And in work man forgot about himself. But he did not forget, reaching simple and sweet naivety, but an externalization bordering on imbecility. Through work he became an object from a subject, i.e. an animal, with the defect of being less wild. Instead of man striving for a bright present in the world, for a solar and sparkling existence, instead of living for himself – not in the sense of selfishness, but of inner growth – he became a sinful and impotent slave of the reality outside .”

– Emil Cioran

A Brief Abstract of The Mahabharata

Consisting of 18 books, or parvas, this story revolves around the conflict between two factions of cousins, the Kauravas and Pandavas, for the throne of Hastinapura. It includes the famous Bhagavad Gita, a sacred Hindu scripture and a philosophical conversation between Prince Arjuna and Lord Krishna. The epic explores various themes such as duty, righteousness, family, war, and the nature of reality. It contains many notable characters: Krishna, Arjuna, Yudhishthira, Bhima, Nakula, Sahadeva, Draupadi, Duryodhana, and Karna. Known for its narrative, the moral, and philosophical dilemmas presented; it has a profound influence on Indian culture, literature, and religious beliefs.

महाभारत, संक्षिप्त सार

Book 1 Adi Parva, The Beginning

The daughter of the river was named Girika and the king made her his wife. Once, the time for intercourse arrived and Vasu’s wife, Girika, having purified herself by bathing at the fertile time, informed her husband about her state. But on that very day, his ancestors came to him and asked the best of kings and wisest of men to kill some deer. Thinking that the command of his ancestors should be followed, he went out to hunt, thinking of Girika, who was exceedingly beautiful and like Shri herself. He was so excited that the semen was discharged in the beautiful forest and wishing to save it, the king of the earth collected it in the leaf of a tree. The lord thought that his semen should not be wasted in vain and that his wife’s fertile period should not pass barren. Then the king thought about this many times and the best of kings firmly decided that his semen would be productive, since the semen was issued when his queen’s time was right. Learned in the subtleties of dharma and artha, the king consecrated the semen, which was productive for producing progeny, and addressed a hawk that was seated nearby. ‘O amiable one! Please take this seed to my wife Girika. She is in her season now. The swift hawk took it from him and flew speedily through the sky.

The Adi Parva introduces the key characters and provides the background leading up to the great Kurukshetra War. It begins with the sage Vyasa narrating the story to the divine sage Narada. Vyasa, the author of the Mahabharata, is the son of the sage Parashara and Satyavati. He is requested by Brahma, the creator of the universe, to compose the epic to enlighten and guide humanity.

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The Final Roadside Circle of Picnic Paradise

Everything is now understandable. It’s odious, that I understand…. Better if I understood nothing, better if, upon regaining consciousness, I shrugged my shoulders and climbed out of the bath. Would it have been understandable to Strogoff and Einstein and Petrarch? Imagination is a priceless gift, but it must not be given an inward direction. Only outward, only outward… What a tasty worm some corrupter has dropped from his rod into this stagnant pool! And how accurately timed! Yes indeed, if I were commander of Wells’ Martians, I would not have bothered with fighter tripods, heat rays, and other such nonsense. Illusory existence … no, this is not a narcotic, a narcotic has a long way to go to approach it. In a way this is exactly appropriate. Here. Now. To each time its own. Poppy seeds and hemp, the kingdom of sweet blurred shadows and peace — for the beggar, the worn-out, the downtrodden… But here no one wants peace, here no one is dying of hunger, here is simply a bore. A well-fed, well-heated, drunken bore. It’s not that the world is bad, it’s just plain dreary. World without prospects, world without promise. But in the end man is not a carp, he still remains a man. Yes, it is no kingdom of shades, it is indeed the real existence, without detraction, without dreary confusion. Slug is moving on the world and the world will not mind subjecting itself to it.






Some strange and very new sensation was slowly filling him. He realized that this sensation wasn’t actually new, that it had long been hiding somewhere inside him, but he only now became aware of it, and everything fell into place. And an idea, which had previously seemed like nonsense, like the insane ravings of a senile old man, turned out to be his sole hope and his sole meaning of life. It was only now that he’d understood—the one thing that he still had left, the one thing that had kept him afloat in recent months, was the hope for a miracle. He, the idiot, the dummy, had been spurning this hope, trampling on it, mocking it, drinking it away—because that’s what he was used to and because his whole life, ever since his childhood, he had never relied on anyone but himself. And ever since his childhood, this self-reliance had always been measured by the amount of money he managed to wrench, wrestle, and wring out of the surrounding indifferent chaos. That’s how it had always been, and that’s how it would have continued, if he hadn’t found himself in a hole from which no amount of money could rescue him, in which self-reliance was utterly pointless. And now this hope—no longer the hope but the certainty of a miracle—was filling him to the brim, and he was already amazed that he’d managed to live in such a bleak, cheerless gloom …

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Norstrilia, the story is simple …




But he didn’t want girls. He wanted postage stamps …

“You may not know it, my darling,” spieked the great bird-man, “but long before these people build cities, there were others in the Earth – the ones who came after the Ancient World fell. They went far beyond the limitations of the human form. They conquered death. They did not have sickness. They did not need love. They sought to be abstractions lying outside of time. And they died, E’lamelanie – they died terribly. Some became monsters, preying on the remnants of true men for reasons which ordinary men could not even begin to understand. Others were like oysters, wrapped up in their own sainthood. They had all forgotten that humanness is itself imperfection and corruption, that what is perfect is no longer understandable. We have the fragments of the Word, and we are truer to the deep traditions of people than people themselves are, but we must never be foolish enough to look for perfection in this life or to count on our own powers to make us really different from what we are. You and I are animals, darling, not even real people, but people do not understand the teaching of Joan, that whatever seems human is human. It is the word which quickens, not the shape or the blood or the texture of flesh or hair or feathers. And there is that power which you and I do not name, but which we love and cherish because we need it more than do the people on the surface. Great beliefs always come out of the sewers of cities, not out of the towers of the ziggurats. Furthermore, we are discarded animals, not used ones. All of us down here are the rubbish which mankind has thrown away and has forgotten. We have a great advantage in this because we know from the very beginning of our lives that we are worthless. And why are we worthless? Because a higher standard and a higher truth says that we are – the conventional law and the unwritten customs of mankind. But I feel love for you, my daughter, and you have love for me. We know that everything which loves has a value in itself, and that therefore this worthlessness of underpeople is wrong. We are forced to look beyond the minute and the hour to the place where no clocks work and no day dawns. There is a world outside of time, and it is to that which we appeal. I know that you have a love for the devotional life, my child, and I commend you for it, but it would be a sorry faith which waited for passing travelers or which believed that a miracle or two could set the nature of things right and whole. The people on the surface think they have gone beyond the old problems, because they do not have buildings which they call churches or temples, and they do not have professional religious men within their communities. But the higher power and the large problems still wait for all men, whether men like it or not. Today, Believing among mankind is a ridiculous hobby, tolerated by the Instrumentality because the Believers are unimportant and weak, but mankind has moments of enormous passion which will come again and in which we will share. So don’t you wait for your hero beyond the stars. If you have a good devotional life within you, it is already here, waiting to be watered by your tears and ploughed up by your hard, clear thoughts. And if you don’t have a devotional life, there are good lives outside.

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Fire, … it’s good to have room for new things

Even in a large city, the streets after a certain advanced hour of night are relatively still. What one hears and sees are apparitions and sounds to which both our eyes and our ears have long since grown accustomed. There are none of the usual sounds. People are at home, sitting around the cozy family table, or else in bars hunkered over their beers and political discussions, or in the concert hall, reverently listening to the pieces of music being performed, or at the theater, following the suspenseful goings-on upon the brightly lit stage, or else they are standing in pairs, or in groups of three or seven on some melancholy street corner, delving into profundities, or else perhaps aimlessly walking in some direction or other. “Hey there, car!” another cries out, and somewhere there might be a poet buried in his isolated room, drunkards wandering in wretched bliss from one still to another, bawling and harassing the passersby; perhaps a horse pulling a hackney cab is collapsing somewhere, a woman fainting, a scoundrel being apprehended by the always vigilant and safety-restoring police force—and suddenly someone shouts: “Fire!” Quite close by, it seems, a fire has broken out. People were just standing around, indecisive and bored, about to accuse the hour of lacking all interest and in any case starting to feel chilled, and suddenly here’s this great novelty being presented, something unexpected to kindle our enthusiasm. Everyone lurches forward and without realizing it has already begun a conversation with whoever happens to be standing alongside, cheeks are glowing, and now people are even starting to leap and run. They’re suddenly doing something they haven’t tried in a good two years. All at once the world appears changed, expanded, thicker, and more tangible.

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Le Système des objets, into the domestic universe


The Modern Object Liberated in Function

The style of furniture changes as the individual’s relationships to family and society change. Corner divans and beds, coffee tables, shelving – a plethora of new elements are now supplanting the traditional range of furniture. The organization of space changes, too, as beds become day-beds and sideboards and wardrobes give way to built-in storage. Things fold and unfold, are concealed, appear only when needed. Naturally such innovations are not due to free experiment: for the most part the greater mobility, flexibility and convenience they afford are the result of an involuntary adaptation to a shortage of space – a case of necessity being the mother of invention. Whereas the old-fashioned dining-room was heavily freighted with moral convention, ‘modern’ interiors, in their ingeniousness, often give the impression of being mere functional expedients. Their ‘absence of style’ is in the first place an absence of room, and maximum functionality is a solution of last resort whose outcome is that the dwelling-place, though remaining closed to the outside, loses its internal organization. Such a restructuring of space and the objects in it, unaccompanied by any reconversion, must in the first instance be considered an impoverishment.

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ism, n.

A form of doctrine, theory, or practice having, or claiming to have, a distinctive character or relation: chiefly used disparagingly, and sometimes with implied reference to schism.


(Beginning is nothing
Ending is also nothingness
I am nothingness.

Etymology: Representing French -isme, Latin -ismus, < Greek -ισμός, forming nouns of action from verbs in -ίζειν, e.g. βαπτίζειν to dip, baptize, βαπτισμός the action of dipping, baptism. An allied suffix was -ισμα(τ-), which more strictly expressed the finished act or thing done, and which in some cases is the source of modern -ism. Besides its free use as a suffix forming verbs on ordinary nouns and adjectives, -ίζειν was (as mentioned under -ize suffix) affixed to national names, with the sense to act or ‘play’ the people in question, and hence to act like, do after the manner of, practise the habits, customs, or language of, side with or adhere to the party of, those people. Hence the noun in -ισμός had the sense of acting or doing like, siding with, adhesion to, or speaking like the people in question; e.g. Ἀττικίζειν to Atticize, to side with the Athenians, to use the Attic dialect; hence Ἀττικισμός, Atticism, a siding with Athens, Attic style of language, etc. The Septuagint (Esther viii. 17) and New Testament have Ἰουδαίζειν to Judaize, to live like the Jews. The derivative Ἰουδαισμός Judaism, the manner of the Jews, occurs in the Septuagint (2 Macc. ii. 21). The Latin Jūdaismus occurs in Tertullian (c200); Jūdaizāre in the Vulgate. Origen (a250) has Χριστιανίζειν to play the Christian, act the part of a Christian, practise Christian principles, and Justin Martyr (a150) has Χριστιανισμός the practice of Christians, Christianity. Hence late Latin chrīstiānizāre in Tertullian, chrīstiānismus in Tertullian, Augustine and Jerome. On the type of these, -ισμός, -ismus, became the ordinary ending to form names of religious, ecclesiastical, or philosophical systems; thus pāgānismus is cited by Du Cange from a council of 744. The Old French representation of this, paienisme, paienime, painime (12th cent.) is probably the earliest French example, and appears in English as painime, painim in the 13th cent. But, in the modern form and sense, Judaisme is found a1500, and christianisme (a1500 in French) c1525 in English. From the 16th cent. such formations are numerous.

1680 E. Pettit Vision of Purgatory 46 He was the great Hieroglyphick of Jesuitism, Puritanism, Quaquerism, and of all Isms from Schism. 1756 Monthly Rev. 14 359 Arianism, Socinianism, Arminianism, or any other ism. 1789 H. Walpole Lett. 4 Nov. Alas! you would soon squabble about Socianism, or some of those isms. 1808 R. Southey Select. from Lett. (1856) II. 182 It has nothing to do with Calvinism nor Arminianism, nor any of the other isms. 1811 T. J. Hogg Life Shelley (1858) I. 373 He is nothing,—no ‘ist’, professes no ‘-ism’ but superbism and irrationalism. 1820 R. Polwhele Introd. Lavington’s Enthus. Method. & Papists 118 It has no connection with Methodism, or Puritanism, or any ism or schism. 1820 T. Carlyle Let. to M. Allen Oct. I expect much pleasure from talking over old bygone things, from discussing Spürzheimism, Whiggism, Church of Englandism, and all other imaginable ‘isms’. 1840 Fraser’s Mag. 21 702 All the untidy isms of the day shall be dissipated. 1843 T. Carlyle Past & Present ii. xv. 158 This is Abbot Samson’s Catholicism of the Twelfth Century;—something like the Ism of all true men in all true centuries, I fancy. 1864 J. R. Lowell Rebellion in Prose Wks. (1890) V. 138 That class of untried social theories which are known by the name of isms. 1884 Kendal Mercury 3 Oct. 4/7 The principles on which Education Acts are based, irrespective of isms and creeds. 1928 G. B. Shaw Intell. Woman’s Guide Socialism lxxxiii. 447 The proletarian Isms are very much alike. 1968 S. C. Hutchison Hist. Royal Acad. xvii. 183 He saw no place in art for abstractions and ‘isms’ and had a very low opinion of their adherents. 1974 Listener 14 Feb. 220/1 Impressionism became the most successful ‘ism’ in the history of art.

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