When one of my Japanese teacups is broken, I imagine that the real cause was not the careless hand of a maid but the anxieties of the figures inhabiting the curves of that porcelain. Their grim decision to commit suicide doesn't shock me: they used the maid as one of us might use a gun.
Life is an experimental journey undertaken involuntarily. It is a journey of the spirit through the material world and, since it is the spirit that travels, it is the spirit that is experienced. That is why there exist contemplative souls who have lived more intensely, more widely, more tumultuously than others who have lived their lives purely externally. The end result is what matters. What one felt was what one experienced. One retires to bed as wearily from having dreamed as from having done hard physical labor. One never lives so intensely as when one has been thinking hard.
Have you ever considered, beloved other, how invisible we are to each other? We look at each other without seeing. We listen to each other and hear only a voice inside out self. The words of others are mistakes of our hearing, shipwrecks of our understanding. How confidently we believe OUR meanings of other people's words.
What can I expect from myself? My sensation in all their horrible acuity, and a profound awareness of feeling. A sharp mind that only destroys me, and an unusual capacity for dreaming to keep me entertained. A dead will and a reflection that cradles it, like a living child. From, The Book of Disquiet
And I, who timidly hate life, fear death with fascination. I fear this nothingness that could be something else, and I fear it as nothing and as something else simultaneously, as if gross horror and non-existence could coincide there, as if my coffin could entrap the eternal breathing of a bodily soul, as if immortality could be tormented by confinement. The idea of hell, which only a satanic soul could have invented seems to me to have derived from this sort of confusion - a mixture of two different fears that contradict and contaminate each other.
There's no greater tragedy than an equal intensity, in the same soul or the same man, of the intellectual sentiment and the moral sentiment. For a man to be utterly and absolutely moral, he has to be a bit stupid. For a man to be absolutely intellectual, he has to be a bit immoral.
To live is to be someone else. Feeling is impossible if we feel today as we felt yesterday: to feel today the same thing we felt yesterday is not to feel at all--it's merely to remember today what we felt yesterday, since today we are the living cadaver of yesterday's lost life.
Every day things happen in the world that cannot be explained by any law of things we know. Every day they're mentioned and forgotten, and the same mystery that brought them takes them away, transforming their secret into oblivion. Such is the law by which things that can't be explained must be forgotten. The visible world goes on as usual in the broad daylight. Otherness watches us from the shadows.
Everything around me is evaporating. My whole life, my memories, my imagination and its contents, my personality - it's all evaporating. I continuously feel that I was someone else, that I felt something else, that I thought something else. What I'm attending here is a show with another set. And the show I'm attending is myself.
I have at this moment so many fundamental thoughts, so many truly metaphysical things to say, that I suddenly get tired and decide not to write any more, not to think any more, but to allow the fever of speaking to make me sleepy, and with my eyes closed, like a cat, I play with everything I could have said.
Silence emerges from the sound of rain and spreads in a crescendo of gray monotony over the narrow street I contemplate. I’m sleeping while awake, standing by the window, leaning against it as against everything. I search in myself for the sensations I feel before these falling threads of darkly luminous water that stand out from the grimy building facades and especially from the open windows. And I don’t know what I feel or what I want to feel. I don’t know what to think or where I am.