Notebook - 2
This is how I warm up for writing - by writing. But here, by hand, writing as play. I read Zaretsky's book on Simone Weil last night. She's inspiring, and inspiring is an insult. Pure and implacable, she was. She was a philosopher.
In a crooked world, I will tell the truth. That's all. I will just tell the fucking truth. I will call out bullshit. I will celebrate what's worth celebrating. I will rip into the cynical careerists. I will simply tell the truth. No accommodations, no bending and bowing. I will tell the truth about everything.
Philosophy as a way of life: today, I know what the task is. It's precisely to inhabit the uncertainty and live from there. It is to live without wisdom - and with a passionate commitment to wisdom.
How? Simone Weil: attention. To fully receive the world as something that is not you.
The solipsism at the heart of mindfulness - everything is to be noticed in terms of how it impinges on your consciousness.
The world is to be understood in terms of the death of God and our responses to that. In terms of the destruction of old certainties & the chaos of the result.
Let us live the opposite. We have to fully live the despair of Dostoevsky and Nietzsche. When we do, we realise, you can't answer that despair by saying, tidy your fucking bed.
People, me - we need something outside ourselves. It doesn't have to be bigger. But it does have to be outside. Beauty, goodness, God - these things matter.
Yes, we cannot believe in them the way we used to - neither in the way we reach those beliefs nor in their content. We cannot be certain of them. We must truly accept: we can be mistaken.
But we cannot simply deny them! We cannot deny our experience of love and divinity and beauty and of a transcendent world.
But we cannot slip into woolly spiritual thinking either! We cannot deny the products of our reason, the power and success of our thought.
We have to live where we are - suspended between the two unacceptable certainties.
We have to be unflinchingly honest about where we are and we have to live there.