Monthly Archives: August 2013

On all sides I behold nothing but infinity

I see the terrifying immensity of the universe which surrounds me, and find myself limited to one corner of this vast expanse, without knowing why I am set down here rather than elsewhere, nor why the brief period appointed for my life is assigned to me at this moment rather than another in all the eternity that has gone before and will come after me. On all sides I behold nothing but infinity, in which I am a mere atom, a mere passing shadow that returns no more. All I know is that I must soon die, but what I understand least of all is this very death which I cannot escape.

As I know not whence I come, so I know not whither I go. I only know that on leaving this world I fall for ever into nothingness or into the hands of a wrathful God, without knowing to which of these two states I shall be everlastingly consigned. Such is my condition, full of weakness and uncertainty.

—    Blaise Pascal, Pensées (via here)

Always this double movement, at once too far inside and too far outside. But inside and outside what? As if one’s eyeballs turned inwards and outwards at the same time.

— Frenet

A waking, or half-awake dream. I lived in a room occupied by a man who had just died. I had the strength to look in the mirror. No, hardly strength. Did it crowd me or make room for me, the mirror? I made a hole in the door with a table leg through which they deigned to feed me. I had the cunning to grab their hands, to force them to touch my belly, my sex. Sometimes they enjoyed it. Sometimes I did. By listening I learned their methods and found my own. I learned to murmur back. I pressed my face against the mirror: my cheek, the back of my head, my hands.

— Frenet