Category Archives: Quotes

Hegel Contra Biblical Literalism

“For the theologians say that we ought to hold exclusively to the Bible. […] Theologians, however, they are not; such an attitude has nothing of a scientific, theological character. But just as soon as religion is no longer simply the reading and repetition of passages, as soon as what is called explanation or interpretation begins, as soon as an attempt is made by inference and exegesis to find out the meaning of the words in the Bible, then we embark upon the process of reasoning, reflection, thinking; and the question then becomes how we should exercise this process of thinking, and whether our thinking is correct or not. It helps not at all to say that one’s thoughts are based on the Bible.”

-Hegel, The 1827 Lectures on the Philosophy of Religion

Why Anti-Oedipus is Worth Reading even if you do not reach “Total” Understanding (of it)

Ortus Memoria

Because of awesome quotes like these. All but one come from the fourth section “Introducing Schizoanalysis;” if it was not the most elucidating section, I certainly thought it was the most fun. All quotes are from Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. by Robert Hurley, Mark Seem, and Helen R. Lane (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1998).

All the cynical tactics of bad conscience…arrive at a definition of civilized European man: the hypnosis and the reign of images, the torpor they spread; the hatred of life and of all that is free, of all that passes and flows; the universal effusion of the death instinct; depression and guilt used as a means of contagion, the kiss of the Vampire: aren’t you ashamed to be happy? follow my eample, I won’t let go before you say, “It’s my fault,” O ignoble contagion of the depressives…

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Jacques Derrida on Atheism

Samuel Adams: Catholics promote “Anarchy and Confusion”

I was recently thumbing around the internet, when I fell upon this little gem. Taken from his 1772 report to the Boston Town Meeting “The Rights of the Colonists,” this short passage argues for the necessity of religious freedom as a human right, unless you’re Catholic.

In regard to religion, mutual toleration in the different professions thereof is what all good and candid minds in all ages have ever practised, and, both by precept and example, inculcated on mankind. And it is now generally agreed among Christians that this spirit of toleration, in the fullest extent consistent with the being of civil society, is the chief characteristical mark of the Church. Insomuch that Mr. Locke has asserted and proved, beyond the possibility of contradiction on any solid ground, that such toleration ought to be extended to all whose doctrines are not subversive of society. The only sects which he thinks ought to be, and which by all wise laws are excluded from such toleration, are those who teach doctrines subversive of the civil government under which they live. The Roman Catholics or Papists are excluded by reason of such doctrines as these, that princes excommunicated may be deposed, and those that they call heretics may be destroyed without mercy; besides their recognizing the Pope in so absolute a manner, in subversion of government, by introducing, as far as possible into the states under whose protection they enjoy life, liberty, and property, that solecism in politics, imperium in imperio, leading directly to the worst anarchy and confusion, civil discord, war, and bloodshed.

I couldn’t help but marvel, particularly given the American Catholic hierarchies recent love affair with the most reactionary elements of conservative politics, at the association of Catholicism with “the worst anarchy and confusion.” I have no great commentary on this passage, simply, enjoy.

Berdyaev on Technology

Leon Trotsky: “Why Marxists Oppose Individual Terrorism”

Independent Workers Party of Chicago

In the wake of the terrorist attacks in Boston, we wish to make clear that the revolutionary socialist workers movement – of which we are a part – is now and has always been opposed to the philosophy of terrorism as a means of revolutionary change.  This early essay by the great Bolshevik leader Leon Trotsky is an excellent outline of the revolutionary Marxist attitude towards terrorism.

IWPCHI

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Leon Trotsky
Why Marxists Oppose Individual Terrorism
(November 1911)

Originally published in German in Der Kampf, November 1911.
Originally transcribed for the Philisophy/History Archive, which is now the Philosophy Section of the Marxists’ Internet Archive.
Proofread by Einde O’Callaghan, November 2006.

Our class enemies are in the habit of complaining about our terrorism. What they mean by this is rather unclear. They would like to label all the activities of the proletariat directed against the class enemy’s interests as terrorism. The…

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Merleau-Ponty on Space and the Body

“We grasp external spaces through our bodily situation. A “corporeal” or postural schema gives us a global, practical and implicit notion of the relation between our body and things, and our hold on them. A system of possible movements, or “motor projects” radiates from us to the environment. Our body is not in space like things; it inhabits or haunts space. It implies itself to space like a hand to an instrument and when we wish to move about we do not move the body as we move an object.”

-Maurice Merleau-Ponty, The Visible and Invisible, 5

Augustine and the Cruelty of Peace

“Peace and War had a competition in cruelty; and Peace won the prize.  For the men whom War cut down were bearing arms; Peace slaughtered the defenseless.”

-Saint Augustine


“881 were civilians, including 176 children. Only 41 people who had died had been confirmed as ‘high-value’ terrorist targets”

[Source.]

 

Schelling on the Sublime in Art

“For the difference between a beautiful and a sublime work of art rests only on the fact that where beauty exists the infinite contradiction is resolved in the object itself, whereas where sublimity exists the contradiction is not unified in the object itself but is merely raised to a level at which it involuntarily removes itself in the intuition, which then is as good as if it were removed from the object.”

-Schelling, Deduction of a Universal Organ of Philosophy, or Main Propositions of the Philosophy of Art According to Principles of Transcendental Idealism

Schelling prefigures Marion’s conception of the Saturated Phenomenon by about a century and a half.  In case you didn’t know, all of phenomenology’s best ideas can be found in 19th century German Idealism.

William Blake