Book//mark – The Book of Delusions | Emil Cioran, 1936

The Book of Delusions Emil Cioran 1936

The Book of Delusions (Cartea amăgirilor), 1936 / Emil Cioran in Romania, before 1947

“To suffer is how to be active without doing anything.”

“To suffer is the great modality of taking the world seriously.”

“Time is heavy sometimes; imagine how heavy eternity must be.”

“All the concessions we make to Eros are holes in our desire for the absolute.”

“Nostalgia, more than anything, gives us the shudder of our own imperfection.”

“Everything is unutterable and everything wants to talk. Sonorous apocalypse.”

“The greater the thirst for life is for some souls, the more solitude swallows them…”

“Freedom is too immense, and we are too small. Who has deserved it? Man loves freedom but fears it.”

“In a world full of disappearing people, who would be God ? The one who holds the last hope.”

“Only optimists commit suicide, optimists who no longer succeed at being optimists. The others, having no reason to live, why would they have any to die?”

“The fact that life has no meaning is a reason to live –moreover, the only one.”

“Rules for defeating pessimism, but not suffering:

  1. Accompany the most delicate thrill of the soul with a willful strain (of the muscles)
  2. Be sober in the intimate dissolutions
  3. Monitor your musical fascination
  4. Be sad, but with method
  5. Read the Bible with political interest; read the poets for testing your resistance
  6. Use nostalgia for deeds and thoughts, abduct their soul
  7. Create an exterior center: a country, a landscape, tie your thoughts to space
  8. Maintain an artificial hate to someone: a peoples, a city, an individual, a memory
  9. Love the force after each dream: be brutal after everything which is pure, sublime
  10. Learn a tip of the soul: conquer the soul states
  11. Don’t learn anything from human: only nature is the mistress of doubts
  12. Cancel your fear by moving: every time you sit, things are quiet and nothing calls us
  13. Make a system out of delusions”

“I understood the non-sense of every gesture, every effort…I wanted to defend myself against all men, react against their madness, discover its source; I listened and I saw – and I was afraid: afraid of acting for the same reasons or for any reason, of believing in the same phantoms or in any other phantom, of letting myself be intoxicated in the same way or in any other way; afraid, finally, of sharing a common delirium and expiring in a crowd of ecstasies…It is troubling to think that…all sink into lying because they do not suspect the equivalence, in nullity, of pleasures and of truths.“

“My memories, with images by Botticelli and harmonies by Mozart, of returning from a far away place, of the time when my tears were acts of worshiping the sun… All these melancholies awaken my angelic places of the past, solitary and silent scenery, the scenery of grand recollections and grand forgetfulness; all my melancholies bring my distances closer to one another; they ravish deeply all the springs of my childhood and bring to light the uncertainty of some distant memory or a regret about a world whose tears are like mirrors of the soul. Melancholic confessions: they are the only proof of the lost paradise.”

Emil Cioran, The Book of Delusions (Cartea amăgirilor), 1936

Persons [ ] Existence | Emil Cioran, 1973
Thoughts on { Insomnia | An interview with Emil Cioran, 1984

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