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June 25, 2006

what moves men of genius...

What moves men of genius, or rather, what inspires their work, is not new ideas, but their obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough.

Great men are those who, when their minds have reached full maturity, can still retain some of the warmth in their impressions that is characteristic of youth.

We must be almost beyond ourselves, if we are to achieve all that we are capable of! Happy are they who, like Voltaire and other great men, can reach a state of inspiration on fresh water and a plain diet.

Eugene Delacroix - The Journals

Posted by amin at 12:44 AM

June 21, 2006

w. eugene smith on photography

I frequently have sought out those who were in the least position to speak for themselves. I can comment for them, if I believe in their cause, with a voice they do not possess.

Photography is a small voice, at best, but sometimes one photograph, or a group of them, can lure our sense of awareness.

I would that my photographs might be, not the coverage of a news-event but and indictment of war – the brutal corrupting viciousness of its doing to the minds and bodies of men; and that my photographs might be a powerful emotional catalyst to the reasoning which would help this vile and criminal stupidity from beginning again.

If I can get them to think, get them to feel, get them to see, then I've done about all that I can as a teacher.

W. Eugene Smith

Posted by amin at 3:39 PM

June 19, 2006

art and nothing but art!

Art and nothing but art! It is the great means of making life possible, the great seduction to life, the great stimulant of life.

Art as the redemption of the man of knowledge–of those who see the terrifying and questionable character of existence, who want to see it, the men of tragic knowledge.

Art as the redemption of the man of action–of those who not only see the terrifying and questionable character of existence but live it, want to live it, the tragic war-like men, then hero.

Art as the redemption of the sufferer–as the way to states in which suffering is willed, transfigured, deified, where suffering is a form of great delight.


Posted by amin at 2:08 PM

June 18, 2006

how much truth can a spirit endure, how much truth does a spirit dare?

Philosophy, as I have hitherto understood and lived it, is a voluntary quest for even the cursed and wicked sides of existence. From the long experience I gained from such wondering through ice and desert, I learned to view differently all that had hitherto philosophized: the hidden history of philosophy, the psychology of its great names, came to light for me. "How much truth can a spirit endure, how much truth does a spirit dare?"-this became for me a real standard of value.


Posted by amin at 2:49 AM

June 11, 2006

reflection, imitation, experience

By three methods we may learn wisdom: first, by reflection, which is noblest; second, by imitation, which is the easiest; and third, by experience, which is the bitterest.

The superior man seeks what is right; the inferior one, what is profitable.

When you meet someone better than yourself, turn your thoughts to becoming his equal. When you meet someone not as good as you are, look within and examine your own self.


Posted by amin at 12:19 AM

June 3, 2006

beneath the stars

With ever watchful eyes and bearing scars, visible and invisible, I headed North, full of a hazy notion that life could be lived with dignity, that the personalities of others should not be violated, that men should be able to confront other men without fear or shame, and that if men were lucky in their living on earth they might win some redeeming meaning for their having struggled and suffered here beneath the stars.

Richard Wright - Black Boy

Posted by amin at 10:57 PM