Thursday, February 12, 2004

This was advertized above my blog today. Made me larf:

So, for those of you who know of both my blogs, there will be some downtime over at the salon blog ( My usual computer's waiting on a new ethernet card (I'm goin' wireless!), and until then, I'm on one of Brian's computers, and no Salon-blog-acesss for me (^$$%# proprietary software).


For whatever reason, this blogdoesn't get as much attention as it should. I got it so that I could blog from work if need be, but I guess, well, that doesn't happen much. My fear of getting caught outweighs my need to share my deep thoughts with the world.

One of the problems of blogging is (in my case anyway) reining in the ol' attention span. No matter how great I think my ideas are, or how excited I am to explore them, it seems like once I get into writing mode, the call of the wild internet makes me stray away from my own ideas, and into other people's. Or at least the hopes that I might find some. In the absence of recently-updated other-people's-blogs, I usually end up wandering aimlessly, reading anything that crosses my path. There's a certain magesty to the desperate way I avoid my own thoughts. Like I'm cursed to wander the earth like Cain until I get my BA.

But I digress.

Having left this blog alone for a bit, I hadn't read my own postings for a while - and was frustrated and a bit inspired by the post I mad about Sartre back in November.

Having read through No Exit since then (the full text is available online, if'n you care to look), I feel like a common theme in both Sartre and Dante is the need for movement from pure self awareness to a more social awareness.

I'm not sure if I've quoted this in this or any other blog before, but this quotation has become one of my favorite mantra's:

"The starting point for critical elaboration is the consciousness of what one really is, and is knowing thyself as the product of the historical process to date which has deposited in you an infinity of traces without leaving an inventory."

Just as we cannot understand the current state of the world if we do not know its history, we cannot understand ourselves unless we connect with the world as it is, and our place within it.

For Dante, hell was the inability to look beyond oneself. For Sartre the tragedy of hell lay in the inabilty to see ouselves outside the reflection we can see in other's eyes. Hell is other people, sure, but it doesn't have to be.

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