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locke

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« on: April 18, 2013, 05:16:50 pm »
The Thousandfold Thought

Frontispiece:
In pursuing yonder what they have lost, they encounter only the nothing they have.  In order not to lose touch with the everyday dreariness in which, as irremediable realists, they are at home, they adapt the meaning they revel in to the meaninglessness they flee.  The worthless magic is nothing other than the worthless existence it lights up.
   —THEODOR ADORNO, MINIMA MORALIA

All progressions from a higher to a lower order are marked by ruins and mystery and a residue of nameless rage
So. Here are the dead fathers.
   —CORMAC MCCARTHY, BLOOD MERIDIAN

Chapter One: Caraskand
My heart shrivels even as my intellect bristles.  Reasons—I find myself desperate for reasons.  Sometimes I think every word written is written for shame.
   —DRUSAS ACHAMIAN, COMPENDIUM OF THE FIRST HOLY WAR

Chapter Two: Caraskand
I tell you, guilt dwells nowhere but in the eyes of the accuser.  This men know even as they deny it, which is why they so often make murder their absolution.  The truth of crime lies not with the victim but with the witness.
   —HATATIAN, EXHORTATIONS

Chapter Three: Caraskand
If soot stains your tunic, dye it black.  This is vengeance.
   —EKYANNUS I, 44 EPISTLES

Here we find further argument for Gotagga’s supposition that the world is round.  How else could all men stand higher than their brothers?
   —AJENCIS, DISCOURSE ON WAR

Chapter Four: Enathpaneah
Like a stern father, war shames men into hating their childhood games.
   —PROTATHIS, ONE HUNDRED HEAVENS

I returned from that campaign a far different man, or so my mother continuously complained.  “Now only the dead,” she would tell me, “can hope to match your gaze.”
   —TRIAMIS I, JOURNALS AND DIALOGUES

Chapter Five: Joktha
To indulge it is to breed it.  To punish it is to feed it.  Madness knows no bridle but the knife.
   —SCYLVENDI PROVERB

When others speak, I hear naught but the squawking of parrots.  But when I speak, it always seems to be the first time.  Each man is the rule of the other, no matter how mad or vain.
   —HATATIAN, EXHORTATIONS

Chapter Six: Xerash
Of course we make crutches of one another.  Why else would we crawl when we lose our lovers?
   —ONTILLAS, ON THE FOLLY OF MEN

History. Logic. Arithmetic.  These all should be taught by slaves.
   —ANONYMOUS, THE NOBLE HOUSES

Chapter Seven: Joktha
Every woman knows there are only two kinds of men: those who feel and those who pretend.  Always remember, my dear, though only the former can be loved, only the latter can be trusted.  It is passion that blackens eyes, not calculation.
   —ANONYMOUS LETTER

It is far better to outwit Truth than to apprehend it.
   —AINONI PROVERB

Chapter Eight: Xerash
That hope is little more than the premonition of regret.  This is the first lesson of history.
   —CASIDAS, THE ANNALS OF CENEI

To merely recall the Apocalypse is to have survived it.  This is what makes The Sagas, for all their cramped beauty, so monstrous.  Despite their protestations, the poets who authored them do not tremble, even less do they grieve.  They celebrate.
   —DRUSAS ACHAMIAN, COMPENDIUM OF THE FIRST HOLY WAR

Chapter Nine: Joktha
In the skins of elk I pass over grasses.  Rain falls, and I cleanse my face in the sky.  I hear the Horse Prayers spoken, but my lips are far away.  I slip down weed and still twig—into their palms I pool.  Then I am called out and am among them.  In sorrow, I rejoice.
   Pale endless life.  This, I call my own.
   —ANONYMOUS, THE NONMAN CANTICLES

Chapter Ten: Xerash
Souls can no more see the origins of their thought than they can see the backs of their heads or the insides of their entrails.  And since souls cannot differentiate what they cannot see, there is a peculiar sense in which the soul cannot self-differentiate.  So it is always, in a peculiar sense, the same time when they think, the same place where they think, and the same individual who does the thinking.  Like tipping a spiral on its side until only a circle can be seen, the passage of moments always remains now, the carnival of spaces always sojourns here, and the succession of people always becomes me.  The truth is, if the soul could apprehend itself the way it apprehended the world—if it could apprehend its origins—it would see that there is no now, there is no here, and there is no me.  In other words, it would realize that just as there is no circle, there is no soul.
   —MEMGOWA, CELESTIAL APHORISMS

You are fallen from Him like sparks from the flame.  A dark wind blows, and you are soon to flicker out.
   —SONGS 6:33, THE CHRONICLE OF THE TUSK

Chapter Eleven: Holy Amoteu
Of all the Cants, none better illustrates the nature of the soul than the Cants of Compulsion.  According to Zarathinius, the fact that those compelled unerringly think themselves free shows that Volition is one more thing moved in the soul, and not the mover we take it to be.  While few dispute this, the absurdities that follow escape comprehension altogether
   —MEREMNIS, THE ARCANA IMPLICATA

As a miller once told me, when the gears to not meet, they become as teeth. So it is with men and their machinations.
   —ONTILLAS, ON THE FOLLY OF MEN

Chapter Twelve: Holy Amoteu
Death, in the strict sense, cannot be defined, for whatever predicate we, the living, attribute to it necessarily belongs to Life.  This means that Death, as a category, behaves in a manner indistinguishable from the Infinite, and from God.
   —AJENCIS, THE THIRD ANALYTIC OF MEN

One cannot assume the truth of what one declares without presuming the falsity of all incongruous declarations.  Since all men assume the truth of their declarations, this presumption becomes at best ironic and at worst outrageous.  Given the infinity of possible claims, who could be so vain as to think their dismal claims true?  The tragedy, of course, is that we cannot but make declarations.  So it seems we must speak as Gods to converse as Men.
   —HATATIAN, EXHORTATIONS

Chapter Thirteen: Shimeh
What frightens me when I travel is not that so many men possess customs and creeds so different from my own.  Nay, what frightens me is that they think them as natural and as obvious as I think my own.
   —SERATANTAS III, SUMNI MEDITATIONS

A return to a place never seen.  Always is it thus, when we understand what we cannot speak.
   —PROTATHIS, ONE HUNDRED HEAVENS

Chapter Fourteen: Shimeh
Some say I learned dread knowledge that night.  But of this, as with so many other matters, I cannot write for fear of summary execution.
   —DRUSAS ACHAMIAN, COMPENDIUM OF THE FIRST HOLY WAR

Truth and hope are like travelers in contrary directions.  They meet but once in any man’s life.
   —AINONI PROVERB

Chapter Fifteen: Shimeh
If war does not kill the woman in us, it kills the man.
   —TRIAMIS I, JOURNALS AND DIALOGUES

Like so many who undertake arduous journeys, I left a country of wise men and came back to a nation of fools.  Ignorance, like time, brooks no return.
   —SOKWË, TEN SEASONS IN ZEÜM

Chapter Sixteen: Shimeh
Doubt begets understanding, and understanding begets compassion.  Verily, it is conviction that kills
   —PARCIS, THE NEW ANALYTICS

Chapter Seventeen: Shimeh

Faith, they say, is simply hope confused for knowledge.  Why believe when hope alone is enough?
   —CRATIANAS, NILNAMESHI LORE

Ajencis, in the end, argued that ignorance was the only absolute.  According to Parcis, he would tell his students that he knew only that he knew more than when he was an infant.  This comparative assertion was the only nail, he would say, to which one could tie the carpenter-string of knowledge.  This has come down to us as the famed “Ajencian Nail,” and it is the only thing that prevented the Great Kyranean from falling into the tail-chasing scepticism of Nirsolfa, or the embarrassing dogmatism of well-nigh every philosopher and theologian who ever dared scratch ink across parchment.
   But even this metaphor, “nail,” is faulty, a result of what happens when we confuse our notation with what is noted.  Like the numeral “zero” used by the Nilnameshi mathematicians to work such wonders, ignorance is the occluded frame of all discourse, the unseen circumference of our every contention.  Men are forever looking for the one point, the singular fulcrum they can use to dislodge all competing claims.  Ignorance does not give us this.  What it provides, rather, is the possibility of comparison, the assurance that not all claims are equal.  And this, Ajencis would argue, is all that we need.  For so long as we admit our ignorance, we can hope to improve our claims, and so long as we can improve our claims, we can aspire to the Truth, even if only in rank approximation.
   And this is why I mourn my love of the Great Kyranean.  For despite the pull of his wisdom, there are many things of which I am absolutely certain, things that feed the hate which drives this very quill.
   —DRUSAS ACHAMIAN, COMPENDIUM OF THE FIRST HOLY WAR

What Came Before

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« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2013, 04:48:16 pm »
Quote from: Ajokli
Your condensed headers should be stickied

What Came Before

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« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2013, 04:48:23 pm »
Quote from: Madness
They all are. Have been since before he finished posting them.