Tuesday 2 October 2012

The modern condition in a nutshell - Pascal


The only things that consoles us for our miseries is diversion.

And yet it is the greatest of our miseries.


For it is diversion above all which prevents us from thinking about ourselves and leads us imperceptibly to our destruction.


But for diversion we should be bored, and boredom would drive us to seek some more solid means of escape.


But diversion passes our time and brings us insensibly to our death.


Blaise Pascal, Pensees - translated and arranged by A.J Krailsheimer. This is AJK number 414, page 148 in the Penguin edition. I have re-punctuated, re-paragraphed, in a few places replaced the word 'it' with 'diversion' for the sake of clarity, and replaced a second usage of 'imperceptibl'y with 'insensibly' for the punchline.



Anonymous said...

Thank you for bringing this to my attention. Thank you also for pointing out the biography of Father Seraphin Rose.

Bruce Charlton said...

You're welcome.