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TSE  January 2002

TSE January 2002

Subject:

Re: Burnt Norton V

From:

João Vergílio Gallerani Cuter <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sun, 13 Jan 2002 14:25:26 -0200

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Dear JP,

I have to think over everything you said, but there is a preliminary =
point that I'd like to stress. I agree with you that the Absolute is =
supernatural. "Nature" is just another word for time and its contents. =
An atemporal pattern lies outside Nature, although Nature itself is =
"made of" partial and imperfect manifestations of this pattern. Even so, =
I think that Eliot's Love (here understood as a basic cosmic principle, =
and not as an individual subjective attempt of "sympathising" with this =
principle) is much more akin to the Tao than to the Christian God. =
Eliot's intentions could be Christian, but I think his results are not. =
Jesus Christ in the Quartets is no more than a good metaphor, a good =
"hint". Any "intersection" between the temporal and the atemporal order =
would do, and this is what any mystical experience is supposed to bring =
about.

Jo=E3o
  ----- Original Message -----=20
  From: Earls, JP=20
  To: [log in to unmask]
  Sent: Saturday, January 12, 2002 3:09 PM
  Subject: RE: Burnt Norton V


  Dear Jo=E3o,

  Thanks much for some beautiful and illuminating writing on FQ.  Where =
I sense a disagreement between our views may be in whether E. is =
proposing a natural or supernatural outcome.  You call it an "atemporal =
pattern." =20

  Can we say that FQ poses one ultimate question:  How does one move =
from desire to love?  E. exposes the various failures of his own =
life--career, family (father and mother), romantic love, perhaps even =
mysticism, then proposes that it is precisely by embracing the =
consequent suffering of these failures that he has passed/is =
passing/will finally pass from desire through indifference to the =
detachment that makes love possible.  Suffering, then, becomes a good =
that purifies desire, and that will be inextricably united to desire =
because it is through suffering that desire has become love--"the fire =
and the rose are one." Of course, this implies that the suffering will =
never be done away with.  The final pattern gives both the suffering and =
the ecstasy their place, forever together in "the crowned knot of fire." =
 The passion of Christ is the center of the pattern; "passion" in both =
senses as consuming love and consuming suffering.  As E. develops this =
thought of the coming to love by means of suffering throughout FQ, he =
weaves it together with history.  His personal insertion into this =
pattern can never be complete until the entire process of history is =
finished.  Note the end to DS V:
  For most of us, this is the aim
  Never here to be realised;
  Who are only undefeated
  Because we have gone on trying;
  We, content at the last
  If our temporal reversion nourish
  (Not too far from the yew-tree)
  The life of significant soil.

  In other words, until the pattern is fully realized, he is "content" =
if his efforts, feeble as they have been,  have enriched the life of the =
world.  The mention of the yew-tree (standard, I am told, in Anglican =
graveyards) I interpret as indicating his wish that his contribution be =
known as both English and Christian.

  All of the V's end with a movement toward realization beyond time.  In =
EC it is a movement into the ocean of indifference with its "dark cold" =
and "empty desolation."  In BN the movement toward eternity is oblique: =
love looks like desire when it is experienced "in the aspect of time, / =
Caught between un-being and being."  This indicates that in eternity =
love is clearly itself.  For these reasons, I think he aiming at the =
supernatural outcome, not an atemporal natural one.

  This may be a fine point.  I suspect that E. is expecting to be =
understood by his audience as Christian, at the same time that he is =
speaking from a Hegelian view of history that would serve as well for an =
Eastern understanding.  Is the Absolute natural or supernatural?

  JP

    -----Original Message-----
    From: Jo=E3o Verg=EDlio Gallerani Cuter =
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]
    Sent: Saturday, January 12, 2002 12:35 AM
    To: [log in to unmask]
    Subject: Burnt Norton V


    JP,


    Thanks a lot for your comments.=20
    I think the first point to be considered is that not only poetry is =
incapable of endurance. This is a problem concerning language as a whole =
- be it poetical or not. Language is one of the many "appearances" =
inside the flow of time. Meanings are produced, understood, interpreted, =
reinterpreted and finally forgotten. In a sense, a meaning cannot be =
remembered, since it will change continuously from time to time, and it =
cannot be comunicated either, since it will be different from mind to =
mind (the "bowl of rose-leaves"):
      Words move, music moves
      Only in time; but that which is only living=20
      Can only die.
    After speech, words fall into the darkness of silence. They are =
swallowed by the river of time. That's why they always fail to capture =
the atemporal pattern of human existence - the pattern that will give =
sense to human experience as a whole. Words "try hard", no doubt:
      Words strain,
      crack and sometimes break, under the burden,
      under the tension, slip, slide, perish,
      Decay with imprecision, will not stay in place,
      Will not stay still.
    Only direct contact with this atemporal pattern can perform the =
task. Words cannot take us there. Quite the contrary. It is only by =
getting there that we can give full meaning to our faltering words
      Only by the form, the pattern,
      Can words or music reach
      The stillness
    The key to the Quartets, I think, lies in establishing a reasonable =
interpretation to this atemporal "pattern", and I agree with you that it =
must be looked for in the "agony and ecstasy", "life and death", =
"perishing and coming-to-be" pattern of Nature (I capitalize to make the =
word encompass not only dogs, oak-trees and stones, but our mental and =
social life as well). Every single instant of time is a window open to =
this pattern: any "movement" must be seen as a "detail of the pattern", =
as he says.=20
    Now I am convinced that this abstract reflection on Nature is linked =
to a very concrete conception of what is to be considered as "true =
happiness", as opposed to false, illusory happiness in life. It has to =
do with the opposition between Desire and Love (I capitalize to remember =
that these words have both a personal and a "cosmical" (arghhhh) sense =
in the Quartets):
      Desire itself is movement
      Not in itself desirable;
      etc.
    But I have spoken too much today. It is 4:30 in Brazil, and I must =
go to bed.
    Have a nice day.

    Jo=E3o


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Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN">
<HTML><HEAD>
<META http-equiv=3DContent-Type content=3D"text/html; =
charset=3Diso-8859-1">
<META content=3D"MSHTML 5.50.4134.100" name=3DGENERATOR>
<STYLE></STYLE>
</HEAD>
<BODY bgColor=3D#ffffff>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Dear JP,</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>I have to think over everything you =
said, but there=20
is a preliminary point that I'd like to stress. I agree with you that =
the=20
Absolute is supernatural. "Nature" is just another word for time and its =

contents. An atemporal pattern lies outside Nature, although Nature =
itself is=20
"made of" partial and imperfect manifestations of this pattern. Even so, =
I think=20
that Eliot's Love (here understood as a basic cosmic principle, and not =
as an=20
individual subjective attempt of&nbsp;"sympathising" with this =
principle) is=20
much more akin to the Tao than to the Christian God. Eliot's intentions =
could be=20
Christian, but&nbsp;I think his results are not. Jesus Christ in the =
Quartets is=20
no more than a good metaphor, a good "hint". Any "intersection" between =
the=20
temporal and the atemporal order would do, and this is what any mystical =

experience is supposed to bring about.</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Jo=E3o</FONT></DIV>
<BLOCKQUOTE dir=3Dltr=20
style=3D"PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 5px; MARGIN-LEFT: 5px; =
BORDER-LEFT: #000000 2px solid; MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px">
  <DIV style=3D"FONT: 10pt arial">----- Original Message ----- </DIV>
  <DIV=20
  style=3D"BACKGROUND: #e4e4e4; FONT: 10pt arial; font-color: =
black"><B>From:</B>=20
  <A [log in to unmask] href=3D"mailto:[log in to unmask]">Earls, =
JP</A>=20
</DIV>
  <DIV style=3D"FONT: 10pt arial"><B>To:</B> <A =
[log in to unmask]
  href=3D"mailto:[log in to unmask]">[log in to unmask]</A> </DIV>
  <DIV style=3D"FONT: 10pt arial"><B>Sent:</B> Saturday, January 12, =
2002 3:09=20
  PM</DIV>
  <DIV style=3D"FONT: 10pt arial"><B>Subject:</B> RE: Burnt Norton =
V</DIV>
  <DIV><BR></DIV>
  <DIV><FONT color=3D#0000ff><SPAN class=3D844425215-12012002><FONT =
face=3DArial=20
  size=3D2><STRONG>Dear <FONT color=3D#000080><FONT=20
  =
color=3D#0000ff>Jo=E3o</FONT></FONT>,</STRONG></FONT></SPAN></FONT></DIV>=

  <DIV><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff size=3D2><SPAN=20
  class=3D844425215-12012002></SPAN></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV>
  <DIV><STRONG><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff size=3D2><SPAN=20
  class=3D844425215-12012002>Thanks much for some beautiful and =
illuminating=20
  writing on FQ.&nbsp; Where I sense a disagreement between our =
views&nbsp;may=20
  be in&nbsp;whether E. is proposing a natural or supernatural =
outcome.&nbsp;=20
  You call it an "atemporal pattern."&nbsp; =
</SPAN></FONT></STRONG></DIV>
  <DIV><STRONG><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff size=3D2><SPAN=20
  class=3D844425215-12012002></SPAN></FONT></STRONG>&nbsp;</DIV>
  <DIV><STRONG><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff size=3D2><SPAN=20
  class=3D844425215-12012002>Can we say that FQ poses one ultimate =
question:&nbsp;=20
  How does one move from desire to love?&nbsp; E. exposes the various =
failures=20
  of his own life--career, family (father and mother), romantic love, =
perhaps=20
  even mysticism, then proposes that it is precisely by embracing the =
consequent=20
  suffering of these failures that&nbsp;he has passed/is passing/will =
finally=20
  pass&nbsp;from desire through indifference to the detachment that =
makes love=20
  possible.&nbsp; Suffering, then, becomes a good that purifies desire, =
and that=20
  will be inextricably united to desire because it is through suffering =
that=20
  desire has become love--"the fire and the rose&nbsp;are one." Of =
course, this=20
  implies that the suffering&nbsp;will never be done away with.&nbsp; =
The final=20
  pattern gives both the suffering and the ecstasy their place, forever =
together=20
  in "the crowned knot of fire."&nbsp; The passion of Christ is the =
center of=20
  the pattern; "passion" in both senses as consuming love and consuming=20
  suffering.&nbsp; As E. develops this thought of the coming to =
love&nbsp;by=20
  means of suffering throughout FQ, he weaves it together with =
history.&nbsp;=20
  His personal insertion into this pattern can never be complete until =
the=20
  entire process of history is finished.&nbsp; Note the end to DS=20
  V:</SPAN></FONT></STRONG></DIV>
  <DIV><STRONG><SPAN class=3D844425215-12012002>
  <P><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff size=3D2>For most of us, this is =
the=20
  aim<BR>Never here to be realised;<BR></FONT><FONT face=3DArial><FONT=20
  color=3D#0000ff><FONT size=3D2><SPAN =
class=3D844425215-12012002>W</SPAN>ho are only=20
  undefeated<BR></FONT></FONT></FONT><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff=20
  size=3D2>Because we have gone on trying;<BR></FONT><FONT face=3DArial=20
  color=3D#0000ff size=3D2>We, content at the last<BR></FONT><FONT =
face=3DArial=20
  color=3D#0000ff size=3D2>If our temporal reversion =
nourish<BR></FONT><FONT=20
  face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff size=3D2>(Not too far from the=20
  yew-tree)<BR></FONT><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff size=3D2>The =
life of=20
  significant soil.</FONT></P>
  <P><SPAN class=3D844425215-12012002><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff =
size=3D2>In=20
  other words, until the pattern is fully realized, he is "content" if =
his=20
  efforts, feeble as they have been, &nbsp;have enriched the life of the =

  world.&nbsp; The mention of the yew-tree (standard, I am told, in =
Anglican=20
  graveyards) I interpret as indicating&nbsp;his wish that his=20
  contribution&nbsp;be known as both English and =
Christian.</FONT></SPAN></P>
  <P><SPAN class=3D844425215-12012002><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff =
size=3D2>All of=20
  the V's end with a movement toward realization beyond time.&nbsp; In =
EC it is=20
  a movement into the ocean of indifference with its "dark cold" and =
"empty=20
  desolation."&nbsp; In BN&nbsp;the movement toward eternity&nbsp;is =
oblique:=20
  love looks like desire when it is experienced </FONT></SPAN><SPAN=20
  class=3D844425215-12012002><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff =
size=3D2>"in the aspect=20
  of time, / Caught between un-being and being."&nbsp; This indicates =
that in=20
  eternity&nbsp;love is clearly itself.&nbsp; For these reasons, I think =
he=20
  aiming at the supernatural outcome, not an atemporal&nbsp;natural=20
  one.</FONT></SPAN></P>
  <P><SPAN class=3D844425215-12012002><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff =
size=3D2>This=20
  may be a fine point.&nbsp; I suspect that E. is expecting to be =
understood by=20
  his audience as Christian, at the same time that he is speaking from a =

  Hegelian view of history that would serve as well for an Eastern=20
  understanding.&nbsp; Is the Absolute natural or=20
supernatural?</FONT></SPAN></P>
  <P><SPAN class=3D844425215-12012002><FONT face=3DArial color=3D#0000ff =

  size=3D2>JP</FONT></SPAN></P></SPAN></STRONG></DIV>
  <BLOCKQUOTE dir=3Dltr style=3D"MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px">
    <DIV class=3DOutlookMessageHeader dir=3Dltr align=3Dleft><FONT =
face=3DTahoma=20
    size=3D2>-----Original Message-----<BR><B>From:</B> Jo=E3o =
Verg=EDlio Gallerani=20
    Cuter [mailto:[log in to unmask]]<BR><B>Sent:</B> Saturday, =
January=20
    12, 2002 12:35 AM<BR><B>To:</B> =
[log in to unmask]<BR><B>Subject:</B> Burnt=20
    Norton V<BR><BR></FONT></DIV>
    <DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>JP,</FONT></DIV>
    <DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV>
    <DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV>
    <DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Thanks a lot for your comments. =
</FONT></DIV>
    <DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>I think the first point to be =
considered is=20
    that not only poetry is incapable of endurance. This is a problem =
concerning=20
    language as a whole - be it poetical or not. </FONT><FONT =
face=3DArial=20
    size=3D2>Language is one of the many "appearances" inside the flow=20
    of&nbsp;time. Meanings are produced, understood, interpreted, =
reinterpreted=20
    and finally forgotten. In a sense, a meaning cannot be remembered, =
since it=20
    will change continuously from time to time, and it&nbsp;cannot be=20
    comunicated either, since it will be different from mind to mind =
(the "bowl=20
    of rose-leaves"):</FONT></DIV>
    <BLOCKQUOTE dir=3Dltr style=3D"MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px">
      <DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Words move, music =
moves</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Only in time; but that which is =
only living=20
      </FONT></DIV>
      <DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Can only =
die.</FONT></DIV></BLOCKQUOTE>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>After speech, words fall =
into the=20
    darkness of silence. They are swallowed by the river of time. =
</FONT><FONT=20
    face=3DArial size=3D2>That's why they always fail to capture the =
atemporal=20
    pattern of human existence&nbsp;- the pattern that =
will&nbsp;</FONT><FONT=20
    face=3DArial size=3D2>give sense to human experience as a whole. =
Words "try=20
    hard", no doubt:</FONT></DIV>
    <BLOCKQUOTE dir=3Dltr style=3D"MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px">
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Words =
strain,</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>crack and sometimes =
break, under the=20
      burden,</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>under the tension, =
slip, slide,=20
      perish,</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Decay with imprecision, =
will not stay=20
      in place,</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Will not stay=20
    still.</FONT></DIV></BLOCKQUOTE>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Only direct contact with =
this atemporal=20
    pattern can perform the task. Words cannot take us there. Quite the=20
    contrary. It is only by getting there that we can give full meaning =
to our=20
    faltering words</FONT></DIV>
    <BLOCKQUOTE dir=3Dltr style=3D"MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px">
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Only by the form, the=20
      pattern,</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Can words or music =
reach</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>The =
stillness</FONT></DIV></BLOCKQUOTE>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>The key to the Quartets, =
I think, lies=20
    in establishing a reasonable interpretation to this atemporal =
"pattern", and=20
    I agree with you that it must be&nbsp;looked for&nbsp;in the "agony =
and=20
    ecstasy", "life and death", "perishing and coming-to-be" pattern of =
Nature=20
    (I capitalize to make the word encompass not only dogs, oak-trees =
and=20
    stones, but our mental and social life as well). Every =
single&nbsp;instant=20
    of time is a window open to this pattern: any "movement" must be =
seen as a=20
    "detail of the pattern", as he says. </FONT></DIV>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Now I am convinced that =
this abstract=20
    reflection on Nature is linked to a very concrete conception of what =
is to=20
    be considered as "true happiness", as opposed to false, illusory =
happiness=20
    in life. It has to do with the opposition between Desire and Love (I =

    capitalize to remember that these words have both a personal and a=20
    "cosmical" (arghhhh) sense in the Quartets):</FONT></DIV>
    <BLOCKQUOTE dir=3Dltr style=3D"MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px">
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Desire itself is=20
movement</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Not in itself =
desirable;</FONT></DIV>
      <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial =
size=3D2>etc.</FONT></DIV></BLOCKQUOTE>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>But I have spoken too =
much today. It is=20
    4:30 in Brazil, and I must go to bed.</FONT></DIV>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Have a nice =
day.</FONT></DIV>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Jo=E3o</FONT></DIV>
    <DIV dir=3Dltr><FONT face=3DArial=20
size=3D2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV></BLOCKQUOTE></BLOCKQUOTE></BODY></HTML>

------=_NextPart_000_001C_01C19C3E.24ECF920--

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