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Goodreads helps you follow your favorite authors. Be the first to learn about new releases! Follow Author. Emil M. The others, having no reason to live, why would they have any to die? Then we could renounce culture and ambitions; we would lose everything and gain nothing; for what is there to be gained from this world? I no longer want to be, nor can still be, a man.

What should I do? Work for a social and political system, make a girl miserable? Hunt for weaknesses in philosophical systems, fight for moral and esthetic ideals?

I renounce my humanity even though I may find myself alone. But am I not already alone in this world from which I no longer expect anything?

Hours and hours without doing anything. Was boredom unknown to them? This is indeed a question raised by a human, a busy ape. Far from fleeing monotony, animals crave it, and what they most dread is to see it end.

For it ends, only to be replaced by fear, the cause of all activity. Inaction is divine; yet it is against inaction that man has rebelled. Man alone, in nature, is incapable of enduring monotony, man alone wants something to happen at all costs — something, anything Thereby he shows himself unworthy of his ancestor: the need for novelty is the characteristic of an alienated gorilla.

Cioran, The Trouble with Being Born. The answer probably lies in the irrational character of life which maintains itself without reason. But my tears would drown the world, as my inner fire would reduce it to ashes. Although I feel that my tragedy is the greatest in history—greater than the fall of empires—I am nevertheless aware of my total insignificance. I am absolutely persuaded that I am nothing in this universe; yet I feel that mine is the only real existence.

It is all the same whether you achieve something or not, have faith or not, just as it is all the same whether you cry or remain silent. I have glimpsed this state, and have often attained it, without managing to remain there: I am too weak for such happiness. True thinking resembles a demon who muddies the spring of life or a sickness which corrupts its roots.

To think all the time, to raise questions, to doubt your own destiny, to feel the weariness of living, to be worn out to the point of exhaustion by thoughts and life, to leave behind you, as symbols of your life's drama, a trail of smoke and blood - all this means you are so unhappy that reflection and thinking appear as a curse causing a violent revulsion in you. All Quotes Add A Quote. Books by Emil M. On the Heights of Despair 4, ratings. The Trouble with Being Born 3, ratings.

A Short History of Decay 3, ratings. Videos About This Author. More videos Welcome back. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account.


Emil Cioran

For the next step, you'll be taken to a website to complete the donation and enter your billing information. You'll then be redirected back to LARB. To take advantage of all LARB has to offer, please create an account or log in before joining The Los Angeles Review of Books is a c 3 nonprofit. Donate to support new essays, interviews, reviews, literary curation, our groundbreaking publishing workshop, free events series, newly anointed publishing wing, and the dedicated team that makes it possible. FOR SOME, he was one of the most subversive thinkers of his time — a 20th-century Nietzsche, only darker and with a better sense of humor. Many, especially in his youth, thought him to be a dangerous lunatic.



His work has been noted for its pervasive philosophical pessimism , and frequently engages with issues of suffering, decay, and nihilism. His father, Emilian Cioran, was an Orthodox priest. Cioran had a good command of German. He became an agnostic , taking as an axiom "the inconvenience of existence". While at the University, he was influenced by Georg Simmel , Ludwig Klages and Martin Heidegger , but also by the Russian philosopher Lev Shestov , whose contribution to Cioran's central system of thought was the belief that life is arbitrary.



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