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Home | 2016 | October

Quote and image of the month 10.2016

Quote of the month

The loneliness of the automat, 1641

I shall now close my eyes, I shall plug my ears, I shall close all my senses, I shall even erase from my thoughts all images of physical things – or at least, because this can hardly be done, I shall consider them as being empty and false. Thus conversing only with myself and closely examining my nature, I shall try to obtain step by step a deeper understanding of myself.

Fourteen paragraphs of conversing later, our thinker is left with nothing but the intolerable loneliness of the thinking 'I', the cogito ergo sum. He invents a friend, God, someone to talk to:

But what am I to conclude from it all in the end? … it follows of necessity that I am not alone in the world, but that there is another being which exists. …

René Descartes (1596-1650), Meditations on First Philosophy, 1641, 'Meditation III'.

Image of the month

Edward Hopper, Automat, 1927

Edward Hopper (1882-1967), Automat, 1927. Image: Des Moines Art Center.