ولـما رأيتُ الجهلَ في الناسِ فاشياً …. تـجاهلْتُ حـتى ظُـنَّ أنّيَ جاهل
فوا عَجَبا كم يدّعي الفضْل ناقصٌ …. ووا أسَفا كم يُظْهِرُ النّقصَ فاضل
أبوالعلاء المعرى

(Source: startimes.com)

Pendant que les pauvres gens thésaurisent et leur force et la science pour porter sans effort le poids d’une puissance qui les fuit, les intrigants riches de mots et depourvus d’idées vont et viennent, surprennent les sots, et se logent dans la confiance des demi-niais; les uns étudient, les autres marchent, les uns sont modestes, les autres hardis; l’homme de génie tait son orgueil, l’intrigant arbore le sien, il doit arriver nécessairement.
Honoré de Balzac - La Peau de chagrin
Never underestimate the joy people derive from hearing something they already know.
Enrico Fermi

mais n’abandonne pas..

Quand les choses vont vraiment mal, comme
elles savent si bien le faire quelques fois.
Quand la route sur laquelle tu chemines
Péniblement semble s’achever au sommet d’une colline.
Quand les fonds sont bas et que les dettes culminent.
Tu voudrais sourire et tu dois pousser des soupirs.
Quand le souci te pousse dans la déprime.
Repose-toi si tu veux, mais n’abandonne pas.
La vie est si étrange avec ses revers et ses
Détours comme chacun de nous a pu
L’apprendre un jour
Et beaucoup qui ont été abattus par un échec
Auraient pu réussir s’ils avaient persévéré.
N’abandonne pas, même si tout te semble aller
Lentement car un souffle peut apporter la réussite.
Le succès n’est que le revers de l’échec, et tu ne
Peux jamais savoir à quelle distance se trouve
Le but qui te semble lointain.
Aussi, continue ta lutte au plus fort du combat,
Car c’est quand tout te semble perdu
Que tu ne dois pas abandonner

Mouloud Mammeri

How To Find ‘The Zone’ And Stay There

1. Let go of everything.
2. Choose a time and place to work in carefully.
3. Get the junk out by writing it out
4. Stop writing and breathe. You’re there.

(Source: hongkiat.com)

Fallacy man!

(Source: Slate)

When You’re Feeling Self-Doubt & a Lack of Motivation

Remember:
1. Stop being so self-centered: The world doesn’t depend on you.
2. Loosen your identity: You’re not perfect.
3. This day counts: And you won’t get it back.
4. Create movement: Start small. And keep moving.

(Source: zenhabits.net)

Is the internet bad?

Zeynep Tufekci wrote a nice (and somewhat lengthy) piece on medium about the pressing issues of privacy, information and oppressive governments in the age of the internet. The arguments boils down to this: It’s not 1984. It’s not the Panopticon. It’s worse. And it’s barely starting. We need to update our nightmares.

The correct metaphor, she argues, is to be found in the work of Gramsci.. unfortunatly without arguing in more depth:

" the Italian writer, politician, and philosopher Antonio Gramsci, who was jailed by Mussolini and did most of his work while locked up. Gramsci understood that the most powerful means of control available to a modern capitalist state is not coercion or imprisonment, but the ability to shape the world of ideas. The essence of some of Gramsci’s arguments can be seen in another great dystopian novel of the 20th century. In Brave New World, Aldous Huxley envisions a state that eschews existential terror in favor of a drug, soma, that keeps its citizens happy and pliant."

How to shape the world of ideas? Tailored ads.

"This is why the state-of-the-art method for shaping ideas is not to coerce overtly but to seduce covertly, from a foundation of knowledge. […] Companies want to use this power to make us buy products. For political parties, the aim is to attract support based on a tailored presentation of that party’s politicians and policies. Both want us to click, willingly, on a choice that has been engineered for us. Diplomats call this soft power. It may be soft but it’s not weak. It doesn’t generate resistance, as totalitarianism does, so it’s actually stronger.

Internet technology lets us peel away layers of divisions and distractions and interact with one another, human to human. At the same time, the powerful are looking at those very interactions, and using them to figure out how to make us more compliant. That’s why surveillance, in the service of seduction, may turn out to be more powerful and scary than the nightmares of Nineteen Eighty-Four.”

First 3D sonography of the stimulated clitoris by Dr. Odile Buisson and Dr. Pierre Foldès, 2009.

(Source: blog.museumofsex.com)

Marcello: I’m going to build a life that’s normal. I’m marrying a petty bourgeoise.
Confessor: Then she must be a fine girl.
Marcello: Mediocre. A mound of petty ideas. Full of petty ambitions. She’s all bed and kitchen.

Italo: A normal man? For me, a normal man is one who turns his head to see a beautiful woman’s bottom. The point is not just to turn your head. There are five or six reasons. And he is glad to find people who are like him, his equals. That’s why he likes crowded beaches, football, the bar downtown…
Marcello: At Piazza Venice.
Italo: He likes people similar to himself and does not trust those who are different. That’s why a normal man is a true brother, a true citizen, a true patriot…
Marcello: A true fascist.

Giulia: What are you going to do now?
Marcello: The same as everyone else who thought like me. When there are so many of us, there’s no risk.

Giulia: What was Marcello like as a student?
Professor Quadri: Serious. Too serious!
Giulia: But you can’t be too serious.
Professor Quadri: Really serious people are never serious.

Ghardaia and Crépuscule sur la ghardaia.
Pierre Reymond.

(Source: pierre-reymond.fr)

The Great Debate

The discovery of the Americas presented some difficult problems for the Christian Europeans: the people who lived in the Americas, often called Indians, did not appear in either their sacred books nor in the writings of the Greek historians. Initially, there was a great debate over whether or not American Indians were human. In order to be considered human, from a Christian European perspective, the Indians had to have the ability to reason and a soul which could be saved from eternal damnation through conversion to Christianity. Once the Pope had declared that Indians were human, the Spanish, unlike some of the other European powers, took seriously the humanity of native people. They saw them as a part of the community of God. They recognized that they had certain rights. During the 16th century the Spanish engaged in a number of intellectual debates about the Indians which culminated in the 1550-1551 debate in Valladolid.

Continue reading.