मेघदूत: "नीचैर्गच्छत्युपरि च दशा चक्रनेमिक्रमेण"

समर्थ शिष्या अक्का : "स्वामीच्या कृपाप्रसादे हे सर्व नश्वर आहे असे समजले. पण या नश्वरात तमाशा बहुत आहे."

G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

Friedrich Nietzsche: “Everybody wants the same, everybody is the same: whoever feels different goes voluntarily into a madhouse.”

Martin Amis: “Gogol is funny, Tolstoy in his merciless clarity is funny, and Dostoyevsky, funnily enough, is very funny indeed; moreover, the final generation of Russian literature, before it was destroyed by Lenin and Stalin, remained emphatically comic — Bunin, Bely, Bulgakov, Zamyatin. The novel is comic because life is comic (until the inevitable tragedy of the fifth act);...”

सदानंद रेगे:
"... पण तुकारामाची गाथा ज्या धुंदीनं आजपर्यंत वाचली जात होती ती धुंदी माझ्याकडे नाहीय. ती मला येऊच शकत नाही याचं कारण स्वभावतःच मी नास्तिक आहे."
".. त्यामुळं आपण त्या दारिद्र्याच्या अनुभवापलीकडे जाऊच शकत नाही. तुम्ही जर अलीकडची सगळी पुस्तके पाहिलीत...तर त्यांच्यामध्ये त्याच्याखेरीज दुसरं काही नाहीच आहे. म्हणजे माणसांच्या नात्यानात्यांतील जी सूक्ष्मता आहे ती क्वचित चितारलेली तुम्हाला दिसेल. कारण हा जो अनुभव आहे... आपले जे अनुभव आहेत ते ढोबळ प्रकारचे आहेत....."

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Justin E.H. Smith: “One should of course take seriously serious efforts to improve society. But when these efforts fail, in whole or in part, it is only humor that offers redemption. So far, human expectations have always been strained, and have always come, give or take a bit, to nothing. In this respect reality itself has the form of a joke, and humor the force of truth.”

विलास सारंग: "… . . 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."

Friday, July 06, 2018

ऑर्वेल दर्शन - पाठीमागून,,,,,Always Ready To Be Horrified By Mankind

Mark Dery, The Daily Beast, June 2015:

"...“Good prose is like a windowpane,” Orwell wrote. But his—and Strunk and White’s—dream of a prose so crystalline it lets us behold the truth of things unmediated, rather than through the glass of language, darkly, is really a religious yearning disguised as writerly wisdom. It’s a dream of time-traveling back to Eden and speaking the Adamic language in which the signifier and the signified, representation and reality are one. The trouble, of course, is that style, whatever its elements, is artifice, and artifice is authenticity’s foe... "

George Orwell:

“... Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. There is always a new tyrant waiting to take over from the old — generally not quite so bad, but still a tyrant. Consequently two viewpoints are always tenable. The one, how can you improve human nature until you have changed the system? The other, what is the use of changing the system before you have improved human nature? They appeal to different individuals, and they probably show a tendency to alternate in point of time.,,"”

Geoffrey Wheatcroft :

“...And yet for all his fame and stature, Orwell remains elusive. For one thing, he is impossible to categorize. He was a great something — but a great what? Scarcely a great novelist: the prewar novels are good but not very good, and even “Animal Farm” and “1984” aren’t great in the sense of “Madame Bovary.” To call him a great journalist, as many have done, means overlooking plenty of mundane (and inaccurate) political commentary. It’s when he turns to such unlikely matters as boys’ comics and vulgar postcards, as well as to his central subject of politics and language, that he enters the realm of deathless literature.

His politics were likewise sui generis. Although he called himself a democratic socialist, and served with a revolutionary-Marxist militia in Spain, he was in many ways an emotional and cultural conservative...”

Thomas E. Ricks, ‘Churchill and Orwell: The Fight For Freedom’, 2017:
“....There are two points to be made here. First, sensitivity to odor is a tic of much of his writing. Second, and more unsettling, it is the smell of humanity that repels him. When he notes the smells of nature, even of the barnyard, it is almost always with approval. In contrast, he is always ready to be horrified by mankind.

Another more repellent thread runs through the book—a kind of quick and casual prejudice against the Jews he encounters. In a coffee shop he sees, “In a corner by himself a Jew, muzzle down in the plate, . . . guiltily eating bacon.” The animallike “muzzle” in that sentence is particularly disturbing. At another point he recounts a tale told by his friend Boris, a former Russian soldier, of being offered the sexual services of a Jewish girl for fifty francs by her father—“A horrible old Jew, with a red beard like Judas Iscariot.” Orwell’s playing with this offhand sort of anti-Semitism appears in some of his other work. It is little consolation that he is an equal opportunity bigot, as when in Down and Out he approvingly quotes the proverb “Trust a snake before a Jew and a Jew before a Greek, but don’t trust an Armenian.”

The fact of the matter is that Orwell was always tin eared about Jews. During World War II, Orwell would write extensively against anti-Semitism, but in the course of doing so he failed to reexamine his own writings of the previous decade. After the war, he had surprisingly little to say about the Holocaust, one of the major events of his time. He remained strongly anti-Zionist throughout his life, but that probably should be seen more in the context of his enduring distaste for nationalism rather than the anti-Semitism of some of his early writings. Even so, his friend the journalist Malcolm Muggeridge would conclude that “he was at heart strongly anti-Semitic.”....”

जॉर्ज ऑरवेल हे माझे अत्यंत आवडते लेखक. मला सर्वात जास्त आवडलेले त्यांचे पुस्तक: "Down and Out in Paris and London", १९३३. त्या पुस्तकाबद्दल मी पूर्वी लिहले आहे. 

त्यांच्या सुंदर, टोकदार, दाणेदार, नेटक्या वगैरे भाषेच्या पलिकडे जाऊन, त्यांच्या मृत्यू नंतर ६८वर्षे  पूर्ण झाल्यावर, २०१८साली, त्यांच्या काही लेखनाबद्दल मनात आलेले विचार.

१. जॉन ग्रे म्हणतात : "Whatever horrors they chronicled, Orwell and (Arthur) Koestler never gave up the hope that humankind could have a better future. It did not occur to them that history might be cyclical, not progressive, with the struggles of earlier eras returning and being played out against a background of increased scientific knowledge and technological power. For all their dystopian forebodings, neither anticipated the 21st-century reality, in which ethnic and religious wars have supplanted secular ideological conflicts, terror has returned to the most advanced societies and empire is being reinvented."

कालिदासांनी मेघदूत मध्ये लिहलय  "नीचैर्गच्छत्युपरि दशा चक्रनेमिक्रमेण" (Our conditions go cyclically up and down like the spokes of a wheel). जे व्यक्ती बाबत खरे आहे तेच समाज, देश याबाबत खरे आहे. 

जॉन ग्रे पुन्हा एकदा:
".... In Greece and Rome, India and China, for example, history was understood in cyclical terms as the rise and fall of civilisations. Advances in ethics and politics were real and worth fighting for, but they would always be lost in the course of a few generations since – while knowledge may increase over time – human beings remain much the same. The inherent and incurable flaws of the human animal will eventually always prevail over any advance in civilisation. As I’ve put it in The Silence of Animals, civilisation is natural for humans. But so is barbarism...."


दुर्गा भागवत 'कौटिलीय अर्थशास्त्र" बाबत म्हणतात : "...मॅकिएवेलीत (माक्याव्हेल्ली) इतिहासाचे पूर्ण भान आहे. तसे अर्थशास्त्रात नाही...".  अशाच धर्तीवर म्हणावे लागेल की ऑर्वेलना इतिहासाच्या मूलभूत स्वरूपाचे भान नाही. ऑर्वेल यांचे वर दिलेले अवतरण पहा , त्यातही प्रगतीचा उल्लेख आहे, तिच्या प्रक्रियेचे वर्णन आहे पण ह्या इतिहासाच्या रहाटगाडग्याचा उल्लेख नाही.  हा त्यांच्या लेखनातील एक मोठा दोष आहे.

२. अस म्हटल जात की ऑरवेल खूप द्रष्टे होते.  काही बाबतीत त्यांची भविष्यवाणी अतिशय खरी ठरली आहे पण बेन ज्यूडा (Ben Judah) काय लिहतात ते पहा:
"...He predicted in 1941 alone that: the British Empire would be converted into “a socialist federation of states”; the London Stock Exchange would imminently be “torn down”; Britain’s country homes would be transformed into socialist “children’s camps”; and Eton and Harrow faced immediate post-war closure. He was making claims that were childish even for his time.... 
 .... Orwell’s actual warnings—about homogenization, the destruction of information, a world without wealth and only unlimited powers of the state—are now miles away. If anything, the threats to democracy are the opposite of “Orwellian.”
This is the problem of bringing everything, always, back to Orwell. He has nothing to say about social fragmentation, financialisation, ethnic splintering, unaccountable corporations, offshore kleptocrats, or echo chambers, to name but a few. Instead, he leaves too many political minds forever chasing, Quixote-like, the totalitarian windmill of untrammeled state power. They ignore the real anemic state before their eyes, which struggles to keep up with corporate algorithms, is unable to fulfil its promises, or tax the super-rich.  

Orwell was no visionary when it comes to economics, either. Recall his Floating Fortresses in 1984, explicitly designed to eat up the surplus production of a population. His inability to meaningfully reflect on the dynamics of capitalism (beyond moralising condemnation), let alone imagine a consumer society, is a fascinating wooly mammoth frozen in ice from the postwar era. It is a reminder of how utterly written-off by European intellectuals the market economy was immediately after the war—and what a shock the 1950s consumerist takeoff in living standards proved to be... "
    
३. ऑरवेल यांचा अँटी सेमिटीसम :

वर दिलेले थॉमस रिक्स यांचे अवतरण वाचा आणि, पुन्हा एकदा, बेन ज्यूडा: 
"...Orwell’s books, too, are heavily stained with anti-Semitism. His 1933 novelistic impressions and imaginings in Down And Out In Paris And London (where he would regularly visit a Parisian aunt in the cinquième arrondissement) contains constant and violent caricatures of Jews. “It would have been a pleasure to flatten the Jew’s nose,” he recalls. Whilst the Romanians, plongeurs and tramps Orwell meets have names and identities, the Jews are only ever Jews—whether it is “a red-haired Jew, an extraordinarily disagreeable man” he fantasises about punching in Paris, or when he returns to London and sights “a Jew, muzzle down in the plate, who was guiltily wolfing down bacon.” These are not feelings that George Orwell was shy to admit, even in writing. His 1945 musings on the illogicality of anti-Semitism as an ideology goes as far as to ask, “Why does anti-Semitism appeal to me?”
The time-stamp on these musings matter when it comes to judging his reputation as the now bronze-cast moral authority outside the BBC. This is quite different from judging Shakespeare on whether or not Shylock is an anti-Semitic caricature, given that The Merchant of Venice was written at a time when Judaism was a question of peripheral relevance to Elizabethan writers. Orwell first published the year Hitler came to power." 

थॉमस रिक्स तर त्यांच्यावर जास्त गंभीर आरोप करतायत - माणूसघाणे(!)पणाचा :“...the smell of humanity that repels him. When he notes the smells of nature, even of the barnyard, it is almost always with approval. In contrast, he is always ready to be horrified by mankind...”... भारतातल्या घामट उन्हाळ्यात ह्या ऑरवेल यांच टिकण कठीण होत!


आता आणखी एका गोष्टीचा उल्लेख. एका मराठी वर्तमानपत्राने २०१८साली, वर्षभरासाठी, ऑर्वेलयांच्या वर निबंधमाला सुरु केली...का? 

माझ्या मते त्याची कारणे आहेत :  बऱ्याच शिकलेल्या मराठी वाचणाऱ्या लोकांना  (उदा: ऑर्वेल यांच्या) भाबड्या समाजवादाबद्दल वाटणारे आकर्षण, 'नेटक्या' भाषेबद्दल (ज्याचा उदो उदो ऑर्वेल यांनी केला, वरचे पहिले अवतरण पहा) प्रेम आणि जगाबद्दल असलेला त्यांचा आणि त्यांच्या वृत्तपत्राचा काळा-पांढरा असा सोपा दृष्टिकोन ....

 "the secret to Orwell’s popularity is not in the facts of his life, or even in his journalism (though he hardly ever engaged in what we would call reporting), and certainly not in his prophecy. The secret of Orwell’s appeal lies in his rhetoric: everything is simple, everything is right or wrong, and everything—if you only listened to him—can finally be solved."

 Artist: Ralph Steadman, 1996