Saturday, 2 October 2010

and yet i am sorry to lose God...

“Imagine: inside, in the nerves, in the head — that is, these nerves are there in the brain … (damn them!) there are sort of little tails, the little tails of those nerves, and as soon as they begin quivering … that is, you see, I look at something with my eyes and then they begin quivering, those little tails … and when they quiver, then an image appears … it doesn’t appear at once, but an instant, a second, passes … and then something like a moment appears; that is, not a moment — devil take the moment! — but an image; that is, an object, or an action, damn it! That’s why I see and then think, because of those tails, not at all because I’ve got a soul, and that I am some sort of image and likeness. All that is nonsense! Rakitin explained it all to me yesterday, brother, and it simply bowled me over. It’s magnificent, Alyosha, this science! A new man’s arising — that I understand…. And yet I am sorry to lose God!”

The imprisoned Dmitri Karamazov as he tries to make sense of what he has just learned from a visiting academic from Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, The Brothers Karamazov (1880)

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