E.M. Cioran: The Delusions of our Sadness

Southern Nights

“However much I have frequented the mystics, deep down I have always sided with the Devil; unable to equal him in power, I have tried to be worthy of him, at least, in insolence, acrimony, arbitrariness, and caprice.”

– E.M. Cioran, Anathemas and Admirations

On rereading Edmund White’s essay on E.M. Cioran’s book Anathemas and Admirations I was reminded of my fascination with the power of the aphorism. White being his usual ironic self spoke of the late Cioran as “a Romanian who’s lived in France since 1937, admires Buddhism of the most unconsoling variety, has contemplated suicide for decades, esteems extremists, fanatics and eccentrics of all sorts and has instituted vertigo into his daily life. Instead of accumulating wisdom, he has shed certainties. Instead of reaching out to touch someone, he has fastidiously cultivated his exemplary solitude.”  He is another member of that small  band of epicurean pessimists who…

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