Life Beside the Point
Just as there is an infinite number of points in a line, or an infinite number of lines in a plane, you might say there is an infinite number of aphorisms about the Creator. Theology is inexhaustible because its subject is.
An aphorism is a mode of expression that conveys the maximum with the minimum, and as far as I know, Dávila is the greatest of all aphorists. All others are number two or lower.
Lichtenberg said of his own aphorisms that if they "fall on the right soil" they "may grow into chapters and even whole dissertations" (in Kimball). That is certainly the case with Dávila. How does that work? How does one pack so much power into so little a space?
Most tenured babble is precisely the opposite: it requires whole books to convey a single pedestrian thought, and oftentimes not even that. You can always tell when a book is of this nature when it has a blurb from some mainstream figure such as Tom Brokaw, or a NY Times reviewer, or Katie Couric, or a politician. Such names guarantee banality.
On the other hand, not only does no one within the conspiracy know of Dávila, if he were known, he'd be treated like Donald Trump. For they wouldn't understand Dávila, but only know he is saying Forbidden Things that must be reflexively attacked.
"One commentator," writes Kimball, described Lichtenberg as a "spy on humanity," and you know what they do to captured spies. In Obamaworld it is as if we are spies exiled in our own land. Living as I do in the one party state of California, I am forced to supra-sist as a deep cover agent. Fortunately there are other agents whom we are able to detect through the operation of our regular-guydar.
Of Lichtenberg, Kimball writes that his aphorisms present "not so much a system as a sensibility, a take on the world." Same with Dávila. He is coming from the same place he is describing. I like to think I do the same thing, only ad nauseum.
Even so, I am always mindful of getting the strunk out of my white and Omitting Needless Words. I realize you folks don't have all day, and if I had all day, I could perhaps pack it all into an aphorism. My #1 excuse is that my primary audience is me, and that I simply allow others to spy on my improvisations. So you have no one to blame but yourselves.
"A man of prodigious but unfocused curiosity, [he] dabbled everywhere but persevered nowhere" (Kimball).
Hey, that's an insult! No, wait. He's talking about Lichtenberg.
"Aphorisms are insights shorn of supporting ratiocination" (ibid). Think about that: they are the direct transmission of an insight. Therefore, they are like ex-sights dropped into your head.
Kimball says that when Bertrand Russell told Wittgenstein to, hey, feel free to provide an actual argument for what you just said, LudWitt "replied that arguments spoil the beauty of insights and that 'he would feel as if he was dirtying a flower with muddy hands.'"
I heard that. Is that what I'm doing by blogviating on Dávila's aphorisms, as I am no doubt about to do? Am I defeating their purpose by explicating what is implicate?
For "A ponderous aphorism is a failed aphorism." And "like an electric flash on a camera, they require time between discharges if they are to be fully illuminating" (Kimball). You have to allow them to sink in and do their work. Example:
"With most people disbelief in a thing is founded on blind belief in something else" (Lichtenberg).
Now, I could go on and on about that one, but the arkive reveals that I already have, so I'll let it go.
"Having a low opinion of human nature may not be a prerequisite for being a good aphorist. But it helps" (Kimball).
I don't know about that, for if you don't have a low opinion of human nature, it is doubtful that you have any wisdom to convey. After all, thinking well of human nature is among the most catastrophic principles of the left: you know, they love mankind. It's individual human beings they hate.
"Aphorists are by profession debunkers" (ibid). Here again, this is why members of the conspiracy cannot be good aphorists. Think of a Bill Maher. He's got the cynicism and the brevity, but they are in the service of rebunking (e.g., AGW, Christianity, redefinition of marriage, etc).
Not to sound like a leftist, but you could almost say that power makes a poor aphorist. Imagine Hillary making a witty comment. Debunking power is the power of the aphorist. Or one of them, anyway.
Question and answer: Lichtenberg: When a book and a head collide and a hollow sound is heard, must it have always come from the book? Dávila: The collision with an intelligent book makes us see a thousand stars.
Now, watch how quickly I can assemble a few of Dávila's aphorisms that express everything in this post in concentrated form:
To write honestly for the rest, one must write fundamentally for oneself.
For The first step of wisdom is to admit, with good humor, that there is no reason why our ideas should interest anybody.
Words do not communicate, they remind.
Ever gnosis that? It's why arguments are not necessarily necessary, and may just obscure the insight.
Clarity is the virtue of a man who does not distrust what he says. Think of the clarity of a Thomas Sowell vs. the tortured and torturing obscurity of the tenured.
For The writer who has not tortured his sentences tortures the reader. And Prolixity is not an excess of words but a dearth of ideas. Boy is that true of the left! Ever notice how they go on and on without saying anything substantive? To be a leftist is to be entirely beside the point.
The fewer adjectives we waste, the more difficult it is to lie. Here again, if you remove the hysterical adjectives from a leftist's speech, there is nothing left. A lie surrounded by a bodyguard of adjectives doesn't make it true.
very consoling one for these endarkened times: I do not belong to a world that is passing away. I prolong and transmit a truth that does not die.
Besides, When one century's writers can write nothing but boring things, we readers change century.
And Unless what we write seems obsolete to modern man, immature to the adult, trivial to the serious man, we must start over.
I can only hope this post was obsolete, immature, and trivial enough for you.