Thursday, August 4, 2011

Communication is not the noise of slogans

Photo by Thomas Merton
"Everything healthy, everything certain, everything holy, if we can find such things, they all need to be emphasized and articulated. For this it is necessary that there be communication between the hearts and minds of men, communication and not the noise of slogans or the repetition of cliches. Communication is becoming more and more difficult, and ... speech is in danger of perishing or being perverted in the amplified noise of beasts.... There is, it seems to me, every reason why we should attempt to cry out to one another and comfort one another, in so far as this may be possible, with the truth of Christ and also with the truth of humanism and reason. For faith cannot not be preserved if ... man is destroyed: that is to say if his humanity is utterly debased and mechanized, while he himself remains on earth as the instrument of enormous and unidentified forces like those which press us inexorably to the brink of cataclysm..."

- Thomas Merton
from a letter to Paulo Alceu Amorosa Lima in Rio de Janiero
Cold War Letters, Orbis Books, p 12


HT: Jim Forest

2 comments:

  1. sometimes it does seem like we are shouting across a void at each other

    media explains and pressures us into the normal, templates of the powerful: sometimes i wonder if the whole thing isn't going to collapse around us like a pack of cards (or stage set)- probably not

    my daughter was furious with me for declaiming lady gaga as a commodified product, like a cheeseburger

    susan crane started as a situationist - irony to attack the media: which the media noticed, then looped into it's advertising: a technique being ironic about the irony of détournement.

    cliches - yeah, you get sick of the cliches and cynical

    what the hell do you do without the media anyway? most of us twiddle our thumbs

    ReplyDelete
  2. Good to see you back at work, Nido!

    I agree with you totally about the media. In fact, you've said it better than anyone else I've heard, lately:

    "media explains and pressures us into the normal, templates of the powerful: sometimes i wonder if the whole thing isn't going to collapse around us like a pack of cards (or stage set)- probably not"

    I agree with your daughter about Lady Gaga. Need to think about your comment about Susan Crane.

    Glad to see you back. I missed you.

    ReplyDelete

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