Despre intelectuali si libertate: Codul moral invatat de Milosz de la Jeanne Hersch

Czeslaw Milosz a fost bun prieten cu Jeanne Hersch, studenta si asistenta lui Karl Jaspers, autoarea unei carti, “Ideologie et realite”, despre care a scris randuri de o admirabila adancime Monica Lovinescu. Iata un poem filosofic scris de Milosz despre ceea ce a invatat el de la distinsa ganditoare elvetiana (“Selected Poems. 1931-2004″).

Era la Universitatea Georgetown, cred ca prin 1992, cand i-am vazut plimbandu-se pe Milosz si pe Jeanne Hersch, prinsi intr-o conversatie pe care nimeni n-ar fi avut dreptul sa o intrerupa. Participau la o conferinta la care a vorbit si Ken Jowitt, pe atunci profesor la Berkeley, unde a predat si autorul „Gandirii captive”. Impreuna cu Ken, i-am privit pe Milosz si pe marea ganditoare elvetiana stiind ca ne era dat sa contemplam nobletea spiritului aievea, incarnata in acele doua fiinte.

Poemul lui Milosz propune acele repere axiologice, asa cum s-au configurat ele in opera si viata lui Jeanne Hersch, fara de care intelectualul se rataceste in paienjenisul intotdeauna inselator al ideologiilor cu pretentii mantuitoare. Sper sa ma ocup intr-un articol viitor de excelenta carte a Irenei Grudzinska Gross, aparuta la Yale University Press in 2009, despre Milosz si Brodsky. Oricum, o recomand calduros. (

1. That reason is a gift of God and that we should believe in its ability to comprehend the world.

2. That they have been wrong who undermined our confidence in reason by enumerating the forces that want to usurp it: class struggle, libido and will to power.

3. That we should be aware that our being is enclosed within the circle of its perception, but not reduce reality to dreams and phantoms of the mind.

4. That truth is a proof of freedom and that the sign of slavery is a lie.

5. That the Proper attitude toward being is respect and that we must, therefore, avoid the company of people who debase being with their sarcasm, and praise nothingness.

6. That, even if we are accused of arrogance, it is the case that in the life of the mind a strict hierarchy is mandatory.

7. That intellectuals in the twentieth century were afflicted with the habit of barati , i.e., irresponsible jabber.

8. That in the hierarchy of human activities the arts stand higher than philosophy, and yet bad philosophy can spoil art.

9. That objective truth exists; namely, out of two contrary assertions, one is false, one is true, except in strictly defined cases when maintaining contradiction is legitimate.

10. That quite independently of the fate of religious denominations we should preserve a “philosophical faith,” i.e., a belief in transcendence as a measure of humanity.

11. That time excludes and sentences to oblivion only those works of our hands and minds which prove worthless in raising up, century after century, the huge edifice of civilization.

12. That in our lives we should not succumb to because of our errors and our sins, for the past is never closed down and receives the meaning we give it by our subsequent acts.

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