Zitate von Jewgeni Iwanowitsch Samjatin

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Jewgeni Iwanowitsch Samjatin

Geburtstag: 20. Januar 1884
Todesdatum: 10. März 1937
Andere Namen:Jevgenij Ivanovič Zamjatin

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Jewgeni Iwanowitsch Samjatin war ein russischer Revolutionär und Schriftsteller.

Zitate Jewgeni Iwanowitsch Samjatin

„Revolution is everywhere, in everything. It is infinite. There is no final revolution, no final number.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: Ask point blank: What is revolution? Some people will answer, paraphrasing Louis XIV: We are the revolution. Others will answer by the calendar, naming the month and the day. Still others will give you an ABC answer. But if we are to go on from the ABC to syllables, the answer will be this: Two dead, dark stars collide with an inaudible, deafening crash and light a new star: this is revolution. A molecule breaks away from its orbit and, bursting into a neighboring atomic universe, gives birth to a new chemical element: this is revolution. Lobachevsky cracks the walls of the millennia old Euclidean world with a single book, opening a path to innumerable non-Euclidean spaces: this is revolution. Revolution is everywhere, in everything. It is infinite. There is no final revolution, no final number. The social revolution is only one of an infinite number of numbers: the law of revolution is not a social law, but an immeasurably greater one. It is a cosmic, universal law — like the laws of the conservation of energy and of the dissipation of energy (entropy).<!-- Some day, an exact formula for the law of revolution will be established. And in this formula, nations, classes, stars — and books — will be expressed as numerical quantities.

„Heretics are the only (bitter) remedy against the entropy of human thought.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: The law of revolution is red, fiery, deadly; but this death means the birth of new life, a new star. And the law of entropy is cold, ice blue, like the icy interplanetary infinities. The flame turns from red to an even, warm pink, no longer deadly, but comfortable. The sun ages into a planet, convenient for highways, stores, beds, prostitutes, prisons: this is the law. And if the planet is to be kindled into youth again, it must be set on fire, it must be thrown off the smooth highway of evolution: this is the law. The flame will cool tomorrow, or the day after tomorrow (in the Book of Genesis days are equal to years, ages). But someone must see this already today, and speak heretically today about tomorrow. Heretics are the only (bitter) remedy against the entropy of human thought.

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„It is an error to divide people into the living and the dead: there are people who are dead-alive, and people who are alive-alive.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: It is an error to divide people into the living and the dead: there are people who are dead-alive, and people who are alive-alive. The dead-alive also write, walk, speak, act. But they make no mistakes; only machines make no mistakes, and they produce only dead things. The alive-alive are constantly in error, in search, in questions, in torment. The same is true of what we write: it walks and it talks, but it can be dead-alive or alive-alive. What is truly alive stops before nothing and ceaselessly seeks answers to absurd, "childish" questions. Let the answers be wrong, let the philosophy be mistaken — errors are more valuable than truths: truth is of the machine, error is alive; truth reassures, error disturbs. And if answers be impossible of attainment, all the better! Dealing with answered questions is the privilege of brains constructed like a cow's stomach, which, as we know, is built to digest cud.

„The alive-alive are constantly in error, in search, in questions, in torment.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: It is an error to divide people into the living and the dead: there are people who are dead-alive, and people who are alive-alive. The dead-alive also write, walk, speak, act. But they make no mistakes; only machines make no mistakes, and they produce only dead things. The alive-alive are constantly in error, in search, in questions, in torment. The same is true of what we write: it walks and it talks, but it can be dead-alive or alive-alive. What is truly alive stops before nothing and ceaselessly seeks answers to absurd, "childish" questions. Let the answers be wrong, let the philosophy be mistaken — errors are more valuable than truths: truth is of the machine, error is alive; truth reassures, error disturbs. And if answers be impossible of attainment, all the better! Dealing with answered questions is the privilege of brains constructed like a cow's stomach, which, as we know, is built to digest cud.

„No revolution, no heresy is comfortable or easy. For it is a leap, it is a break in the smooth evolutionary curve, and a break is a wound, a pain.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: A new form is not intelligible to everyone; many find it difficult. Perhaps. The ordinary, the banal is, of course, simpler, more pleasant, more comfortable. Euclid's world is very simple, and Einstein's world is very difficult — but it is no longer possible to return to Euclid. No revolution, no heresy is comfortable or easy. For it is a leap, it is a break in the smooth evolutionary curve, and a break is a wound, a pain. But the wound is necessary: most of mankind suffers from hereditary sleeping sickness, and victims of this sickness (entropy) must not be allowed to sleep, or it will be their final sleep, death. The same disease often afflicts artists and writers: they sink into satiated slumber in forms once invented and twice perfected. And they lack the strength to wound themselves, to cease loving what they once loved, to leave their old, familiar apartments filled with the scent of laurel leaves and walk away into the open field, to start anew. Of course, to wound oneself is difficult, even dangerous. But for those who are alive, living today as yesterday and yesterday as today is still more difficult.

„Ask point blank: What is revolution?“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: Ask point blank: What is revolution? Some people will answer, paraphrasing Louis XIV: We are the revolution. Others will answer by the calendar, naming the month and the day. Still others will give you an ABC answer. But if we are to go on from the ABC to syllables, the answer will be this: Two dead, dark stars collide with an inaudible, deafening crash and light a new star: this is revolution. A molecule breaks away from its orbit and, bursting into a neighboring atomic universe, gives birth to a new chemical element: this is revolution. Lobachevsky cracks the walls of the millennia old Euclidean world with a single book, opening a path to innumerable non-Euclidean spaces: this is revolution. Revolution is everywhere, in everything. It is infinite. There is no final revolution, no final number. The social revolution is only one of an infinite number of numbers: the law of revolution is not a social law, but an immeasurably greater one. It is a cosmic, universal law — like the laws of the conservation of energy and of the dissipation of energy (entropy).<!-- Some day, an exact formula for the law of revolution will be established. And in this formula, nations, classes, stars — and books — will be expressed as numerical quantities.

„Realism that is not primitive, not realia but realiora, consists in displacement, distortion, curvature, non-objectivity.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: Science and art both project the world along certain coordinates. Differences in form are due only to differences in the coordinates. All realistic forms are projections along the fixed, plane coordinates of Euclid's world. These coordinates do not exist in nature. Nor does the finite, fixed world; this world is a convention, an abstraction, an unreality. And therefore Realism — be it "socialist" or "bourgeois" — is unreal. Far closer to reality is projection along speeding, curved surfaces — as in the new mathematics and the new art. Realism that is not primitive, not realia but realiora, consists in displacement, distortion, curvature, non-objectivity. Only the camera lens is objective. Zamyatin here references a statement in Latin created by the poet Vyacheslav Ivanov: a realibus ad realiora ["from the real to the more real" or “from reality toward a higher reality"]

„To literature today the plane surface of daily life is what the earth is to an airplane — a mere runway from which to take off, in order to rise aloft, from daily life to the realities of being, to philosophy, to the fantastic.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: The formal character of a living literature is the same as its inner character: it denies verities; it denies what everyone knows and what I have known until this moment. It departs from the canonical tracks, from the broad highway. … To literature today the plane surface of daily life is what the earth is to an airplane — a mere runway from which to take off, in order to rise aloft, from daily life to the realities of being, to philosophy, to the fantastic. Let yesterday's cart creak along the well-paved highways. The living have strength enough to cut away their yesterday.

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„Of course, to wound oneself is difficult, even dangerous. But for those who are alive, living today as yesterday and yesterday as today is still more difficult.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: A new form is not intelligible to everyone; many find it difficult. Perhaps. The ordinary, the banal is, of course, simpler, more pleasant, more comfortable. Euclid's world is very simple, and Einstein's world is very difficult — but it is no longer possible to return to Euclid. No revolution, no heresy is comfortable or easy. For it is a leap, it is a break in the smooth evolutionary curve, and a break is a wound, a pain. But the wound is necessary: most of mankind suffers from hereditary sleeping sickness, and victims of this sickness (entropy) must not be allowed to sleep, or it will be their final sleep, death. The same disease often afflicts artists and writers: they sink into satiated slumber in forms once invented and twice perfected. And they lack the strength to wound themselves, to cease loving what they once loved, to leave their old, familiar apartments filled with the scent of laurel leaves and walk away into the open field, to start anew. Of course, to wound oneself is difficult, even dangerous. But for those who are alive, living today as yesterday and yesterday as today is still more difficult.

„The world is kept alive only by heretics: the heretic Christ, the heretic Copernicus, the heretic Tolstoy. Our symbol of faith is heresy: tomorrow is an inevitable heresy of today, which has turned into a pillar of salt, and to yesterday, which has scattered to dust. Today denies yesterday, but is a denial of denial tomorrow.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: Every today is at the same time both a cradle and a shroud: a shroud for yesterday, a cradle for tomorrow. Today, yesterday, and tomorrow are equally near to one another, and equally far. They are generations, they are grandfathers, fathers, and grandsons. And grandsons invariably love and hate the fathers; the fathers invariably hate and love the grandfathers. Today is doomed to die — because yesterday died, and because tomorrow will be born. Such is the wise and cruel law. Cruel, because it condemns to eternal dissatisfaction those who already today see the distant peaks of tomorrow; wise, because eternal dissatisfaction is the only pledge of eternal movement forward, eternal creation. He who has found his ideal today is, like Lot's wife, already turned to a pillar of salt, has already sunk into the earth and does not move ahead. The world is kept alive only by heretics: the heretic Christ, the heretic Copernicus, the heretic Tolstoy. Our symbol of faith is heresy: tomorrow is an inevitable heresy of today, which has turned into a pillar of salt, and to yesterday, which has scattered to dust. Today denies yesterday, but is a denial of denial tomorrow. This is the constant dialectic path which in a grandiose parabola sweeps the world into infinity. Yesterday, the thesis; today, the antithesis, and tomorrow, the synthesis. "Tomorrow" (1919), as translated in A Soviet Heretic : Essays by Yevgeny Zamyatin (1970) edited and translated by Mirra Ginsburg

„Instead of the Sermon on the Mount, under the scorching sun, to up-raised arms and sobbing people, there is drowsy prayer in a magnificent abbey.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: When the flaming, seething sphere (in science, religion, social life, art) cools, the fiery magma becomes coated with dogma—a rigid, ossified, motionless crust. Dogmatization in science, religion, social life, or art is the entropy of thought. What has become dogma no longer burns; it only gives off warmth — it is tepid, it is cool. Instead of the Sermon on the Mount, under the scorching sun, to up-raised arms and sobbing people, there is drowsy prayer in a magnificent abbey. Instead of Galileo's "But still, it turns!" there are dispassionate computations in a well-heated room in an observatory. On the Galileos, the epigones build their own structures, slowly, bit by bit, like corals. This is the path of evolution — until a new heresy explodes the crush of dogma and all the edifices of the most enduring stone which have been raised upon it. Explosions are not very comfortable. And therefore the exploders, the heretics, are justly exterminated by fire, by axes, by words. To every today, to every evolution, to the laborious, slow, useful, most useful, creative, coral-building work, heretics are a threat. Stupidly, recklessly, they burst into today from tomorrow; they are romantics.

„What we need in literature today are vast philosophic horizons — horizons seen from mastheads, from airplanes; we need the most ultimate, the most fearsome, the most fearless "Why?" and "What next?"
This is what children ask. But then children are the boldest philosophers.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: What we need in literature today are vast philosophic horizons — horizons seen from mastheads, from airplanes; we need the most ultimate, the most fearsome, the most fearless "Why?" and "What next?" This is what children ask. But then children are the boldest philosophers. They enter life naked, not covered by the smallest fig leaf of dogma, absolutes, creeds. This is why every question they ask is so absurdly naive and so frighteningly complex. The new men entering life today are as naked and fearless as children; and they, too, like children, like Schopenhauer, Dostoevsky, Nietzsche, ask "Why?" and "What next?" Philosophers of genius, children, and the people are equally wise — because they ask equally foolish questions. Foolish to a civilized man who has a well-furnished European apartment with an excellent toilet and a well-furnished dogma.

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„Today is doomed to die — because yesterday died, and because tomorrow will be born.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: Every today is at the same time both a cradle and a shroud: a shroud for yesterday, a cradle for tomorrow. Today, yesterday, and tomorrow are equally near to one another, and equally far. They are generations, they are grandfathers, fathers, and grandsons. And grandsons invariably love and hate the fathers; the fathers invariably hate and love the grandfathers. Today is doomed to die — because yesterday died, and because tomorrow will be born. Such is the wise and cruel law. Cruel, because it condemns to eternal dissatisfaction those who already today see the distant peaks of tomorrow; wise, because eternal dissatisfaction is the only pledge of eternal movement forward, eternal creation. He who has found his ideal today is, like Lot's wife, already turned to a pillar of salt, has already sunk into the earth and does not move ahead. The world is kept alive only by heretics: the heretic Christ, the heretic Copernicus, the heretic Tolstoy. Our symbol of faith is heresy: tomorrow is an inevitable heresy of today, which has turned into a pillar of salt, and to yesterday, which has scattered to dust. Today denies yesterday, but is a denial of denial tomorrow. This is the constant dialectic path which in a grandiose parabola sweeps the world into infinity. Yesterday, the thesis; today, the antithesis, and tomorrow, the synthesis. "Tomorrow" (1919), as translated in A Soviet Heretic : Essays by Yevgeny Zamyatin (1970) edited and translated by Mirra Ginsburg

„Dealing with answered questions is the privilege of brains constructed like a cow's stomach, which, as we know, is built to digest cud.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: It is an error to divide people into the living and the dead: there are people who are dead-alive, and people who are alive-alive. The dead-alive also write, walk, speak, act. But they make no mistakes; only machines make no mistakes, and they produce only dead things. The alive-alive are constantly in error, in search, in questions, in torment. The same is true of what we write: it walks and it talks, but it can be dead-alive or alive-alive. What is truly alive stops before nothing and ceaselessly seeks answers to absurd, "childish" questions. Let the answers be wrong, let the philosophy be mistaken — errors are more valuable than truths: truth is of the machine, error is alive; truth reassures, error disturbs. And if answers be impossible of attainment, all the better! Dealing with answered questions is the privilege of brains constructed like a cow's stomach, which, as we know, is built to digest cud.

„The law of revolution is red, fiery, deadly; but this death means the birth of new life, a new star. And the law of entropy is cold, ice blue, like the icy interplanetary infinities. The flame turns from red to an even, warm pink, no longer deadly, but comfortable.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: The law of revolution is red, fiery, deadly; but this death means the birth of new life, a new star. And the law of entropy is cold, ice blue, like the icy interplanetary infinities. The flame turns from red to an even, warm pink, no longer deadly, but comfortable. The sun ages into a planet, convenient for highways, stores, beds, prostitutes, prisons: this is the law. And if the planet is to be kindled into youth again, it must be set on fire, it must be thrown off the smooth highway of evolution: this is the law. The flame will cool tomorrow, or the day after tomorrow (in the Book of Genesis days are equal to years, ages). But someone must see this already today, and speak heretically today about tomorrow. Heretics are the only (bitter) remedy against the entropy of human thought.

„This is the path of evolution — until a new heresy explodes the crush of dogma and all the edifices of the most enduring stone which have been raised upon it.“

— Yevgeny Zamyatin
Context: When the flaming, seething sphere (in science, religion, social life, art) cools, the fiery magma becomes coated with dogma—a rigid, ossified, motionless crust. Dogmatization in science, religion, social life, or art is the entropy of thought. What has become dogma no longer burns; it only gives off warmth — it is tepid, it is cool. Instead of the Sermon on the Mount, under the scorching sun, to up-raised arms and sobbing people, there is drowsy prayer in a magnificent abbey. Instead of Galileo's "But still, it turns!" there are dispassionate computations in a well-heated room in an observatory. On the Galileos, the epigones build their own structures, slowly, bit by bit, like corals. This is the path of evolution — until a new heresy explodes the crush of dogma and all the edifices of the most enduring stone which have been raised upon it. Explosions are not very comfortable. And therefore the exploders, the heretics, are justly exterminated by fire, by axes, by words. To every today, to every evolution, to the laborious, slow, useful, most useful, creative, coral-building work, heretics are a threat. Stupidly, recklessly, they burst into today from tomorrow; they are romantics.

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