Monday, March 30, 2009

Common Grounds

One of the issues that Fyodor raised on this book, The Idiot,  is Liberalism.

This reminded me of the book that I read before this.  Colonel Aureliano Buendia fought almost all his life to fight for Liberalism, which I believe he never won after all those years.

Fyodor, however, is not so much fond of Liberalism.  He believes that Liberalism is not only "an attack on the established order of things," but the fact is, "it is an attack on the very essence of things."  I am not going to talk more of this, since I am not really in the position nor the knowledge of such things.

My issue is that as a traveller who travels through books, I could see that they have common grounds.  I don't exactly know how many years apart were these two books written (One Hundred Years of Solitude and The Idiot). But the fight for one common ground is there.  But, it is also safe to say that we do not know really if they are fighting for the same ideology, which I am sure some philosophers or historians would know.  This also reminds me of a movie I have once seen, "Cold Mountain" which I think (but I am not really sure) the war or battle was also with regard to Liberalism.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

First Fit

Myshkin had his first fit today.

If I haven't said, he is epileptic.  This is also the reason why he was sent to Switzerland.  He received treatment which helped him in a significant way.  This was his first fit since he came back to Russia.

Have you every wondered what it feels like when they suffer from these fits?  We will never feel it because we are not, but let Fyodor take you into one of his fits, and you will imagine what it feels like, you will almost feel as if you're the one having the fit.

I wanted to rip off the part that describes what an epileptic goes through when he is about to 'get into' a fit; those few seconds before getting into it.  But I am afraid that it might be a spoiler for some.  So, after a few minutes of debate within myself, I decided to just leave it and let it be.

Fyodor describe the fit very effectively.  What really happens before they actually fall into that pit of darkness that only them could suffer?  This moment stayed with me even if I already closed my eyes to sleep.  The funny thing is, I almost thought of fearing that I myself might go into the fit,  affected by the way I imagined Fyodor's descriptions.

 It has been a long while already since I experienced having been affected by such stories and books.

Sunday, March 15, 2009


Skoptsy is a Russian word meaning "castrated one."  This is the main feature of the sect named the same and it existed in Russia during Myshkin's time.  It is a secret sect of Christianity that practices self-mutilation.  They believed that once you are castrated, you return to the state before Adam and Eve committed the Original Sin.

This was mentioned partially in The Idiot.  Roghozin's house being the haven of Skoptsy's at that time.  Myshkin's next visit when he came back to St. Petersberg was at Rogozhin's place where later on, he was introduced to Rogozhin's mother as his brother.  Rogozhin asked for his mother's blessings which she automatically gave.  He later told Myshkin that his mother doesn't hear anything anymore and that the blessings came automatically.  At this point, Rogozhin accepted defeat and told Myshkin that he is giving in.

My question is, did he finally give up, or is he into something else?


I was looking for the book "Night" by Elie Wiesel.  Back home, they were out of stock when I had the money, and everything was put off since.  And I left for here.

Recently, I became a member of a bookshop and a holder of their loyalty card.  I also discovered that you can ask the customer service hotline for some books you are looking for.  Not bad... saves me the time to visit them only to find out they don't have it on their stock.

So, I dialed.  The customer care representative told me that it's out of stock, and later on, told me that it's banned here.  I said okay if that's the case... it's normal to hear that here every now and then.

But the thing that puzzled me is the fact that "A Thousand Splendid Suns" byKhaled Hosseini  is on their book shelf, on the Top 10 Books.  Why it puzzles me?  This book tells the story about domestic violence, oppression, war and a lot of not-so-good things about the Muslim culture,  set during the late 1990s until mid 2000, and yet, it is allowed.

Night by Elie Wiesel, is his autobiography about his experiences on concentration camps at Auschwitz and Buchenwald during the Second World War.
I don't get the point.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Ottical Sense

I haven't been with Myshkin for a few days now.  I've been busy over the weekend/holiday and didn't even have enough time to spend with him.

But anyway, the memories of Urusula is still very present.  While I was waiting outside the office for one of my errands, I deliberately refrained from looking inside the office while waiting for the documents to be done.  Instead, I focused on the sounds and imagined what was going on based on what I heard.  And to my surprise, I know I've been hearing those sounds before but actually overlooked it.

Ursula, by the way, is one of the most influential and lead characters on my journey with One Hundred Years of Solitude.  Since I've already finished with the book, I am coming up with a page about it later on.  But it's going to be much later (but I hope not... but it might be...) because I will be busy moving to a new house.  Gabriel Garcia Marquez is one good writer... really good.  I am appalled most of the time as to the vastness of his imagination; very creative.  She almost lost her sight to cataracts, making her discover the power of hearing.  This reminded me so much of my mom who had cataracts, too, and learned to live with the power of hearing, and smell as well.  This was justified again by Gabriel Garcia Marquez on the book.

Anyway, Myshkin was back in town after a long absence.  I was surprised that he visited someone I didn't expect him to.  Let's see if I could be with Myshkin tonight.  I want to know the purpose of his visit to this person.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Hello World!

So, I guess this is really Hello!

I have a few blogs here and there but I created this for what I shall call travels within my room.    This will involve a lot about the books that I will be reading.  Well, as for spoilers, I don't really want them either, so I would not try to put one.  But I have a question you might want to answer:  Are excerpts from books (like passages from chapters) considered spoilers?

I'll see how I can fix this site accordingly.  There are certain features here that I like that's why I sort of migrated, but it will take time to learn - hopefully, just a short time.

But in the meantime, I am with The Idiot and his fortunes and misfortunes.

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