Modernity Quotes

Quotes tagged as "modernity" Showing 1-30 of 316
Nassim Nicholas Taleb
“The difference between technology and slavery is that slaves are fully aware that they are not free”
Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Walker Percy
“The peculiar predicament of the present-day self surely came to pass as a consequence of the disappointment of the high expectations of the self as it entered the age of science and technology. Dazzled by the overwhelming credentials of science, the beauty and elegance of the scientific method, the triumph of modern medicine over physical ailments, and the technological transformation of the very world itself, the self finds itself in the end disappointed by the failure of science and technique in those very sectors of life which had been its main source of ordinary satisfaction in past ages.

As John Cheever said, the main emotion of the adult Northeastern American who has had all the advantages of wealth, education, and culture is disappointment.

Work is disappointing. In spite of all the talk about making work more creative and self-fulfilling, most people hate their jobs, and with good reason. Most work in modern technological societies is intolerably dull and repetitive.

Marriage and family life are disappointing. Even among defenders of traditional family values, e.g., Christians and Jews, a certain dreariness must be inferred, if only from the average time of TV viewing. Dreary as TV is, it is evidently not as dreary as Mom talking to Dad or the kids talking to either.

School is disappointing. If science is exciting and art is exhilarating, the schools and universities have achieved the not inconsiderable feat of rendering both dull. As every scientist and poet knows, one discovers both vocations in spite of, not because of, school. It takes years to recover from the stupor of being taught Shakespeare in English Lit and Wheatstone's bridge in Physics.

Politics is disappointing. Most young people turn their backs on politics, not because of the lack of excitement of politics as it is practiced, but because of the shallowness, venality, and image-making as these are perceived through the media--one of the technology's greatest achievements.

The churches are disappointing, even for most believers. If Christ brings us new life, it is all the more remarkable that the church, the bearer of this good news, should be among the most dispirited institutions of the age. The alternatives to the institutional churches are even more grossly disappointing, from TV evangelists with their blown-dry hairdos to California cults led by prosperous gurus ignored in India but embraced in La Jolla.

Social life is disappointing. The very franticness of attempts to reestablish community and festival, by partying, by groups, by club, by touristy Mardi Gras, is the best evidence of the loss of true community and festival and of the loneliness of self, stranded as it is as an unspeakable consciousness in a world from which it perceives itself as somehow estranged, stranded even within its own body, with which it sees no clear connection.

But there remains the one unquestioned benefit of science: the longer and healthier life made possible by modern medicine, the shorter work-hours made possible by technology, hence what is perceived as the one certain reward of dreary life of home and the marketplace: recreation.

Recreation and good physical health appear to be the only ambivalent benefits of the technological revolution.”
Walker Percy, Lost in the Cosmos: The Last Self-Help Book

Chuck Palahniuk
“Anymore, no one's mind is their own.”
Chuck Palahniuk, Lullaby

William Wordsworth
“The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon,
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers,
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
It moves us not.—Great God! I'd rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.”
William Wordsworth, The Major Works

Jess C. Scott
“Nin knew how much humans loved money, riches, and material things—though he never really could understand why. The more technologically advanced the human species got, the more isolated they seemed to become, at the same time. It was alarming, how humans could spend entire lifetimes engaged in all kinds of activities, without getting any closer to knowing who they really were, inside.”
Jess C Scott, The Other Side of Life

Donald Barthelme
“The death of God left the angels in a strange position.”
Donald Barthelme

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
“Modernity: we created youth without heroism, age without wisdom, and life without grandeur”
Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms

St. Antony the Great
“A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him, saying, 'You are mad; you are not like us.”
St. Antony the Great

Leszek Kołakowski
“A modern philosopher who has never once suspected himself of being a charlatan must be such a shallow mind that his work is probably not worth reading.”
Leszek Kolakowski, Metaphysical Horror

The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new
“The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear.”
Antonio Gramsci, Prison Notebooks

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
“What organized dating sites fail to understand is that the people are far more interesting in what they don't say about themselves.”
Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms

Virginia Woolf
“If one is to deal with people on a large scale and say what one thinks, how can one avoid melancholy? I don’t admit to being hopeless, though: only the spectacle is a profoundly strange one; and as the current answers don’t do, one has to grope for a new one, and the process of discarding the old, when one is by no means certain what to put in their place, is a sad one.”
Virginia Woolf, A Writer's Diary

Tiffany Madison
“Women's liberation is one thing, but the permeation of anti-male sentiment in post-modern popular culture - from our mocking sitcom plots to degrading commercial story lines - stands testament to the ignorance of society. Fair or not, as the lead gender that never requested such a role, the historical male reputation is quite balanced.

For all of their perceived wrongs, over centuries they've moved entire civilizations forward, nurtured the human quest for discovery and industry, and led humankind from inconvenient darkness to convenient modernity. Navigating the chessboard that is human existence is quite a feat, yet one rarely acknowledged in modern academia or media. And yet for those monumental achievements, I love and admire the balanced creation that is man for all his strengths and weaknesses, his gifts and his curses. I would venture to say that most wise women do.”
Tiffany Madison

Nicolás Gómez Dávila
“I distrust every idea that doesn’t seem obsolete and grotesque to my contemporaries.”
Nicolás Gómez Dávila

Herman Melville
“All my means are sane, my motive and my object mad.”
Herman Melville, Moby-Dick or, the Whale

Jess C. Scott
“Anya looked upon Nin admirably. Having him as a partner-in-crime—if only on this one occasion, which she hoped would only be the start of something more—was more revitalizing than the cheap thrills of a cookie-cutter shallow, superficial romance, where the top priority was how beautiful a person was on the outside.”
Jess C Scott, The Other Side of Life

Zygmunt Bauman
“The updated version of Descartes’s Cogito is ‘I am seen, therefore I am’ – and that the more people who see me, the more I am…”
Zygmunt Bauman, Moral Blindness: The Loss of Sensitivity in Liquid Modernity

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
“The four most influential moderns: Darwin, Marx, Freud, and (the productive) Einstein were scholars but not academics. It has always been hard to do genuine - and no perishable - work within institutions”
Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Roland Barthes
“A paradox: the same century invented History and PHotography. But History is a memory fabricated according to positive formulas, a pure intellectual discourse which abolishes mythic Time; and the Photograph is a certain but fugitive testimony; so that everything, today, prepares our race for this impotence: to be no longer able to conceive duration, affectively or symbolically: the age of the Photograph is also the age of revolutions, contestations, assassinations, explosions, in short, of impatiences, of everything which denies ripening.”
Roland Barthes, Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography

Daniel J. Boorstin
“When we pick up the newspaper at breakfast, we expect - we even demand - that it brings us momentous events since the night before...We expect our two-week vacations to be romantic, exotic, cheap, and effortless..We expect anything and everything. We expect the contradictory and the impossible. We expect compact cars which are spacious; luxurious cars which are economical. We expect to be rich and charitable, powerful and merciful, active and reflective, kind and competitive. We expect to be inspired by mediocre appeals for excellence, to be made literate by illiterate appeals for literacy...to go to 'a church of our choice' and yet feel its guiding power over us, to revere God and to be God. Never have people been more the masters of their environment. Yet never has a people felt more deceived and disappointed. For never has a people expected so much more than the world could offer.”
Daniel Boorstin

René Guénon
“Those who might be tempted to give way to despair should realize that nothing accomplished in this order can ever be lost, that confusion, error and darkness can win the day only apparently and in a purely ephemeral way, that all partial and transitory disequilibrium must perforce contribute towards the greater equilibrium of the whole, and that nothing can ultimately prevail against the power of truth.”
René Guénon, The Crisis of the Modern World

William Blake
“When nations grow old the Arts grow cold
And commerce settles on every tree”
William Blake

Mark Twain
“When the end of the world comes, I want to be in Cincinnati because it's always 20 years behind the times.”
Mark Twain

Swami Sivananda Saraswati
“Modern civilisation is complicated and artificial. Simple folk live in a world of love and peace. Let no one hate another or harm another.”
Sivananda

Roman Payne
“Apollinaire said a poet should be 'of his time.' I say objects of the Digital Age belong in newspapers, not literature. When I read a novel, I don’t want credit cards; I want cash in ducats and gold doubloons.”
Roman Payne

Herman Wouk
“Look at us. We build giant highways and murderously fast cars for killing each other and committing suicide. Instead of bomb shelters we construct gigantic frail glass buildings all over Manhattan at Ground Zero, a thousand feet high, open to the sky, life a woman undressing before an intruder and provoking him to rape her. We ring Russia's borders with missile-launching pads, and then scream that she's threatening us. In all history there's never been a more lurid mass example of the sadist-masochist expression of the thanatos instinct than the present conduct of the United States. The Nazis by comparison were Eagle Scouts.”
Herman Wouk, Don't Stop the Carnival

Vizi Andrei
“In an abundant world, productivity is about eliminating bad habits; then adding good ones.

In an abundant world, knowledge is about filtering, rather than gathering, information.

In an abundant world, discipline is the new freedom.

In an abundant world―less is more; and more is less.”
Vizi Andrei, Economy of Truth: Practical Maxims and Reflections

Angelica Hopes
“In a feast of fame and talks,
Scandal flashing, raising tongue and brows.
In a blast of bombing and power play,
Fear and death dig more revenge.

In a forgotten continent,
Famine and drought devour lives.
In an unfortunate eye of a rebelling weather,
Crashing homes, leaving many in devastation and desperation.

In a country shaking with violence,
Innocent victims cry for justice and peace.
In a home shaking with turmoil,
Humble patient, hiding voice wants to be heard.

In a tick of a second,
A new breathe of life beats!
To belong in this world.
Constantly changing, decaying or improving?

In a snap of innovation:
Life goes big leap!
Regression somewhere unseen,
But felt in a slow, long run.”
Angelica Hopes, Rhythm of a Heart, Music of a Soul

Jürgen Habermas
“Today, the language of the market penetrates every pore and forces every interpersonal relation into the schema of individual preference.”
Jürgen Habermas

Amin Maalouf
“Nothing is born of nothing, least of all knowledge, modernity, or enlightened thought; progress is made in tiny surges, in successive laps, like an endless relay race. But there are links without which nothing would be passed on, and for that reason, they deserve the gratitude of all who benefited from them.”
Amin Maalouf, Orígenes

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