Sunday, 20 September 2009

Sunday Quotation

Honoré de Balzac

French Novelist and Dramatist 1799-1850

Man is neither good nor bad; he is born with instincts and abilities.

Hatred is a tonic, it makes one live, it inspires vengeance; but pity kills, it makes our weakness weaker.

When one has no particular aptitude for anything, one takes to the pen and poses as a talented person.


  1. Well the posing may pass or not. I like your pen and paper things. er typing things.

  2. We may share a name, but M de Balzac and I will differ. I've seen evil - looked it in the eye and am sure it exists. The lack of or possession of instincts and abilities may enhance life, shape attitudes, but evil, though rare, is not erased by instincts and abilities, rather honed.
    Hatred is no tonic - it is like an acid, eating away at the rest of the person.

  3. Friko: Just trying to stir the pot, right?? So are you inferring that all we bloggers have no aptitude for anything and are posing as talented persons? Are you suggesting that applies to all of us or just some of us in particular?? I think you should name names!!! But I'm in a stir up the post kind of mood myself.

    :) :) :)

  4. Balzac was a cynic. I think that Rodin captured him well in the famous sculpture he did of the man.

  5. Go ahead and stir the pot!

    I don't like pity either. I don't think "hatred is a tonic" though. I like John Lydon's line better: "Anger is an energy."

    It seems to me that there's a fair amount of false modesty going on in blogland. I discovered a beautiful blog recently and told the writer how much I admired what they were doing. They replied to the effect that they weren't trying at all - it just comes out that way. That strikes me as a way of trying to make one's self immune to criticism or praise. If one attacked Balzac, for example, he can always retreat behind, 'Oh well, I have no aptitude; I'm just plodding along blindly.' On the other hand, such an attitude shows a lack of appreciation for those who admire the work.

  6. Ah the question of nature over nurture.If one accepts the existence of good then must one also acknowledge that then evil is the inevitable ? I do not agree with Balzac for as Pondside says hatred is the destructive evil but to underestimate it is foolhardy. Perhaps it is our pity of others that makes us weak and puts us at risk from evil doers?

  7. I have to say that I was immediately struck with Balzac's reference to aptitude and his associated declaration.

    Although I enjoy immensely many of the blogs that I frequent on a daily basis, present company included, I think in today's Cyberspace realm his summation may sufficiently serve as a definitive declaration applicable to a large number of the blogs which I have visited over the past several years who are owned by self-delusional journalist…. :D

  8. Hi Friko,
    Great quote, thanks.

  9. I would love to e-mail you directly. Could you send one to me
    thank you!

  10. QMM - thank you very much for your kind words. Very flattering!

    Pondside - I have hit a nerve; but you can take it. Your comment is absolutely spot on.

    Bonnie - yes, actually. I was wondering what would come up. Sometimes blogs are too facile, meaningless, bland. I also think too many people assume the title of writer when they are no such thing - I am definitely no writer.

    Darlene - yes, he was. It's the world that turns honest men (and women) into cynics and it is very sad when that happens.

    Mark Kerstetter - thank you Mark, I will. You do a bit of that yourself.
    Sometimes I feel there's not enough modesty in blogland. There are two many blogs we wouldn't visit twice. I have yet to meet the blogger who doesn't seem to have a healthy opinion of his/her offerings. I say 'healthy' deliberately, because good blogging takes time, concentration,
    effort and talent.

    her at home - a huge question, not easily answered in a blog. Hatred is self-destructive, it poisons everything. We must not give up pity; it may make us vulnerable but it also gives us strength.

    Alan G - yes and yes again, and not just journalists...

    Herrad - thanks - hope you are well.

    Jenn Jilks - that sounds ominous?

  11. I love the last lines! Not sure if he intended to make me smile but it does.

  12. What if you have no aptitude for posing as a talented person either? Whoops.

  13. elizabethm - he might have been talking about bloggers.

    Fran Hill - come now, Fran, do you know anybody who does NOT have this talent?

  14. I see you must hold your pen with green fingers!


Comments are good, I like to know what you think of my posts. I know you'll keep it civil.