Friday, December 9, 2011

Number Nine / Ten

A. ist sehr aufgeblasen, er glaubt, im Guten weit vorgeschritten zu sein, da er, offenbar als ein immer verlockender Gegenstand, immer mehr Versuchungen aus ihm bisher ganz unbekannten Richtungen sich ausgesetzt f├╝hlt.

A. is very puffed up, he thinks he is far advanced in goodness since, obviously as an object that is ever seductive, he feels himself exposed to ever more temptations from directions hitherto unknown to him. [Kaiser/Wilkins]

A. is terribly puffed up, he considers himself very advanced in goodness, since he feels himself magnetically attracting to himself an ever greater array of temptations from quarters with which he was previously wholly unacquainted. [Hofmann]

Commentary

This is the ninth of the Kaiser/Wilkins aphorisms, while, in Hofmann, it is the first half of the tenth, the preceding being numbered eight and nine, and consisting of an aphorism (see next post) not found in Kaiser/Wilkins at all. Hofmann's tenth unites ninth and tenth Kaiser/Wilkins.

The idea of seduction is sustained with what seems like a familiar sort of a warning, pointing out that pride in one's virtuous attainments is still vanity. His sin of vanity is however prompted by the great many temptations he vanquishes, which shows how victory in the struggle against the seductions of evil is a false victory.

But A. is not resisting seduction, he's the seductive one.

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