Three Quotes to Ponder

by R. D. Laing & Derrick Jensen


"Our behavior is a function of our experience. We act according to the way we see things. If our experience is destroyed, our behavior will be destructive. If our experience is destroyed, we have lost our own selves."
  – R. D. Laing (The Politics of Experience, 1967)


"There is a language older by far and deeper than words. It is the language of bodies, of body on body, wind on snow, rain on trees, wave on stone. It is the language of dream, gesture, symbol, memory. We have forgotten this language. We do not even remember it exists.

In order for us to maintain our way of living, we must, in a broad sense, tell lies to each other, and especially to ourselves. It is not necessary that the lies be particularly believable, The lies act as barriers to truth. These barriers to truth are necessary because without them many deplorable acts would become impossibilities. Truth must at all costs be avoided. When we do allow self-evident truths to percolate past our defenses and into our consciousness, they are treated like so many hand grenades rolling across the dance floor of an improbably macabre party. We try to stay out of harm's way, afraid they will go off, shatter our delusions, and leave us exposed to what we have done to the world and to ourselves, exposed as the hollow people we have become. And so we avoid these truths, these self-evident truths, and continue the dance of world destruction."
  – Derrick Jensen (A language Older Than Words, Context Books, New York, 2000, ISBN 1-893956-0302)

"We are members of the most destructive culture ever to exist. Our assault on the natural world, on indigenous and other cultures, on women, on children, on all of us through the possibility of nuclear suicide and other means--all these are unprecedented in their magnitude and ferocity."
  – Derrick Jensen (Listening to the Land, Sierra Club Books, 1995)



R. D. Laing, [1927-1989] was a British psychiatrist reknown for his treatment of schizophrenia, emphasizing the relativity of experience. His writings was influenced by Kierkegaard, Dostoyevsky and the Existentialists such as Sartre.

Derrick Jensen received a Bachelor of Science in Mineral Engineering Physics from the Colorado School of Mines in 1983 and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Eastern Washington University in 1992. He writes for the Bloomsbury Review, The New York Times Magazine, and The Sun.


This Week's Internal Links

The New Kind of Education - by Jan Baughman

The Dictatorship of Bullshit - by Stephen Gowans

Democracy? When? - by Stephen Gowans

Back to Crete - by Andreas Toupadakis

Talk About Demons! - by Gilles d'Aymery

Sweeping the Truth Under the DU Rug - by Dr. Vladimir Ajdacic & Dr. Predrag Jaksic

Lie Has Short Legs - by Pedja Zoric

The Potter of Gold - by Alma A. Hromic

A Trip to the Garden - by Andreas Toupadakis

Ending or Beginning? - by Milo Clark

The Making of a Radical (Excerpt) - by Scott Nearing

The Real Freedom of Free Speech - by Scott Nearing

Uniform Engendered - by Sandy Lulay


Published November 26, 2001
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