Today I start a diary; it is against my usual habbits, but out of a clearly felt need.
After four years of cutting up it gives me the opportunity to find back the intellectual developement which I think is mine.
I will attempt to reach for the “banners of a never fought battle”. The thoughts of my emotionally so disturbed days must be found again, shifted and developed further. Here and there something of the loose remarks I make must be used, but only when it finds my attention again.
Personal notes I will not, or only seldom, make, and only then when I believe that it will be of philosophical interest to me to remember them.
All thoughts concerning the ‘science of man’ must be written down in it. Not the philosophical. Drafts. Now and then a poem that seems worth remembering. Absolute expressions. This being the matter with style. Not only attention on what one says, but also on how it is said. Find a style that is mine. So far I tried to say the unsayable with direct words. This points to a one-directional intellect. The will to turn expression int an instrument for myself should be at the beginning of this ‘cahier’.
From: Cahier 11: (1904/08 – 1918/19)
Psychologists distinguish three types of memories; in the days I was studying they were the visual, the auditive and the motorical memory. Of these three none of them was applicable to me, although I reacted motorically with the then going experiments. But these are elementary. The closest I come to a characterization of my memory (and my fantasies) is the following: I do not visualize things, almost in ‘factual relations’. I hardly ever remember details, only the meaning of something. Out of these factual relations, that are entirly void of form present in my memory, almost not present at all, the expressions that have not been analyzed are created.
I believe this is one of the reasons my writing is difficult.
I want to point this out, because it is of importance to the appreciation of my memories. In ‘general’ they will be reliable, seperately they will not alwasy be.
From: Cahier 1 (1915 – 1920)
6.I I want to make notes from the start of this year. Purpose: record what my 50th year looks like! Also: record facts without a certain purpose. I have become too abstract and would like to use this diary to re-educate myself to the story-telling, through paying respect to daily life.
3.II It is my intention to avoid anything intellectual in these notes and only write down what has to do with daily life. I therefore not that outside it is +7 degrees Celsius and that since yesterday a comfortable warm rain poors down.
… the thought came to me that all one loves in art becomes beautiful. Beauty is nothing but the expression of the fact that something is being loved. Only thus could she be defined. And beauty would cohere with [the other state], even if it is only civilized love from which she derives. At the time I do not know if this note is worth making or not; it shouldn’t be here, but I don’t have any other ‘cahier’ to put them in.
From: Cahier 30 (ca. 1929 – 1941)